(Prayer: This Criminal Petition is filed Under Section 439 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, praying to enlarge the petitioner on bail in Cr.No.30 of 2020 registered by Suddaguntepalya Police Station, Bengaluru City for the offence punishable under Sections 80(C), 21(B), 20(B)(Ii)(C) of NDPS Act.)
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1. This petition is filed by petitioner-accused No.1 under Section 439 of Cr.P.C. seeking regular bail in Crime No.30 of 2020 of Suddaguntepalya Police Station for the offences punishable under Sections 80(c), 21(b), 20(b) (ii) (c) of NDPS Act. The petitioner is said to be in judicial custody since from the date of his arrest.
2. Factual matrix of the petition is as under: It is stated in the complaint that, on receiving credible information that on 03.03.2020, a person will come near Tavarekere bus stand on Aralikatte to sell the drugs to the customer, the complainant informed the same to the ACP of Mico Layout Sub Division and after obtaining permission from the concerned authority, formed a team consisting of pancha witnesses and staff members and went to the spot. At about 10.15 a.m. on the said date, a White Hyundai Car yellow board bearing registration No.KA 01 AJ 7750 came to the spot and two persons got down from the car and one person was holding a cloth bag and they went near the Aralikatte and waiting for the customers. At that time, the complainant and other apprehended the accused and on personal search, they found 1 kg 50 grams of Hashish oil, MDMA 3.5 grams and ganja 2 kgs. They seized the said items. They also seized white car and one cloth bag. They drew panchanama and arrested the accused persons.
3. In pursuance of the complaint filed by the complainant, a case in Crime No.30 of 2020 came to be registered for the aforesaid offences. Thereafter, the investigating officer took up the case for investigation. In the said FIR, the petitioner is arraigned as accused No.1. The case is still under investigation by the investigating officer. The investigating officer also requires to record the statement of witnesses as well as to secure the material documents in order to lay the charge sheet.
4. Heard learned counsel for the petitioner and learned HCGP for respondent State.
5. Learned counsel for the petitioner has taken me through the averments made in the complaint, so also the progress of the case. He contends that the crime came to be registered on the basis of the information given by the informant to the investigating agency. The investigating agency has formed a team consisting of pancha witnesses so also the staff members. He contends that the accused is innocent person and he has not at all involved in the alleged offence. He has been apprehended by the investigating agency on the guise that the aforesaid contraband articles have been found in the possession of the accused and they have seized the same in the presence of the pancha witnesses. But the theory is set by the investigating agency by recording FIR. He contends that the investigating agency have not followed the mandatory requirement relating to the offence under the NDPS Act, in respect of the search of contraband articles which was found in the possession of the accused by securing the presence of the Gazetted Ofifcers. That the contention is also taken by the learned Counsel for the petitioner that in addition to that, the entire allegations made against the accused by recording the FIR, is only based upon the written complaint made by the police officer who given information to the concerned ACP for giving permission to proceed with the case for investigation against the person who is arraigned as accused. That the entire material in respect of FIR for having seized the contraband articles on record to make out a prima facie material against the accused to commit the alleged offence. But the accused is in judicial custody since from the date of arrest and moreover accused has no previous bad antecedents and the accused is having deep roots in the society. This fact is required to be considered. Lastly, he contends that the petitioner is ready to abide by any terms and conditions to be imposed by this Court while considering this bail petition. These are all the contentions as taken by the learned counsel for the petitioner and seeks for allowing this petition by granting bail to the petitioner.
7. Per contra, learned HCGP for the State has taken me through the involvement of this accused in the commission of crime and also he having found in the possession of contraband articles of ganja oil and also ganja weighing 2 kgs. and that the accused was present in the scene of crime for selling the aforesaid contraband articles. Therefore, informant given information to the ACP of Mico Layout Sub Division and thereafter, obtaining permission from the competent authority proceeded for investigation of the case by forming a team consisting of pancha witnesses and staff members. During the investigation, the investigating agency have made some enquiry with the accused relating to the crime and also found in possession of the contraband articles and they seized the same in the presence of the pancha witnesses. They also seized the cloth bag and the car used for committing the crime.
