“Divided Verdict in Narcotics Case: One Conviction Upheld, Another Overturned Due to Procedural Lapses” Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985 – Sections 42, 50 and 67 – The appeals arise from a common judgment by the Gujarat High Court, dismissing appeals against a trial court’s conviction of the appellants under the NDPS Act for possession of narcotics – The main issues revolve around the compliance with mandatory procedures of the NDPS Act during the search and seizure, and the admissibility of confessional statements under Section 67 of the NDPS Act – The appellants contend non-compliance with Sections 42 and 50 of the NDPS Act, questioning the seizure procedure and the reliability of witnesses – The NCB argues that the procedures were followed correctly, the witnesses are reliable, and there was no motive to falsely implicate the appellants – The Court dismissed Anwarkhan’s appeal, upholding his conviction, while allowing Appellant’s appeal, acquitting him due to insufficient evidence and doubts about the seizure procedure – The Court found the evidence against Anwarkhan convincing but had reservations about the evidence against Appellant, particularly the identification and the admissibility of his confessional statement – The Court applied the principles from the case of Tofan Singh v. State of Tamil Nadu, which ruled that confessional statements under Section 67 of the NDPS Act are not admissible as evidence – Anwarkhan’s conviction stands, while Appellant is acquitted and his bail bonds discharged. The Court directed Anwarkhan to surrender to serve the remaining sentence.


May 5, 2024

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