Lawstreet Journal

Section 50 Of the NDPS Act Limited To ‘Personal Search’ Only, Reiterates Supreme [Read Judgment]

Lawstreet Journal 17 Sep 2020 8:34pm

Image courtesy: Lawstreet Journal Judiciary Section 50 Of the NDPS Act Limited To ‘Personal Search’ Only, Reiterates Supreme  [Read Judgment]

The Supreme Court while hearing a criminal appeal on Tuesday (September 15, 2020), reiterated the applicability of Section 50 of the Narcotics Drugs & Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985 [“NDPS Act” or “Act”] which is valid only in the case of personal search. 

A bench comprising of Justice Ashok Bhushan, Justice R. Subhash Reddy, and Justice M.R. Shah heard an appeal challenging the Himachal Pradesh High Court conviction orders against the appellant claimed to be a priest in a temple. The contentions raised by the appellant in the appeal were regarding the non-compliance of Section 50 of the NDPS Act. 

The accused (here, the appellant) was charged for the offense under Section 20 of the NDPS Act for being in possession of 13 Kg of charas. Initially, the Sessions Court had acquitted him mainly on the grounds, inter alia, that there was non-compliance of Section 50 of the NDPS Act by the prosecution. As per Section 50, a person to be searched under Sections 41, 42, or 43 of the NDPS Act has to be searched in presence of a Gazetted Officer or a Magistrate. However, the Trial Court noted that the fact that the samples were handed over to an officer who himself gave that sample to another officer for taking it to the Central Laboratory at Delhi, prime facie raises questions over the tampering of evidence. However, later on, the Himachal High Court set aside the Sessions Court orders and held the accused guilty under Section 20 of the Act.

The Apex Court… Continue Reading...

Tagged: NDPS  
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