Whether only special court under NIA act is empowered to extend the time for investigation in UAPA cases: SC to decide

Whether only special court under NIA act is empowered to extend the time for investigation in UAPA cases: SC to decide

The Hon’ble bench comprising Hon’ble Justice Uday Umesh Lalit, Hon’ble Justice Ajay Rastogi Hon’ble Justice Aniruddha Bose considering the importance of the matter in the present case requested S.V. Raju, learned Additional Solicitor General to assist the Hon’ble Court in deciding the issue as to whether word ‘court’ in section 43D of Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967 (hereinafter referred to as “UAPA, 1967”) include only special court constituted under National Investigation Agency Act, 2008 (hereinafter referred to as “NIA Act, 2008”).

The matter is listed for hearing on 8-07-202.

In the instant case petitioner who is accused under the UAPA, 1967 is remanded by C.J.M, Bhopal. Further, after the period of filing the investigation report is over i.e., 90 days, on an application by investigating agency C.J.M granted an extension of time to file a charge sheet to 180 days. subsequently, the petitioner herein applied to the chief judicial magistrate for default bail under section 167(2) Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (hereinafter referred to as “Cr. P.C, 1973”) stating that period of investigation has exceeded 90 days which C.J.M Bhopal dismissed stating that Section 43 (D) of the UAPA, 1967 provides 180 days for completion of the investigation.

Subsequently, the accused applied to the Hon’ble high court of Madhya Pradesh contending that under section 22 of the NIA Act, 2008 only special court is empowered to extend the time for investigation. The Hon’ble high court on hearing the application refused to interfere in the case stating that there is no injustice occurred because of the extension of time.

After the Hon’ble high court order, the petitioner herein filed special leave for appeal in which counsel for petitioner Relying on the Hon’ble three-Judge Bench decision of Hon’ble Supreme Court in Bikramjit Singh versus. the State of Punjab, submitted that “the expression “Court” appearing in Section 43D of the UAPA, 1967 is to be seen in the light of the definition of “Court” appearing in Section 2(1)(d) of the UAPA, 1967 Act and as such, the Hon’ble Chief Judicial Magistrate instant matter was not competent to grant an extension of time under Section 43D(2)(b) of the UAPA, 1967.

Moreover, it is submitted by the petitioner’s counsel that the petitioner was entitled to the relief of default bail in terms of Section 167(2) of the Cr.P.C, 1973 read with the provisions of the UAPA, 1967.

Lastly, Pashupati Nath Razdan, learned Advocate appearing for the respondent-State relied upon the decision of this Hon’ble Court in Vidyadharan versus. the State of Kerala.

Tejaswi Goda
I'm Tejaswi Goda pursuing a B.A.LL.B course from the University College of Law, Osmania University. My subjects of interests are Human rights law, Constitutional law, Property laws, Criminal laws, Environment laws. Grabbing information, Researching and writing are activities which I'm most interested in. Reading books is my most favourite hobby. Above all working for climate change management is most prominent for me.