This Judgement clarifies the jurisdiction of the State Investigating Agency to investigate, remand, and commit a case for trial relating to the scheduled offenses under the National Investigation Agency (NIA) Act.
Brief Facts of the Case:
- Two appeals have been made against the judgment of the High Court of Judicature at Bombay dated 5 July 2018.
- In this case, an FIR was registered against two persons with the Anti-Terrorism Squad(ATS) in Mumbai on the basis of written information provided by a police inspector in Nanded alleging links of the Appellant with banned terrorist organizations.
- Further, the Appellant questioned the jurisdiction of the Additional Sessions Judge (ASJ), Nanded, challenging its order in the High Court of Judicature at Bombay.
Contentions of the Appellants:
The Appellant claimed that the State Investigating Agency divested its jurisdiction and breached the provisions of subsection (4) of section 6 of the NIA Act.
Contentions of the Respondents:
The Respondent construed the provisions of the NIA Act, stating that no vacuum shall exist in an investigation relating to offenses bearing on national security. Further, justifying the legality of the State Investigating Agency’s jurisdiction.
Principles and observations of the Court:
- The honorable court, in this case, dismissed the submission of the Appellant and stated that subsections (4), (5), (6), and (7) of section 6 of the NIA Act shall be read conjointly to dismiss ambiguity.
- It stated that the investigation of a case commences upon the action taken by the police upon intimation of an FIR and not on the mere recording of it.
- Further, it justified the legality of the investigation carried out by the ATS Nanded as a statutory mandate under the provisions of subsection (7) of section 6 of the NIA Act.
- Neither the investigation carried out by the ATS Nanded prior to that of NIA Mumbai, nor the submission of the charge sheet to the Chief Judicial Magistrate (CMJ), Nanded is affected by the provisions of subsection (1) of section 16 of the NIA Act.
- Both the CMJ Nanded and ASJ Nanded acted within their jurisdiction.
The Court affirmed the judgment and order of the High Court. It further stated that both CMJ, Nanded, and ASJ, Nanded were the designated Courts for the ATS Nanded.
In my opinion, the decision of the Court is correct. I completely agree with it. The decision of the Court has been delivered bearing on the national security of the nation.
Judgment Name: Naser Bin Abu Bakr Yafai vs. The State of Maharashtra & Anr.
Judgment Date: 20 October 2021
Bench: Dr. Dhananjaya Y Chandrachud, Vikram Nath, BV Nagarathna
Name of the writer: Meenal Songire
College: S.N.D.T. Law School, Mumbai