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Drugs case: Supreme Court tells Punjab not to act against Akali leader Bikram Majithia till January 31

Former Punjab Minister and senior Shiromani Akali Dal leader Bikram Singh Majithiain in Chandigarh. File photo

Former Punjab Minister and senior Shiromani Akali Dal leader Bikram Singh Majithiain in Chandigarh. File photo

Chief Justice of India N.V. Ramana on Thursday said political leaders approaching courts seemed to be due to “election virus,” while dealing with an urgent request made by Shiromani Akali Dal leader Bikram Singh Majithia to speedily list his appeal for anticipatory bail in a case registered under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act.

Assembly elections are due soon in five States, including Punjab.

Senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi, for Mr. Majithia, during the mentioning, said the case was one of political vendetta.

The Punjab and Haryana High Court had recently dismissed his plea for anticipatory bail.

“I do not know if this is election fever or election virus. Everyone is rushing to the courts now,” the CJI addressed Mr. Rohatgi in a light-hearted manner.

The court listed the case for January 31 and told the State not to take any coercive action against him till then.

Senior advocate P. Chidambaram, for the State, said Mr. Majithia had gone into hiding.

“Tell your State not to do anything. We are listing this on Monday,” the court addressed Mr. Chidambaram.

Mr. Majithia was booked under the NDPS Act on December 20 last year and moved the High Court seeking anticipatory bail.

The former Punjab Minister was booked under the NDPS Act on the basis of a 2018 report of a probe into a drugs racket operating in the State.

Mr. Majithia was booked under Sections 25 (punishment for allowing one’s premises for its use for the commission of an offence), 27A (for financing sale, purchase, production, manufacture, possession, transportation, use or consumption, import and export or any act pertaining to narcotics) and 29 (abetting or plotting an offence) of the NDPS Act.


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Printable version | May 26, 2022 5:17:09 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/drugs-case-no-coercive-action-against-majithia-till-jan-31-supreme-court-tells-punjab-govt/article38332654.ece