Court awards 11 years RI, ` 2 lakh fine to Narco Smuggler

JAMMU, AUG 21: Second Additional Sessions Judge Jammu, Pawan Dev Kotwal today awarded 11 years rigorous imprisonment and fine of `2 lakh to Punjab based narco smuggler from whose possession 425 Kg poppy straw was recovered.
While awarding sentence to Ravinder Singh, son of Gurnam Singh, R/O 113/1 Hargovind Nagar, Jalandhar, Punjab, the 2nd Additional Sessions Judge Jammu, Pawan Dev Kotwal after hearing APP KA Qazi for the State and Advocate Prince Khanna appearing for the accused observed that huge quantity of 425 kilograms of poppy-straw is found in the possession of accused and record on file shows that some other case under NDPS Act was also pending against him at Kapoorthala in Punjab, which are the circumstances not warranting any lenient view and may require maximum sentence to be imposed especially keeping in view the menace of drugs and psychotropic substances reaching alarming situations, but at the same time it is also true that the accused faced trial for about five years and though, the detention already undergone by him has to be set off against the total sentence to be imposed, but a prolonged trial itself causes physical, mental and financial suffering to under-trial which is one of the mitigating circumstance for the purposes of quantum of sentence. Likewise, the accused as per his own statement recorded under section 342 CrPC is middle aged person i.e. 40 years old and obviously has family to look after as also submitted by him and argued by his counsel, which is again a circumstance warranting not to award maximum sentence.
With these observations, the Court awarded rigorous imprisonment for 11 years and fine to the tune of `2 lakh. In case of default of payment of fine, the accused shall undergo further rigorous imprisonment for two years. JNF