Non-compliance of mandatory provisions for search and seizure under Narcotics Act (NDPS) vitiates conviction: SC [Read Judgment]

Non-compliance of mandatory provisions for search and seizure under Narcotics Act (NDPS) vitiates conviction: SC [Read Judgment]

The Supreme Court in State of Rajasthan vs. Jag Raj Singh @ Hansa, has held that like Section 42(1) and Section 42(2) of Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, vitiates the Conviction under the said Act.

Division Bench of the Apex Court comprising of Justices Abhay Manohar Sapre and Ashok Bhushan upheld a High Court judgment which had acquitted the accused on this ground.

The Bench observed: “The present is not a case where the Station House Officer suddenly carried out search at a public place. The Station House Officer in his statement has also come up with the facts and case to prove compliance of Section 42. When search is conducted after recording information under Section 42(1), the provisions of Section 42 has to be complied with.”

Referring to Karnail Singh vs. State of Haryana, the Court further said: “The present is not a case where insofar as compliance of Section 42(1) proviso even an arguments based on substantial compliance is raised there is total non-compliance of Section 42(1) proviso. As observed above, Section 43 being not attracted search was to be conducted after complying the provisions of Section 42. We thus, conclude that the High Court has rightly held that non-compliance of Section 42(1) and Section 42(2) were proved on the record and the High Court has not committed any error in setting aside the conviction order.”

Read the Judgment here.