Lapses by CCB help Sanjana, two others out of drugs case

The three accused were actor Archana Galrani aka Sanjana Galrani, realtor Shivaprakash aka Chippi and Adithya Mohan Agarwal aka Adithya Agarwal.
Image used for representational purpose only.
Image used for representational purpose only.

BENGALURU: Noting that the accused cannot be tried in a single crime registered next year for different distinct offences committed previous years as it is necessary to register separate First Information Reports (FIRs) for those past offences and file separate chargesheets, the Karnataka High Court quashed the criminal proceedings against three accused, chargesheeted in 2021 in a drug case.

The three accused were actor Archana Galrani aka Sanjana Galrani, realtor Shivaprakash aka Chippi and Adithya Mohan Agarwal aka Adithya Agarwal. Justice Hemant Chandangoudar on March 25 allowed their petitions challenging the proceedings against them and released the order recently.

The court said the accused have been chargesheeted for the offences related to 2015, 2018 and 2019. If the FIR was registered in connection with the offences committed between April 11, 2020 and September 4, 2020, the petitioners cannot be tried for the earlier offences of 2015, 2018 and 2019, because of Section 219(1) of CrPC. It was necessary for the police to register FIRs for those past offences and file chargesheets after investigation, as ruled by the coordinate bench of the high court in Virendra Khanna’s case on January 17, 2022. The continuation of criminal proceedings against the petitioners will be an abuse of the process of law, and the impugned proceedings are quashed, the court said.

Arguing for Adithya Mohan Agarwal and Archana Galrani, senior advocate Hasmath Pasha contended that the accused were not named in the FIR and no materials were recovered from them, but their statements were recorded for the past incidents between 2015 and 2019, for which no FIR was registered.

Advocate Amar Correa argued that no offence was disclosed against Shivaprakash in the FIR, registered based on the statement of one BK Ravishankar. No materials were recovered from him and was not subjected to chemical analysis to establish that he had consumed drugs, he pleaded.

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