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Central Government designates the Court of Additional Judicial Commissioner, Ranchi in the State of Jharkhand as a Special Court for the purposes of providing speedy trial of offences punishable with imprisonment of two years or more as per clause (a) of sub-section (2) of Section 435 of the Companies Act, 2013.

Ministry of Corporate Affairs

[Notification dt. 5-5-2022]

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Delhi High Court: Chandra Dhari Singh, J., granted bail to an accused on being satisfied with “reasonable grounds” as per Section 37 (b)(ii) of the NDPS Act, 1985.

An application under Section 439 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 for seeking bail in FIR under Sections 22 of the Narcotics, Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985.

Factual Matrix

ASI Pawan Kumar received information that a person from Rohini Delhi was involved in sale and supply of Ecstasy (a party drug) in Delhi-NCR and would come near an apartment to deliver the same to someone else. On receiving the said information, the raid was conducted.

On conducting a formal search in light of provisions of NDPS Act, 100 Pills of Ecstasy were recovered and the same was seized. Hence, the FIR under Sections 22/29 of the NDPS Act was registered and further investigation of the case was carried out.

Accused disclosed that he had received the above-mentioned contraband from the applicant and later the applicant was apprehended and on recovering 20 grams of 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) from his possession, he was arrested.

In view of the above, charges were framed for the commission of offences under Sections 22 and 29 of the NDPS Act.

Analysis, Law and Decision

In view of the gravity of the consequences of drug trafficking, the offences under the NDPS Act have been made cognizable and non-bailable, High Court expressed while referring to Section 37 of the NDPS Act.

Section 37 NDPS Act does not allow granting bail for offences punishable under Section 19 or Section 24 or Section 27A and for offences involving commercial quantity unless the two-fold conditions prescribed under the Section have been met.

Before granting bail, the Court must be satisfied with the scheme of Section 439 CrPC.

The Court under Section 37(b)(ii) of the NDPS Act is not required to be merely satisfied about the dual conditions i.e., prima facie opinion of the innocence of the accused and that the accused will not commit a similar offence while on bail, but the court must have “reasonable grounds‟ for such satisfaction.

Elaborating further on the term “reasonable grounds”, Court expressed that, the said term is not capable of any rigid definition nor of being put into any straight-jacket formula, but its meaning and scope will be determined based on the surrounding facts and circumstances of each case. Thus, what may be reasonable in one set of facts may not be reasonable in another set of facts.

High Court noted that the main accused was charged with the possession of a larger quantity of contraband and on the basis of whose statement the applicant was arraigned and raised has already been released on bail. Hence the applicant’s application merited indulgence of this Court on the ground of parity.

“Reasonable Grounds” in the present matter were found by the Court.

The applicant had been incarcerated for more than 4 years as an undertrial, whereas on date, two of the witnesses have been examined and the trial remains pending.

On observing the above, Court expressed that,

Speedy Justice is a Fundamental Right enshrined under the ambit of Article 21 of the Constitution of India, and the same needs to be given effect by this Court in letter and in spirit, else it will remain as a dead letter of law. 

Supreme Court’s decision in Abdul Rehman Antulay v. R.S. Nayak, (1992) 1 SCC 225 was cited wherein detailed guidelines were laid down with respect to speedy trial. The said guidelines were also upheld by a 7- Judge Bench of the Supreme Court in P. Ramachandra Rao v. State of Karnataka, (2002) 4 SCC 578.


Applicant was in jail for more than 4 years and out of 14 witnesses only 2 were examined to date and no possibility of trial to be concluded in the near future

Hence, the applicant cannot be incarcerated for an indefinite period and the Court must step in to ensure speedy justice to the applicant.

In view of the above discussion, the applicant was granted bail and the Court laid down emphasis on parity and clean antecedents of the applicant.

The applicant was directed to furnish a personal bond of Rs 50,000, with two sureties of like amount and bail conditions, were laid down.

While allowing the application, Court directed Trial Court to conclude the trial expeditiously. [Mahesh v. State (GNCTD), 2022 SCC OnLine Del 394, decided on 8-2-2022]

Advocates before the Court:

For the Petitioner:

Mr. Akshay Bhandari and

Mr. Digvijay Singh, Advocates

For the Respondent:

Kusum Dhalla, APP for the State

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Orissa High Court: Sashikant Mishra J. allowed the criminal petition and quashed the FIR and the criminal proceeding due to inordinate delay on the part of investigating authorities.

