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How can this verdict be a setback for the government … Adv. Mukund P Unni writes

The scrolls are already going on in the channels as a setback to the state government and the crime branch. However, it is a fact that the High Court judgment has not been released yet. One thing is for sure, this verdict cannot be said to be a setback from the media reports coming out.

Let us first examine why the FIR has now been canceled.

The first FIR of the Crime Branch is to probe the authenticity of the voice clip of Swapna Suresh, the accused in the gold smuggling case, who said that the enforcement officials were forcing him to lie against the Chief Minister and other ministers. The FIR alleges serious offenses against enforcement officers. Some of these include incitement, conspiracy, and forgery.

The Crime Branch had registered a second FIR alleging that Sandeep Nair, another accused, was being forced by some enforcement officials to record a false statement.

Both the FIRs were questioned in the Enforcement High Court. Those FIRs were quashed by the single bench of the High Court considering the need for enforcement. So many things are true.

However, this was canceled citing a legal technical issue. It should be noted that the seriousness of the allegation still exists.

Section 195 (1) (b) of the CrPC stipulates that the offense of presenting false evidence and other offenses should be investigated only with the permission of the court hearing the case. Such matters cannot be approached by filing a separate FIR. This is what the High Court pointed out.

The High Court has specifically said that all these can be considered with the permission of the special court where the enforcement cases are pending. Sandeep Nair’s statement under section 161 was kept in court in a sealed cover. On the basis of this, the court points out that there are issues in it that should be left to the consideration of the Enforcement Special Court.

It is not right to misinterpret the present verdict as a setback to the government. Today’s verdict means that there are serious issues and that they are not the only issues that the Crime Branch should file an FIR and investigate. It also means that enforcement is a matter for special investigation with the permission of a special court. How can that be a setback for the government? The headline was really meant to tighten the noose for enforcement.

(The author is a Supreme Court Advocate)

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