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Customs Versus Yutaka Kochi

2016 (4) TMI 11 - DELHI HIGH COURT

Legality and correctness of judgment passed under Section 20 (b) NDPS Act - Possession of 600 grams of Hashish concealed in an iron trunk - Held that:- as there are inconsistencies and discrepancies, the statement of the Investigating Officer and the evidence produced by the prosecution can’t be believed to base conviction for stringent provisions of the Act. The law on this aspect is that “stringent the punishment stricter the proof”. In such like cases, the prosecution evidence has to be exami .....

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he prosecution on the said date and time. Therefore, the respondent rightly deserved the benefit of doubt and the impugned judgment on that score cannot be faulted. - Decided against the revenue - CRL.A.55/2013 - Dated:- 29-3-2016 - S. P. Garg, J. For the Appellant : Mr. P. C. Aggarwal, Advocate For the Respondent : Mr.S.S.Das, Advocate with Mr.Tarun Priyadarshi, Advocate ORDER S. P. Garg, J. 1. Present appeal has been preferred by Customs to challenge the legality and correctness of a judgment .....

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respondent was going to London (U.K.) in flight No.VS 301 carrying two hand bags. On suspicion he was intercepted and questioned. Foreign and Indian currency of ₹ 16,63,867/- was recovered from his possession. Necessary proceedings were initiated against him in that regard. During the investigation of the said case, two bunches of keys, one visiting card of luggage room T-302, Paharganj along with some other documents were recovered. It was found that the respondent had booked an iron tru .....

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nd 4 small pouches respectively. The recovered substance was weighed and it was found to be 600 grams of Hashish. Necessary investigation/proceedings were carried out. Statement of the respondent was recorded under Section 67 NDPS Act. Upon completion of investigation, a complaint case was filed by Mr.Uday Shankar Sharma, complainant, against the respondent for committing offence punishable under Section 20 of the NDPS Act before the Trial Court. In order to establish its case, the prosecution e .....

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On scanning the impugned judgment, it transpires that the Trial Court has discussed all the relevant contentions of the appellant comprehensively. A number of material discrepancies, contradictions and infirmities have been noted in the impugned judgment to conclude that the evidence led by the prosecution was highly deficient to base conviction. This Court finds no valid reasons to deviate from the findings recorded by the Trial Court whereby the respondent was given benefit of doubt and was a .....

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was made by the Investigating Agency to take the respondent to the place where he had booked the iron trunk containing contraband substance. The Trial Court has noted that the visiting card (Ex. PW1/N) recovered from the respondent did not contain the name of the luggage room. It merely contained the details as luggage room T-302, Main Bazaar, Paharganj. Name of M/s.Ajay Luggage Room, Paharganj, New Delhi did not find mention on the visiting card. It is mystery as to how the Investigating Agenc .....

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(Ex.PW-1/K) there is no indication of hotel Anoop or Ajay Luggage Room. It simply describes that during the personal search of the respondent, a visiting card of luggage room No.T- 302, Main market, Paharganj was recovered. At the time of proceedings at Luggage Room, its owner was not associated in the investigation. No plausible explanation has been offered by the prosecution witnesses as to why pursuant to the disclosure statement regarding booking of an iron trunk with a luggage room at Pahar .....

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ividual at the Luggage Room and as per PW-2 (Bhavesh Kumar Pandya), he identified him to be the person who had booked the Luggage Room on 01.12.2006. Testimony of CW-1 is entirely contradictory to him. CW-1 is Rakesh Singh, employee at Ajay Luggage Room. In his examination-in-chief, he did not support the prosecution and did not identify the accused to be the individual who had booked the luggage in the Luggage Room. No TIP Proceedings for identification of the respondent was conducted. 6. The T .....

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h them for a particular duration on any register / document. It is also unclear as to how much payment was received by PW-2 (Bhavesh Kumar Pandya) for booking the said trunk. He disclosed that at the time of booking the trunk, he had issued the receipt; the original of which was handed over to the respondent. Copy of the same was attached with the trunk. No such original copy of the receipt was recovered from the respondent at the time of his apprehension. Obviously, the said receipt was a very .....

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experts to ascertain his signatures thereon. The Investigating Officer did not find out as to from where the respondent had arranged the heavy trunk; when it was arranged and for what consideration. It was also not verified as to from where the respondent had procured the contraband. It is unclear as to when the respondent had visited India and when the contraband was procured and kept in the trunk. The Investigating Agency did not ascertain as to what was the motive or purpose of the responden .....

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ious discrepancies and contradictions in the testimonies of the panch witnesses PW-7 (Vijay Veer Singh) and PW-9 (Vijay Dhyani). It further observed that the trunk when produced in the Court on 04.07.2007 for the first time was not found properly sealed, as without breaking the seal and without disturbing the paper slip, the thread tied on the trunk could be removed. It also noted that the keys recovered from the respondent at the time of his apprehension were in possession of the custom officer .....

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examined very zealously so as to exclusive very chance of false implication. The prosecution has failed to establish the commission of offence by the respondent and beyond reasonable doubt. It cannot be allowed to take benefit of the respondent s inability to establish his defence in 313 Cr.P.C. statement. Mere apprehension of the respondent is not enough. The evidence is scanty and lacking to establish that the contraband was recovered from the possession of the respondent in the manner alleged .....

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