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Criminal Lawyer: Conviction under NDPS Act was set aside due to absence of public witness of recovery; SC.

Supreme Court of India

Justice Navin Sinha and Justice Ashok Bhushan

The SC {Vijay Pandey versus State of Uttar Pradesh} holds it is difficult to believe that in a rural residential locality the police were unable to find a single independent witness. It was further held that the identity of the sample stated to have been seized from the appellant was not conclusively established by the prosecution. It was also held that the earlier conviction of the appellant may be relevant for the purpose of sentence but cannot be a ground for conviction in the present case.

It was held that the failure of the prosecution to relate the seized sample with that seized from the appellant makes the case no different from failure to produce the seized sample itself. In view of the said glaring loophole in recovery, seizure and identification of the sample; the conviction of the appellant/accused under Section 8 and 15 of the NDPS Act and also consequent imprisonment for 15 years and fine were set aside by the SC. The accused was set free.

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