The facts of the case are such that an FIR was lodged against the present petitioner on by the then Tahasildar, Chhendipada before the Officer-in- Charge, Chhendipada Police Station leading to registration of case for the alleged commission of offence under Sections 447/379/188/294/535/506 of Penal Code, 1860 i.e. IPC. The said case is presently pending in the Court of J.M.F.C., Chhendipada. Final Report was submitted in the case after more than 15 years. The inaction of the investigating agency complied with inordinate delay was cited as a ground by the petitioner for quashment of the FIR and the consequential criminal proceedings in the present application filed under Section 482 Cr.P.C.

Counsel for the petitioner M/s. Anirudha Das, A Das,S.C. Mishra, A. Das and A. Sahoo submitted that that continuance of the case without Final Form being submitted for as long as 15 years by itself is an abuse of the process of Court. It is further argued that the petitioner is presently aged about 72 years and has been going through tremendous mental strain and anxiety because of pendency of the criminal case and the uncertainty attached to it. Since right to speedy trial is also a part of fundamental right under Article 21 of the Constitution of India, it was contended that inaction of the investigating agency for an inordinately long period of time directly violates such right, for which the proceedings need to be quashed.

Counsel for respondents Mr. P. K. Maharaj admitting that the Final Form was not filed for as long as 15 years, however, contends that no time limit being prescribed for conclusion of a criminal proceeding, mere delay in submission of Final Form or Final Report, as the case may be, cannot be a ground to quash the Proceedings.

The Court observed that this is a case of a man against whom an FIR was lodged and investigation continued for as long as 15 years to ultimately end in a Final Report being filed. One can only imagine the stress that the petitioner would have undergone during all these years with the “Sword of Damocles” hanging over his head.

The Court further observed that pendency of a criminal proceeding, irrespective of the nature of the offence alleged, are sufficient to cause concern, anxiety and apprehension in the mind of the accused not to speak of the expenses that he may have to incur in defending himself. What is a matter of greater concern to note is that there is no explanation whatsoever from the side of the investigating agency as to the reasons for non-completion of investigation for all these years.

The Court also took note of the fact that save and except the offence under Section 506, all the other offences alleged to have been committed by the accused namely, Sections 447/379/188/294/353 of IPC, are punishable with imprisonment for terms ranging from one year to three years at the most. So even if a Final Form had been submitted, the concerned Magistrate would have been hard put to take cognizance keeping in view the provisions under Section 468 of Cr.P.C. However, that is besides the point. The crux of the matter is inordinate delay in completion of the investigation.

The Court held that the inaction of the investigating agency to conclude the investigation for as long as 15 years, that too, without offering even a semblance of explanation is a direct affront to the cherished principle of right to speedy trial ingrained in the provisions of Article 21 of the Constitution of India.

The Court held this is a fit case to exercise its inherent powers under Section 482 of Cr.P.C. to put an end to the fiasco, once for all, moreso, as the investigation has ended in Final Report True being submitted.

The Court also observed that the higher police authorities should take note of such inaction on the part of the investigating officer (s) and pass appropriate orders to be followed by all concerned so as to prevent the same from recurring in future.[Binod Bihari Shetty v. State of Orissa, CrlMC No. 112 of 2020, decided on 03-01-2022]

Arunima Bose, Editorial Assistant has reported this brief.

Case BriefsSupreme Court

Supreme Court: In a case where a 3 year old girl was raped and strangulated to death, the 3-judge Bench of L. Nageswara Rao, B.R. Gavai* and B.V. Nagarathna, JJ., commuted sentence of capital punishment to life imprisonment.

The Fast Track Court, Raigarh had convicted the appellant for the offences punishable under Sections 363, 366, 376(2)(i), 377, 201, 302 read with Section 376A of the Penal Code, 1860 and Section 6 of the POCSO Act, 2012 and vide the same judgment and order, the appellant was sentenced to death for the offence punishable under Section 302 of the IPC. Subsequently, vide the impugned judgment and order, the High Court had confirmed the death penalty.

3 year Old Raped, Strangulated to Death

The victim, aged 3 years went missing on the unfortunate day and when she couldn’t be traced till evening a missing case was lodged. Later that day, the appellant himself came forward to claim that if he be permitted to conduct worship he could tell the whereabouts of the victim child. Accordingly, after worship the appellant stated that the child was inside a sack in the bushes near a pole beside the Amlibhauna road. On suspicion, the police was informed and during search the dead body of the victim soaked in blood and in a naked condition was found from the stated place.

