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[Landmark Judgement] Sabarinath V. State of Kerala (2023) 

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Landmark Judgment Law Insider (1)

Published on: 02 October, 2023 at 10:52 IST

Court: High Court of Kerala

Citation: Sabarinath V. State of Kerala (2023) 

Honourable High Court of Kerala has held that Section 36-A of the NDPS Act prescribes a modified application of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 where in the investigation into certain offenses under the NDPS Act be completed within a period of 180 days instead of 90 days as provided under Section 167(2) CrPC. It is held that the benefit of an additional time limit is given for investigating which may extend the time prescribed for investigation up to one year if the Public Prosecutor submits a report indicating the progress of the investigation and giving specific reasons for requiring the detention of the accused beyond the prescribed period of 180 days.

2. Sri. Santhosh, the learned counsel appearing for the petitioner, submitted that the order passed by the learned Additional Sessions Judge cannot be sustained under law. ……………………, it is submitted by the learned counsel that it was mandatory for the Court of Sessions to inform the accused as regards the filing of an application under Section 36A(4) of the NDPS Act for extension of period and also to insist for the presence of the accused at the time when the Court considers the application for extension submitted by the learned Public Prosecutor. ………………………….. It is urged that in the instant case, …………………, which incidentally is the 176th day of remand.

It is further submitted that all that is evident from the order is that the request of the Public Prosecutor for extension was informed to the accused through the Jail Superintendent and nothing more. There is no material to suggest that the accused was actually informed of the filing of the application and he was granted an opportunity to furnish a formal objection.

Expatiating further, the learned counsel relied on the observation of a Full Bench of the Calcutta High Court in Subhas Yadav v. State of West Bengal3, and it is urged that the request for extension of the period of detention must be on the basis of the report of the Public Prosecutor which must record the progress of the investigation and spell out specific reasons to justify further detention beyond 180 days. This requirement has not been complied with, contends the learned counsel.

Drafted By Abhijit Mishra