Mumbai, October 14
A special court here, which granted bail to Sameer Khan, son-in-law of Maharashtra minister Nawab Malik, has said that there is no evidence to prove that Khan was involved in drug smuggling.
Special Judge for Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act cases AA Joglekar had granted bail to Khan and two others last month. A detailed order became available on Wednesday.
Khan, the son-in-law of Nationalist Congress Party leader and Maharashtra Minority Affairs Minister Nawab Malik, was arrested on January 13, 2021 by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) for possession of drugs.
The prosecution alleged that Khan was part of a drug syndicate and was involved in smuggling as well as consuming banned substances.
In the judgment on his bail plea, the court pointed out that as per the Chemical Analysis (CA) report, cannabis was not detected in 11 samples, and therefore “the principle of prosecution with respect to the application of Section 29 fails”.
Section 29 of the NDPS Act deals with abetment to the commission of offenses listed under the Act or being part of a criminal conspiracy.
The court further observed that the NCB did not bring anything on record to prove the conspiracy, at least prima facie.
“It is clear that when the CA report relied upon by the prosecution is negative, no charge can be made under section 27A,” it added.
Section 27A deals with the financing of illegal traffic and punishment for harboring criminals.
The NCB has claimed that the accused conspired to purchase, sell and transport 194.6 kg of Ganja (Bhang).
The central anti-drug agency claimed that Khan and five others were dealing in “commercial quantities” of the drug, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years.
Under the NDPS Act, the punishment is less if the amount of the drug is less; When it exceeds a certain limit, it is classified as ‘commercial’ and severe punishment is given.
Khan, in his bail application, had cited a forensic lab report which said that 11 of the 18 samples sent to him did not contain any trace of cannabis.
Prosecution sources said the NCB may approach the High Court to challenge the bail order.
Against the backdrop of a recent raid by the NCB on a cruise ship off the Mumbai coast, during which actor Shah Rukh Khan’s son Aryan was arrested, Nawab Malik earlier in the day alleged that the agency had “malicious intentions” and Included in “Select Leaks”. “To frame the people. -PTI