Apex court puts down norms to forbid adjournments of trials under NDPS Act
A Bench of Justices D k Jain and J S Khehar passed a slew of directives to ensure that the rights of accused to speedy trial is not diluted due to the existing lacuna in the trials conducted under Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act.
The court also called for the notification of a Code of Criminal Procedure provision prescribing stern rules against adjournments. “We direct that no NDPS court would grant adjournments at the request of a party except where the circumstances are beyond the control of the party. This must be treated as an exception... Adherence to this principle would go a long way...,” it said while incorporating a suggestion by amicus curiae Anita Shenoy.
It directed courts to return to the “erstwhile” method of holding session’s trials and examining witnesses on consecutive days over a “block period” of 3-4 days. The court said that those accused in NDPS cases should be given chargesheets and other documents in electronic form.
The Bench passed several directives for putting in place required infrastructure and engaging trained manpower for swift trials. “Each state, in consultation with the High Court is directed to establish Special Courts to deal
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