8. He further submits that the case is still under investigation. Moreover, the investigating officer is required to secure other materials in order to lay the charge sheet against the accused persons. Therefore, he contends that if the accused is supposed to be released on bail, certainly he would come in the way of the prosecution case and try to destroy the evidence and so also, it would send an adversary impact on the society as he has involved in the offence relating to NDPS Act. Hence, he contends that the accused is not deserving for bail. Therefore, on all these grounds, learned HCGP seeks for dismissal of the petition.
9. It is in this context of the contentions as taken by learned counsel for the petitioner and learned HCGP for the State, it is relevant to refer to the allegations made in the complaint. It is stated in the complaint that, the complainant on receiving credible information that on 03.03.2020, a person will come near Tavarekere bus stand on Aralikatte to sell the drugs to the customer, went to the spot along with the panchas and staff members and they found a White Hyundai Car yellow board bearing registration No.KA 01 AJ 7750 at the spot and two persons getting down from the car and one person was holding a cloth bag and they went near the Aralikatte and waiting for the customers. At that time, the complainant and other apprehended the accused and on personal search, they found 1 kg 50 grams of Hashish oil, MDMA 3.5 grams and ganja 2 kgs. They seized the said items. They also seized white car and one cloth bag. They drew panchanama and arrested the accused persons. Subsequent to the registration of crime against the accused, that the investigating officer has taken up a case for investigation. The case is still under investigation. Moreover, the investigating officer has to secure the material documents and so also to record the statement of witnesses in order to lay the charge sheet against the accused persons. The contraband articles which were seized from the possession of the accused requires to be tested before the Trial Court only after laying the charge sheet. Moreover, at this stage, it cannot be said specific quantity of the said contraband articles of ganja and ganja oil which were found in the possession of the accused. The learned HCGP has stated about the involvement of this accused along with other accused who were trying to sell the contraband articles at the scene of offence and were waiting for customers. Therefore, at this stage, it does not require any detailed discussion to consider the bail petition. The report made by the investigating officer in respect of the case in Crime No.30 of 2020, specifically states that the accused is not required for the investigating agency for the purpose of investigation. This aspect has been emphasized by the learned Counsel for the petitioner for consideration of bail petition filed by the accused in addition to the grounds urged in this petition. However, the petitioner is said to be abode of State of Kerala. Moreover, he is involved in the alleged crime and was in possession of the contraband articles as stated in the FIR. Therefore, the apprehension expressed by the learned HCGP that if this petitioner/accused No.1 is supposed to be released on bail, certainly he would come in the way of prosecution case and destroy the evidence, it could be curtailed by imposing certain suitable conditions to safeguard the interest of the prosecution.
10. For the aforesaid reasons as well as under the peculiar facts and circumstances of the case, I am of the opinion that petitioner/accused No.1 is deserving for bail. Accordingly, I proceed to pass the following:
The petition filed by the petitioner/Accused No.1 under Section 439 of Cr.P.C. is h
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ereby allowed, subject to the following conditions: i) Petitioner/Accused No.1 shall execute a bond in a sum of Rs.1,00,000/-, with a likesum surety to the satisfaction of the Court of VI Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate Court, Bengaluru City, relating to Crime No.30 of 2020 of Suddaguntepalya Police Station; ii) Petitioner/Accused No.1 shall not tamper or hamper with the case of prosecution witnesses; iii) Petitioner/Accused No.1 shall co-operate with the investigating officer during the investigation; iv) Petitioner/Accused No.1 shall mark his attendance once in a month in first week on Sunday as per the English monthly calendar in between 10.00 a.m. and 5.00 p.m before the concerned SHO in Crime No.30 of 2020, for a period of six months; v) Petitioner/Accused No.1 shall not indulge in any criminal activities, henceforth. If Petitioner/Accused No.1 violates any of the above conditions, the bail order shall automatically stands ceased.