LAHORE: A special court for Control of Narcotics Substance (CNS) on Saturday dismissed the second bail petition of former law minister Rana Sanaullah Khan in 15kg heroin recovery case lodged by the Anti-Narcotics Force (ANF).
“The tentative assessment of material of the accused shows his connection with the commission of offence,” observed Presiding Judge Shakir Hassan in his verdict.
During the course of arguments, Advocate Zahid Bokhari, on behalf of Rana Sana, contended that the record provided by the Punjab Safe City Authority (PSCA) about the vehicle of the petitioner/accused negated the whole prosecution story. He said the arrest of the petitioner from Ravi Toll Plaza allegedly took place at 3:25pm while the vehicle could be seen in the CCTV footage on Canal Road within 10 minutes.
He said the facts contradicted the story narrated in the FIR about stopping the petitioner and others, knowing about their identity and other process.
The counsel argued that the record showed that the occurrence had not taken place as alleged by the prosecution and it was a case of further inquiry. He further said the petitioner was also a chronic cardiac patient and underwent open heart surgery.
ANF special prosecutor Rana Kashif Saleem opposed the petition and argued that no fresh ground for the bail was available to the petitioner. He said a duty judge had already dismissed the first bail petition of Rana Sana and he also withdrew his bail petition filed before the Lahore High Court.
The prosecutor argued that section 51 of the Control of Narcotics Substance Act 1997 also restrained grant of bail where the offence carried death penalty as punishment. He said a huge quantity of heroin had been recovered from the petitioner, therefore, no case for grant of bail was made out.
The judge observed that application for summoning the CCTV footage record of the PSCA was submitted in court much earlier even before the filing of the first bail petition. Therefore, he said, the ground of the video record was already available with the petitioner at the time of filing previous bail plea.
Even if it was presumed that the footage was provided by the authority later its appreciation would be tantamount to deeper appreciation of evidence which, the judge observed, could not be exercised at the stage of bail.
He noted that the medical ground had also been availed by the petitioner in the past and no fresh medical reports had been furnished with the new bail plea. Therefore, he said, the medical ground was also not available to the petitioner.
Judge Hassan remarked that the petitioner had already exhausted all his grounds available to him while no fresh ground was made out from the current submissions.
District & Sessions Judge Shakir Hassan recently assumed charge as presiding judge of the CNS court while a duty judge had been hearing the case on a temporary basis since sudden repatriation of D&SJ Masood Arshad on Aug 28. Judge Masood was stopped from working in the middle of hearing on the first bail petition by the PML-N leader.
Published in Dawn, November 10th, 2019