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Anti-Narcotics Force (ANF) has challenged the Lahore High Court order granting post-arrest bail to Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz leader Rana Sanaullah in the heroin smuggling case.

The ANF on Wednesday through its regional director/force commander filed a criminal petition under Article 185(3) of Constitution for leave to appeal against the Lahore High Court (LHC) order, dated 23-12-2019, for bail to the PML-N Punjab president. The petitioner stated if the impugned order is not set aside it will cause grave miscarriage of justice and illegality.

He submitted that the LHC failed to consider that the respondent (Rana Sanaullah) is highly influential person and has been using his influence while remaining behind the bar and while he is enlarged on bail, he will obstruct the trial proceeding and tamper with the prosecution evidence.

The High Court went into deeper appreciation of evidence, and this exercise could not have been undertaken in a petition under Section 497 CrPC. It has failed to consider that the observations made in the judgment are likely to prejudice the case of the prosecution in trial.

He submitted that the LHC bench has ignored the fact that no fresh ground was shown by the accused /respondent in second bail petition. It mentioned that CCTV footage on the basis of that 2nd bail petition was filed was available with the accused even at the time of filing the 1st bail petition. The LHC while passing the impugned order wrongly concluded that sending 20 grams of heroin as representative sample out of total quantity of 15 kilograms makes the case of accused as one of further inquiry.

The High Court totally ignored the fact that 15 kg of heroin was in one packet/slab therefore in the light of Supreme Court guideline in Ameer Zeb case only one representative sample was required to be sent for chemical examination, which was accordingly sent by the prosecution therefore the impugned order is against the settled principles of law and guidelines of apex court. It contended that the impugned order wrongly observed that no recovery memo of narcotics was prepared at the place of recovery, whereas the fact is that recovery memo was prepared on spot by prosecution and remaining proceedings were carried out at RD ANF in order to avoid disturbing peace.

The petition said that it was observed by High Court verdict that physical remand of accused was not sought by investigating agency to probe into the drug network operating under the supervision of the accused. The fact is evident that direct recovery of narcotics was affected from accused upon his pointation; therefore, there was no further physical remand of accused was required.

The High Court bench did not consider the fact that challan was submitted on 23-07-2019 and copies under section 265-C were handed over to the accused on 09-08-2019. Similarly, supplementary challan was submitted on 28-09-19 and copies of it were delivered to him on 02-10-19; therefore, all record was available with the accused even at the time of filing 1st bail petition.

The impugned bail order was passed in violation of Supreme Court judgment in 2019 SCMR 1928 wherein it has been held that in narcotics cases principles of further inquiry will not be applicable. Moreover, bar of Section 51 of CNSA, 1997 was also ignored by the LHC while passing the order.

The LHC judge in chamber has erred while considering political victimization as a ground in narcotics case. He has also erred while giving findings on the recovery memo contrary to the record and facts of the case, said the petition.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2020


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