On being interrogated, the appellant revealed that the previous day, he saw the victim girl who lived on the floor above his house coming downstairs, whom he persuaded and took her into his room, where he forcibly made physical relation with her and when the deceased started crying loudly, he pressed her mouth and nose with a pillow and murdered her by strangulating. He then wiped the blood and the ejaculated sperm smeared on his penis with a towel kept in the room, filled the dead body in a plastic sack of lentil by twisting her hands and legs and hid it in the stated place.

Whether guilt of the Appellant was proved beyond reasonable doubt

As the conviction was based on circumstantial evidence, the appellant submitted that the prosecution had utterly failed to establish the incriminating circumstances and in any case, failed to establish the chain of events, which lead to no other conclusion than the guilt of the accused.

Noticing the oral report of the victim being missing and the FIR that came to be registered, the Bench stated that the first circumstance that the victim went missing at around 10.00 am, and thereafter, they started searching for her has been proved beyond doubt. Further, corroborating statements of the parents of the victim and one of their neighbours that the appellant had claimed that the child could be traced by worship and subsequent recovery of materials used for performing the worship along with the recovery of victim from the place claimed by the appellant also proved the case against the appellant beyond reasonable doubts. Another circumstance against the appellant was the recovery of the black jeans half pant of the deceased from the dumping area as told by the appellant and the gamchha (towel) and pillow from the house of the appellant.

Applicability of the Section 27 of Evidence Act

On the contention that the memorandum of the appellant with regard to recovery of dead body was not admissible under Section 27 of the Evidence Act as the same was from an open place, accessible to one and all, the Bench stated that in State of Himachal Pradesh v. Jeet Singh, (1999) 4 SCC 370, it had been held that what is relevant is not whether the place was accessible to others or not, but whether it was ordinarily visible to others. If the place at which the article hidden is such where only the person hiding it knows until he discloses that fact to any other person, then it will be immaterial whether the concealed place is accessible to others.

Further, the High Court, after going through the photographs and video clips of the search had noted, “the recovery of dead body was made from a place which could not be said to be accessible to an ordinary person without prior knowledge as the body recovered was kept concealed in a gunny bag inside the shrubs situated at sufficient distance from the main road. In the statement under Section 313 CrPC, the accused/appellant failed to explain how he came to know that the deceased had been murdered and thrown in the shrubs after wrapping her in a gunny bag……..”

Hence, the Bench held that in any case, the recovery of the body on the information given by the appellant was duly proved by the memorandum of the appellant under Section 27 of the Evidence Act and the recovery panchnama. That apart, the oral testimony of PWs 1, 2, 3, 5 and 19 corroborated the same.

Speedy Trial and Accused’s Right to be properly heard

The appellant submitted that since the Raigarh District Bar Association had taken a resolution that no lawyer from the Bar would appear for him, it was difficult for him to engage a lawyer and the lawyer appointed by the Court also was not given sufficient opportunity to defend the case as the lawyer was appointed on 06-06-2016, immediately on the next day, the evidence of PWs 3 to 7 were recorded and the judgment and order of conviction along with sentence of death penalty was passed on 17-06-2016.

Opining that though a speedy trial is desirable, however, sufficient time ought to have been given to the counsel for the accused to prepare for the case after he was appointed, the Bench stated that even insofar as the award of sentence is concerned, some period ought to have been given between the date of conviction and the award of sentence, specifically when a death penalty was awarded. However, after scrutinizing the evidence in depth, the Bench denied the allegations that any prejudice was caused to the accused inasmuch as the witnesses had been cross-examined in detail by the lawyer appointed by the court.

Capital Punishment and Possibility of Accused being reformed

While elaborating whether a case falls within the category of the rarest of rare, the Supreme Court, in Mannan v. State of Bihar, (2019) 16 SCC 584, had held that the brutality, and/or the gruesome and/or heinous nature of the crime is not the sole criterion. It is not just the crime which the Court is to take into consideration, but also the criminal, the state of his mind, his socioeconomic background, etc. as awarding death sentence is an exception, and life imprisonment is the rule.

