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Rahul Mahajan granted bail
June 14, 2006 16:59 IST
Last Updated: June 14, 2006 20:49 IST
Nine days after his arrest for alleged drug abuse, Rahul Mahajan was on Wednesday granted bail by a special court with the prosecution having failed to prove his involvement in "systematic and organised drug trafficking" or for possessing a commercial quantity of contraband.
Special Judge Swarna Kanta directed the late Bharatiya Janata Party leader Pramod Mahajan's son to furnish a personal bond of Rs 2 lakh and a surety of the like amount, and ordered him not to leave Delhi without its permission till the chargesheet was filed.
Rejecting the contention that Rahul was involved in financing the contraband, the court said, "The investigating agency was not able to distinguish between financing through one single transaction for personal consumption and a series of financial transactions."
"At this stage, it prima facie appears that a single transaction is being stretched in the facts of the case to fall in the ambit of a series of transactions as to take the case under Section 27A of the NDPS Act. This cannot be legally acceptable," the court added.
Rahul was arrested on June 5 under the NDPS Act after his admission to Apollo Hospital in a critical condition early on June 2 because of suspected drug abuse.
His companion Vivek Maitra, Pramod Mahajan's key aide, was declared dead on arrival due to respiratory system failure caused by the combined effects of heroin, cocaine, opioid alkaloids and ethyl alcohol.
While it was clear that Rahul, Maitra and Sahil Zaroo had consumed heroin that night, ordered and paid for by Maitra, the court said, "Unfortunately, the crucial facts and truth may not ever come to surface due to the death of Maitra."
Among the stringent conditions imposed on Rahul while granting him bail, the court ordered him to surrender his passport and not to leave the country without its permission, besides directing him to not tamper with the evidence and not approach the witnesses in any manner.
The continual hesitation of the prosecution with regard to the quantity of the drug allegedly involved in the case did not escape the court's notice, which went in Rahul's favour.
"The prosecution shifted its stand of the quantity being 7 grams from 5 grams of heroin as per the disclosure statement of Sahil. It seems to be an afterthought," the court said.
When Rahul was produced for the first time in court on June 6, Delhi police had stated that the quantity of the drug involved was 5 grams, but later said that as per Sahil's disclosure, the quantity was 7 grams.
The police also relied upon Sahil's confessional statement to prove that the money for the contraband was paid by Maitra at Rahul's instance, which, however, the court did not accept as it was inadmissible in law.
The court also took into consideration the fact that nothing incriminating was found in the electronically-operated locker, which was in the room where the incident took place.
While noting that Rahul had clean antecedents, the court said his blood sample report clearly showed he had consumed heroin, and said, "It seems that he needs professional help for being rehabilitated."
In a related development, Special Judge S N Gupta will consider on Thursday co-accused Sahil's bail plea, as also a prosecution application for conducting narco-analysis and brain-mapping tests on Rahul.