Additional Sessions Judge Madhu Jain absolved Nazir Ahmed Khan, 42, of various charges under the Explosive Substances Act, noting that the police had failed to take mandatory sanction for prosecution of the accused from the competent authority.
Delhi Police, which had made a last-ditch effort to undo the lapse by obtaining the sanction from the divisional commissioner as mandated under the Explosive Substances Act, failed to impress upon the court.
The court in its judgment allowed a contention by defence counsel M S Khan that the police had failed to take mandatory sanction for prosecution of the accused from the competent authority (district magistrate/divisional commissioner) under the act.
According to the defence counsel, the mandatory sanction was a condition precedent of the trial but in this case the prosecution took the sanction from commissioner of police, which was invalid. The court gave Khan the benefit of the lapses by the police officers.
Khan, a resident of Mendher in Jammu and Kashmir, was apprehended by Delhi Police's special cell on June 4, 2005, from Daryaganj following a tip off that a man would come from bus from Jammu and Kashmir with explosives.
The police allegedly recovered 490 gram of RDX from his possession and Rs 30,000 from his Loni residence in Ghaziabad.
In a similar case, a session's court had on January 22 acquitted Ayaz Ahmed Shah, a suspected Hizb-e-Islami militant, as the special cell of the Delhi police failed to take sanction for his prosecution on the charge of waging war against the country.
In that case, the trial was termed as illegal as the police had taken the sanction of government for prosecution of accused a day after the court took cognisance of the charges against him.
The police, however, had filed the fresh chargesheet against Shah, a resident of Anantnag, in April saying he was acquitted on technical ground and should be prosecuted again.