The Punjab and Haryana High Court dismissed an anticipatory bail application of Mohammad Rayyan Ansari in a case registered under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act for selling intoxicating medicines.
A Single Bench of Justice Jasjit Singh Bedi passed this order while hearing an anticipatory bail application filed by Mohammad Rayyan Ansari.
The prayer in the petition under Section 438 Cr.P.C is for the grant of anticipatory bail in case FIR dated 18.06.2023 registered under Sections 21(c), 22(c) and 25 of the NDPS Act at Police Station Munak, Karnal, Haryana.
The facts of the case are that while the police party was on patrolling duty, secret information was received that Pardeep son of Narinder who used to sell intoxicating medicines would be coming from Village Munak to his sister’s house at Bal Ragdan. In case a Nakabandi was set up, he could be apprehended.
Based on the aforementioned information, the petitioner came to be apprehended. The recovery of 240 strips each strips 50 tablets i.e 12000 tablets of Alprazolam tablets and 70 MTP kits came to be recovered from him.
During the course of the investigation, Pradeep revealed that he had purchased the said intoxicating tablets from Mohammad Rayyan Ansari (petitioner) of Arora Medical Store. In pursuance to the disclosure statement, raids were conducted at the premises of Arora Medical, District Council Market, Muzaffarnagar (UP) and at House, K Rehmat Nagar, South Khaladpur, Muzaffarnagar (UP).
However, the petitioner was not found present there. The call details of Mobile of Pardeep and Mobile of the petitioner were obtained from Cyber Cell, DPO, Karnal and perusal of the call details, it was found that two accused were in touch with each other. It also transpired that the petitioner was an accused in one other case FIR dated 17.06.2023 under Section 21C, 22C, 29 NDPS Act, Police Station Assandh along with his co-accused Pradeep in which case he is absconding.
The counsel for the petitioner contends that the petitioner is named in the disclosure statement of his co-accused which has very little evidentiary value.
A status report dated 06.09.2023 by way of an affidavit of Sandeep Singh, HPS, Deputy Superintendent of Police, Assandh, Karnal has been filed on behalf of the State by the counsel for the State. The same is taken on record.
He contends that the petitioner is a habitual offender. One other case FIR dated 17.06.2023 under Section 21C, 22C, 29 NDPS Act Police Station Assandh stands registered against the petitioner in which he is absconding. He, therefore, contends that the antecedents of the petitioner did not entitle him to the grant of anticipatory bail.
The Court noted that,
In Samarth Kumar (supra) the Supreme Court had clearly held that an accused who had been named in the disclosure statement of a co accused was not entitled to the grant of anticipatory bail but could be granted regular bail. However, in Vijay Singh (supra) a somewhat contrary view was taken and the accused therein was granted the concession of anticipatory bail even though he had been an accused in another case under the NDPS Act in which he was on bail.
In Vikrant Singh (supra) this Court held that where an accused had been named in the disclosure statement of his co-accused and there were CDRs/WhatsApp calls/chats between the arrested accused and the person named in a disclosure statement then in the absence of the contents of the conversation/chats bail could not be denied to the said accused.
In Ranjit Singh (supra) and Soni Singh @ Chamkaur Sahib (supra) it has been held by this Court that where there were multiple FIRs against an accused over a period of time then, even though he had been named in a disclosure statement, he was not entitled to the concession of bail.
“Coming back to the facts of the case, other than the case in which the petitioner has been nominated as an accused on the basis of the disclosure statement of a co-accused, the petitioner is also an accused in FIR dated 17.06.2023 under Section 21C, 22C, 29 NDPS Act Police Station Assandh, Pardeep alongwith the accused arrested in the case. It is highly unlikely that the petitioner would have been implicated in multiple FIRs at the whims and fancies of the Investigating Agency.
In fact, when there are multiple FIRs against an accused over a significant period of time, then the twin conditions as envisaged under Section 37 of the NDPS Act that he had not committed an offence and was not likely to commit an offence cannot be satisfied. Further, the limitations to the grant of bail under Section 37 of the NDPS Act are in addition to those prescribed under the Cr.P.C or any other law in force on the grant of bail. Thus, a habitual offender is not entitled to the grant of bail even under the provisions of the Cr.P.C keeping in view his criminal antecedents. On the contrary, in such cases, the custodial interrogation is certainly necessary even though the accused may have joined the investigation at an earlier stage.
Keeping in view the conduct of the petitioner and his criminal antecedents, his custodial interrogation would certainly be necessary to effect recoveries and to take the investigation to its logical conclusion. In view of the above, I find no merit in the petition”, the Court observed while dismissing the petition.