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hawa mahal jaipur

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Section 50 of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985 (for short ‘the NDPS Act’)= whether the empowered officer, acting under Section 50 of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985 (for short ‘the NDPS Act’) is legally obliged to apprise the accused of his right to be searched before a Gazetted Officer or a Magistrate and whether such a procedure is mandatory under the provisions of the NDPS Act.= whether PW1, the officer who had conducted the search on the person of the appellant had followed the procedure laid down under Section 50 of the NDPS Act. On this question, there were conflicts of views by different Benches of this Court and the matter was referred to a five Judge Bench. This Court in Vijaysingh Chandubha Jadeja (supra) answered the question, stating that it is imperative on the part of the officer to apprise the person intended to be searched of his right under Section 50 of the NDPS Act, to be searched before a Gazetted Officer or a Magistrate. This Court also held that it is mandatory on the part of the authorized officer to make the accused aware of the existence of his right to be searched before a Gazetted Officer or a Magistrate, if so required by him and this mandatory provision requires strict compliance. The suspect may or may not choose to exercise the right provided to him under the said provision, but so far as the officer concerned, an obligation is cast on him under Section 50 of the NDPS Act to apprise the person of his right to be searched before a Gazetted Officer or a Magistrate. The question, as to whether this procedure has been complied with or not, in this case the deposition of PW1 assumes importance, which reads as follows: “He was apprised while telling the reason of being searched that he could be searched before any Magistrate or any Gazetted Officer if he wished. He gave his consent in written and said that I have faith on you, you can search me. Fard regarding apprising and consent is Ex.P- 3 on which I put my signature from A to B and the accused put his signature from C to D. E to F is the endorsement of the consent of the accused and G to H is signature, which has been written by the accused.” 8. The above statement of PW1 would clearly indicate that he had only informed the accused that he could be searched before any Magistrate or a Gazetted Officer if he so wished. The fact that the accused person has a right under Section 50 of the NDPS Act to be searched before a Gazetted Officer or a Magistrate was not made known to him. We are of the view that there is an obligation on the part of the empowered officer to inform the accused or the suspect of the existence of such a right to be searched before a Gazetted Officer or a Magistrate, if so required by him. Only if the suspect does not choose to exercise the right in spite of apprising him of his right, the empowered officer could conduct the search on the body of the person. 9. We may, in this connection, also examine the general maxim “ignorantia juris non excusat” and whether in such a situation the accused could take a defence that he was unaware of the procedure laid down in Section 50 of the NDPS Act. Ignorance does not normally afford any defence under the criminal law, since a person is presumed to know the law. Indisputedly ignorance of law often in reality exists, though as a general proposition, it is true, that knowledge of law must be imputed to every person. But it must be too much to impute knowledge in certain situations,for example, we cannot expect a rustic villager, totally illiterate, a poorman on the street, to be aware of the various law laid down in this countryi.e. leave aside the NDPS Act. We notice this fact is also within the knowledge of the legislature, possibly for that reason the legislature in its wisdom imposed an obligation on the authorized officer acting under Section 50 of the NDPS Act to inform the suspect of his right under Section 50 to be searched in the presence of a Gazetted Officer or a Magistrate warranting strict compliance of that procedure. 10. We are of the view that non-compliance of this mandatory procedure has vitiated the entire proceedings initiated against the accused- appellant. We are of the view that the Special Court as well as the High Court has committed an error in not properly appreciating the scope of Section 50 of the NDPS Act. The appeal is, therefore, allowed. Consequently the conviction and sentence imposed by the Sessions Court and affirmed by the High Court are set aside. The accused-appellant, who is in jail, to be released forthwith, if not required in connection with any other case.

REPORTABLE IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA CRIMINAL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CRIMINAL APPEAL NO.817 OF 2008     Ashok Kumar Sharma …. Appellant Versus State of Rajasthan …. Respondent   J U D G M E N T   K.S. Radhakrishnan, J.   1. The short question that has come up for consideration in this appeal … Continue reading

When the delay was occurred due to modifications of the complainants, in constructing a house under a scheme, it cannot be attributed that the board failed to deliver the house as per the agreement=“Under such schemes by a public body the houses are constructed on contract basis and in every contract fix norms and specifications are mentioned in the agreement with the contractor. If any major changes are sought by the allotee, there has to be some modification in the terms and conditions in the agreement with the contractor. In such circumstances delay in giving the possession of the complete house cannot be attributed to the Housing Board and in our opinion it was the complainant who was responsible in getting the construction of the particular house in time and getting the possession. After taking the possession of the house without any protest the complainant cannot be allowed to put the entire blame on the Housing Board so as to claim any interest or solatium as per terms and conditions of the allotment under a particular scheme.”

NATIONAL CONSUMER DISPUTES REDRESSAL COMMISSION NEW DELHI   FIRST APPEAL NO. 471 OF 2011 (Against the order dated 22.9.2011 in Complaint Case No.68 of 2010 of the State Commission, Rajasthan) Dr. Veena Singhal Wife of Dr. Brijendra Singhal, Resident of 152/11, Shipra Path, Mansarovar, Jaipur                                                                                                 ……….Appellant Versus 1. Chairman Rajasthan Housing Board, Bhagwan Das Road, Jaipur   2. Deputy Housing Commissioner Rajasthan Housing … Continue reading

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