Noticing that the Trial Court had convicted the appellant and imposed death penalty on the very same day, the Bench opined that the Trial Court as well as the High Court had only taken into consideration the crime but they had not taken into consideration the criminal, his state of mind, his socioeconomic background, etc. Therefore, considering that the appellant was a young person, who was 23 years old at the time of commission of the offence, came from a rural background and his conduct in the prison had been found to be satisfactory and the fact that he had no criminal antecedents, the Bench held that it could not be said that there was no possibility of the appellant being reformed and rehabilitated foreclosing the alternative option of a lesser sentence and making imposition of death sentence imperative.


In the light of the above, the appeal was partly allowed. The judgment and order of conviction for the offences punishable under Sections 363, 366, 376(2)(i), 377, 201, 302 read with Section 376A of the IPC and Section 6 of the POCSO Act was upheld. However, the death penalty imposed on the appellant under Section 302 IPC was commuted to life imprisonment. [Lochan Shrivas v. State Of Chhattisgarh, 2021 SCC OnLine SC 1249, decided on 14-12-2021]

*Judgment by: Justice B.R. Gavai

Kamini Sharma, Editorial Assistant has reported this brief.

Appearance by:

For the Appellants: Anand Grover, Senior Counsel appearing

For the State of Chhattisgarh: Nishanth Patil, Advocate

Case BriefsDistrict Court

Saket Courts, New Delhi: Anuj Agrawal, Additional Sessions Judge-05, while addressing the present matter, expressed that,

A litigant who takes liberty with court procedure should anticipate the necessary consequences.

a stern message is required to be sent to the litigants who indulge in frivolous and vexatious litigation as such litigation not only clogs arteries of justice delivery system but also deprives genuine litigants of their fundamental right of speedy trial.

It was observed that no application was moved by revisionist under Section 5 of the Limitation Act seeking condonation of delay in filing present revision petition, challenging the orders passed by the trial court.

Factual Matrix

A complaint alleging commission of an offence under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act was filed by revisionist/complainant with the allegation that respondent had issued a cheque for an amount of Rs 5 lakhs in discharge of their legal liability. On presentation of the said cheque, it got dishonoured for reasons ‘insufficient funds’. Respondent did not make payment despite service of notice due to which the complaint under provisions of NI Act was filed.

Last order of the trial court was passed on 4-12-2017, whereas the instant revision petition came to be filed on 19-3-2018. The limitation period as per Article 131 of Schedule to Limitation Act, is 90 days from the date of impugned order (s).

Therefore, in view of the above, the instant revision was filed beyond the limitation period. There was no application for condonation of delay or a whisper about the instant petition being filed beyond period of limitation.

“…law aids the vigilant and not the indolent.”

Settled Law

On expiry o period of limitation, a valuable right accrues in favour of other side and same cannot be defeated in a routine manner and existence of discretion by court for condoning the delay. If the delay is not properly, satisfactorily and convincingly explained, court cannot condone delay merely on asking of aggrieved parties.

Analysis, Law and Decision

Court held that the present revision was hopelessly time-barred with regard to impugned orders.

Bench before parting with this Order, expressed its anguish and was appalled by the insidious and cavalier approach of the revisionist.

In Court’s view, liberal access to justice should not be construed by anyone as a mean to lead chaos and indiscipline and frivolous petitions should be penalized with heavy cost. The sanctity of the judicial process will be seriously eroded if such attempts are not dealt with firmly.

Further, Court stated that

It is only then the courts would be in a position to resolve genuine causes in a time bound manner and answer the concerns of those who are in need of justice. Imposition of real time costs is also necessary to ensure that access to courts is available to citizens with genuine grievances and not to frivolous petitions like the present one.

While dismissing the present revision, cost of Rs 1 lakhs were imposed for the mischievous approach. [Madhulika Tripathi v. Logix Corporate Solution (P) Ltd., Revision Petition No. 207 of 2018, decided on 22-11-2021]

Case BriefsSupreme Court

Supreme Court: The 3-judge bench of Ashok Bhushan*, R. Subhash Reddy and MR Shah, JJ has reiterated that an application by a person who is in no way connected with the criminal proceeding or criminal trial under Section 482 Cr.P.C. cannot ordinarily be entertained by the High Court.


The Court was dealing with a case wherein a person (respondent no. 2) who is “a social activist and an advocate” and “a person having an urge to positively contribute to the society in all possible ways” had filed application under Section 482 Cr.P.C in an ongoing case against one Sanjai Tiwari under Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988, seeking direction to Special Judge to expedite and conclude Special Trial. He, further, stated in his application that although FIR was lodged in 2006 but it got delayed by tactics opted by the accused persons. “The Vigilance Department completed the investigation after about 14 years and still the accused persons are trying to get away from the charges.”

