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Magistrates Cannot Extend Time To Complete Investigation In UAPA Cases: Supreme Court Dismisses Review Petition

LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK
16 March 2022 10:43 AM GMT
Magistrates Cannot Extend Time To Complete Investigation In UAPA Cases: Supreme Court Dismisses Review Petition
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The Supreme Court dismissed a review petition filed by State of Madhya Pradesh against its judgment holding that magistrates would not be competent to extend the time to complete investigations in UAPA cases.The grounds taken in the Review Petition do not make out any error apparent on record to justify interference, the bench comprising Justices Uday Umesh Lalit, S. Ravindra Bhat and Belam...

The Supreme Court dismissed a review petition filed by State of Madhya Pradesh against its judgment holding that magistrates would not be competent to extend the time to complete investigations in UAPA cases.

The grounds taken in the Review Petition do not make out any error apparent on record to justify interference, the bench comprising Justices Uday Umesh Lalit, S. Ravindra Bhat and Belam M Trivedi said.

In this case, the  CJM, Bhopal passed an order extending the period to complete the investigation. Taking note of the said order, the Madhya Pradesh High Court held that the accused were not entitled to default bail. In appeal before the Supreme Court, the accused relied on the decision in Bikramjit Singh vs. State of Punjab (2020) 10 SCC 616 to contend that the extension granted in the instant case by CJM, Bhopal was beyond jurisdiction and would, therefore, be of no consequence.

Section 43D(2)(b) of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967, reads as follows:  "Provided further that if it is not possible to complete the investigation within the said period of ninety days, the Court may if it is satisfied with the report of the Public Prosecutor indicating the progress of the investigation and the specific reasons for the detention of the accused beyond the said period of ninety days, extend the said period up to one hundred and eighty days."

"After considering various provisions of the relevant statues, it was concluded that "so far as all offences under the UAPA are concerned, the Magistrate's jurisdiction to extend time under the first proviso in Section 43-D (2)(b) is nonexistent". Consequently, in so far as "Extension of time to complete investigation" is concerned, the Magistrate would not be competent to consider the request and the only competent authority to consider such request would be "the Court" as specified in the proviso in Section 43-D (2)(b) of the UAPA.", the bench had observed while holding that the accused would thus be entitled to default bail.

Headnotes

Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967 ; Section 43D(2)(b) - Magistrate would not be competent to consider the request for extension of time to complete investigation - The only competent authority to consider such request would be "the Court" as specified in the proviso in Section 43-D (2)(b) of the UAPA - Review petition filed by the State dismissed.

Case details

State of Madhya Pradesh vs Sadique | 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 290 | Review Petition (Crl) Diary No. 1930 of 2022 | 15 March 2022

Coram: Justices Uday Umesh Lalit , S. Ravindra Bhat and Bela M. Trivedi


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