A SPECIAL court this week ordered for the de-freezing of accounts of two accused in the drugs case filed following the death of actor Sushant Singh Rajput, observing that they were seized illegally by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB).
Two accused, Jai Madhok and Zaid Vilatra, filed separate applications before the special court stating that their bank accounts were seized by the NCB. Madhok’s plea said that he has accounts in two banks, which informed him in October last year that they were stopping transactions.
Madhok’s plea said that there was no allegation that the bank accounts had any proceeds related to the alleged crime. He said that the investigation officer had not informed a magistrate as required under Section 102 of the Criminal Procedure Code.
The NCB through its special public prosecutor (SPP) opposed the plea stating that its investigation is continuing. The court said that as per the CrPC, the police officer is required to report a seizure to the magistrate.
“In absence of such report, the said act of the investigating officer is held to be illegal. Though the learned SPP filed the reply, the said reply is silent on the point of compliance of sub-section 3 of Section 102 of the CrPC,” Additional Sessions Judge D B Mane said in his order. He allowed the two bank accounts to be de-freezed.
The order also directed Madhok to file an affidavit stating that he would make the balance amount in the accounts available to the court for passing necessary orders during the pendency of the case. It asked the NCB Zonal unit in Mumbai to issue necessary letters to the concerned banks.
Similar relief was also granted to Vilatra, who submitted that his bank account was seized without complying with the required procedure. Vilatra also submitted that the amount is the profit share from his restaurant business, had nothing to do with the alleged sale of narcotics and the seizure had made it difficult for him to meet his daily expenses.
In his case too, the court said that the NCB had not made any submission on whether a report was given to the magistrate about the seizure.
In November, the court had also allowed de-freezing of bank accounts of actor Rhea Chakraborty, named accused in the case after she moved a plea stating that its seizure was causing grave injustice to her as she had to pay her employees, fulfil tax liabilities.
The court this week also allowed the return of phones of one of the accused and an application to travel abroad by another observing that investigation against him is over and a chargesheet has been filed.
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