'Punishment harsher for drug sellers than users'

Delhi HC has ruled that recovery of a 500 gm substance would not invite the stringent provisions of NDPS Act.

india Updated: Jun 06, 2006 19:34 IST

Even as Rahul faces charges of drug abuse, the Delhi High Court has ruled that recovery of a 500 gm substance which contains a mere 5.1 per cent heroin would not invite the stringent provisions of NDPS Act to convict a person for 10 years.

Interpreting the various provisions of the Act, Justice Badar Durrez Ahmed granted bail to Mahesh Pal Singh, who was earlier arrested and incarcerated since August 28, 2002 for being in possession of heroin.

Under Section 21 (C) read with Section 37 of the NDPS Act any person found to be in possession of the narcotics and psychotropic substances for the purpose of making commercial use of the same is liable for conviction upto a maximum of 10 years with a fine which may extend upto Rs 1 lakh.

Whereas under the Act a person in possession of the banned substance which is intended for personal use may face a lesser punishment of imprisonment upto three years.

Apart from the weight of the total substance, it would be necessary to examine the purity levels of the ingredient to arrive at a conclusion as to whether a person is involved in trading the material or was a buyer for self consumption, Justice Ahmed observed while granting bail to the accused.

Chemical analysis of the 500 gm material seized from the accused revealed that that the substance contained 5.1 per cent of diacetylmorphine (heroin) following which the officials invoked Section 21 and 37 of the NDPS act to seek his prosecution.

First Published: Jun 06, 2006 19:34 IST