Drug peddlers are hazardous to society at large and to youth in particular, observed a special NDPS court while awarding ten years imprisonment to a man found in possession of contraband at Mumbai international airport in 2004. Ebrahim Ali Khan (53) was found guilty under various provisions of the NDPS Act and Customs Act by Special Judge AA Joglekar and sentenced to 10 years in jail and also fined Rs 1 lakh.
“The proved offence against the accused is certainly a social menace. such illicit trafficking, such drug peddlers and traffickers are hazards to the entire society at large in general and youths in particular,” the judge noted.
“Law demands that such sinner and perpetrator of the crime are to be dealt with by the required degree of deterrence, proportionate to the severity of the offence committed by him. The seized contraband would have been certainly circulated amongst the venerable section of the society, but for its timely capture by the officers,” the court order further said.
Considering the nature of the offence and the threat it causes to the health and social security of the public, and its adverse effect on the economic, cultural and social foundation of the society, the accused doesn’t deserve “lenient and liberal” consideration, the court observed.
As per the prosecution, the Air Intelligence Unit of Customs had received information that a passenger, flying from Mumbai to Muscat in Oman and then to Dubai, was carrying drugs in his baggage to smuggle it out of the country. The passenger, who was placed under surveillance, was apprehended by customs officials while he was proceeding for immigration check, and a search of his baggage led to seizure of drugs and cash totalling Rs 68,500.
A subsequent probe revealed Khan had gone abroad nearly 30 times between April 2003 and June 2004. Seven witnesses, including customs officials, were examined during the course of the trial.