On 09.09.2020, the High Court disposed of the said application directing the Court concerned “to expedite the proceedings of the aforesaid case and conclude the same, at the earliest possible, on day to day basis without granting any unnecessary adjournment to either of the parties, in accordance with law, provided there is no impediment.”


In order to answer the issue relating to locus of a third party to challenge the criminal proceedings or to seek relief in respect of criminal proceedings of accused, the Court referred to the judgment in Janata Dal vs. H.S. Chowdhary and others, (1993) 1 SCC 756, wherein it was held,

“Even if there are million questions of law to be deeply gone into and examined in a criminal case of this nature registered against specified accused persons, it is for them and them alone to raise all such questions and challenge the proceedings initiated against them at the appropriate time before the proper forum and not for third parties under the garb of public interest litigants.”

The Court further noticed that criminal trial where offences involved are under the Prevention of Corruption Act have to be conducted and concluded at the earliest since the offences under Prevention of Corruption Act are offences which affect not only the accused but the entire society and administration. It is also well settled that the High Court in appropriate cases can very well under Section 482 Cr.P.C. or in any other proceeding can always direct trial court to expedite the criminal trial and issue such order as may be necessary.

“A criminal trial of an accused is conducted in accordance with procedure as prescribed by the Criminal Procedure Code. It is the obligation of the State and the prosecution to ensure that all criminal trials are conducted expeditiously so that justice can be delivered to the accused if found guilty.”

However, in the present, the proceeding initiated by respondent No.2 did not appear to be a bona fide proceeding. He is in no way connected with initiation of criminal proceeding against the appellant.

“The present is not a case where prosecution or even the employer of the accused have filed an application either before the trial court or in any other court seeking direction as prayed by respondent No.2 in his application under Section 482 Cr.P.C.”

Hence, noticing that the respondent No.2 has no locus to file the application which was not clearly maintainable, the Court held that the impugned judgment of the Allahabad High Court dated 09.09.2020 cannot be sustained.

The Court, however, observed that it will be open for the trial court to expedite the criminal trial, the offences being the offences under the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988, subject to any order passed by the High Court in pending proceedings.

[Sanjai Tiwari v. State of Uttar Pradesh, 2020 SCC OnLine SC 1027, decided on 16.12.2020]

*Justice Ashok Bhushan has penned this judgment.

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Allahabad High Court: While deliberating over a matter concerning quashing of a non-bailable order issued by a subordinate court, Rahul Chaturvedi, J., issued directions for speedy completion of the trial and set a timeline for disposal of bail application in the present matter.

The applicant has prayed for the quashing of the impugned order dated 04-12-2019 and 29-01-2020 passed by the subordinate court of Addl. Civil Judge, Meerut in connection with the FIR registered for offences committed under Sections 457, 380 and 311 of the Penal Code, 1860. Counsel for the applicant, Sanjay Kr. Srivastava has contended that the applicant had obtained bail earlier but post the submission of charge-sheet, the applicant remained oblivious to the same. Consequently, a non-bailable warrant has been issued against the applicant via the aforementioned orders. Further, the applicant has expressed his willingness to appear before the Court.

The Court after perusal of the facts, circumstances and the arguments advanced observed that considering what has transpired in the present matter, it would only be appropriate for the subordinate court to extend the benefit of interim bail if it deems fit in accordance with the merits. As it is a well-settled position in law, if the applicant surrenders within 45 (forty-five) days before the court and subsequently if his bail application is filed then the same would be adjudicated and decided by the court with a speaking and reasoned order. The Court relied heavily on the judgment of the Supreme Court in the case of Hussain v. Union of India, (2017) 5 SCC 702, the relevant paragraphs of which have been quoted below for reference-

“Judicial service as well as legal service are not like any other services. They are missions for serving the society. The mission is not achieved if the litigant who is waiting in the queue does not get his turn for a long time”……. “Decision of cases of under-trials in custody is one of the priority areas. There are obstructions at every level in enforcement of right of speedy trial; vested interests or unscrupulous elements try to delay the proceedings”……. “In spite of all odds, determined efforts are required at every level for success of the mission”….. “The Presiding Officer of a court cannot rest in a state of helplessness. This is the constitutional responsibility of the State to provide necessary infrastructure and of the High Courts to monitor the functioning of subordinate courts to ensure timely disposal of cases.”

 In light of the above, the Court has issued the following instructions in the present matter-

(i) Bail applications be disposed of normally within one week,

(ii) Magisterial trials, where accused are in custody, be normally concluded within six months and sessions trials where accused are in custody be normally concluded within two years.

The Court also directed that no coercive action be taken against the applicant for a period of 45 days starting from the date of this order. Considering Supreme Court’s judgment in the case of Brahm Singh v. State of U.P., (1972) 3 SCC 388, the Court ruled that the concerned subordinate court(s) has to necessarily abide by the guidelines laid down in the aforementioned cases of Brahm Singh and Hussain.

With the following instructions, the present application has been disposed of by the Court.[Bittu v. State of Uttar Pradesh, 2020 SCC OnLine All 975, decided on 01-09-2020]

Legislation UpdatesNotifications

S.O. 4570(E).—In exercise of the powers conferred by section 435 of the Companies Act, 2013 (18 of 2013) (hereinafter referred to as the said Act), the Central Government, with the concurrence of the Chief Justices of the High Court of Uttarakhand, Nainital and High Court of Jammu and Kashmir, hereby designates the following Courts mentioned in column (2) of the Tables below as Special Courts, namely:-

(a) for the purpose of providing speedy trial of offences punishable with imprisonment of two years or more as per clause (a) of sub-section (2) of section 435 of the said Act, namely:-

Table 1

(b) for the purpose of providing speedy trial of other offences as mentioned in clause (b) of sub-section (2) of section 435 of the said Act, namely:-

Sl. No.




Jurisdiction as Special Court









Court of IV Additional District and Session Judge, Dehradun


State of Uttarakhand



Principal Sessions Judge, Leh


Union territory of Ladakh


Table 2

Sl. No.




Jurisdiction as Special Court









Court of II Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate, Dehradun

State of Uttarakhand


Sub-Judge/Special Mobile Magistrates, Jammu and Srinagar

Union territory of Jammu and Kashmir


Chief Judicial Magistrate, Leh

Union territory of Ladakh

S.O. 4569(E).—In exercise of the powers conferred by sub-section (1) of section 435 of the Companies Act, 2013 (18 of 2013), the Central Government, with the concurrence of the Chief Justice of the High Court of Jammu and Kashmir, hereby makes the following amendments in the notification of the Government of India, Ministry of Corporate Affairs, number S.O. 1796(E), dated, the 18th May, 2016, published in the Gazette of India, Extraordinary, Part II, Section 3, Sub-section (ii), namely:-

In the said notification, in the Table, for serial number 1 and the entries relating thereto, the following shall be substituted, namely:-

Sl. No.


Existing Court


Jurisdiction as Special Court









Courts of Additional Sessions Judges Anti- corruption, Jammu and Srinagar


Union territory of Jammu and Kashmir”.


Ministry of Corporate Affairs

[Notification dt. 19-12-2019]

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Delhi High Court: A Single Judge Bench of the Delhi High Court comprising of Vinod Goyal, J, directed the trial court to expedite proceedings in a pending criminal case in exercise of it’s inherent powers under Section 482 of the CrPC.

The petitioners had approached the Court aggrieved by an inordinate delay in disposal of a criminal trial arising out of an FIR filed by the first petitioner’s late father for offences under Sections 419, 420, 468 and 471 r/w Section 34  IPC. The petitioners pointed out that out of 36 listed witnesses, the prosecution had not called forward even one. Further, it was stated that the matter had been dragged on for more than 17 years since the FIR. The counsel for the petitioners argued that justice delayed is justice denied.

The Court acknowledged that the right to a speedy trial is an indispensable extension of the right to liberty and right against arbitrary detention. The Counsel argued on the basis of landmark cases of Rattiram v. State of MP, (2012) 4 SCC 516 and Kartar Singh v. State of Punjab, (1994) 3 SCC 569 among others to establish the Supreme Court’s stand on the right to speedy trial.

The Court took careful note of the circumstances, namely, that the trial had not commenced even though the charge-sheet was filed on 17.08.2001. The petition was hence, disposed of with the direction to the ACMM (North), Rohini Court, Delhi, before whom the trial was pending to make all endeavors necessary and at his command to record the prosecution evidence and conduct expeditious trial. The petition was disposed of accordingly. [Bir Singh v. State of NCT of Delhi, 2017 SCC OnLine Del 10919, decided on 18.09.2017]