Sunday 16 May 2021

Whether court should release the accused prosecuted under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act for paying extortion money to a terrorist organization on bail?

  While considering the grant of bail under Section 43

(5) D, it is the bounden duty of the Court to apply its

mind to examine the entire material on record for the

purpose of satisfying itself, whether a prima facie case is

made out against the accused or not. We have gone

through the material on record and are satisfied that the

Appellant is entitled for bail and that the Special Court

and High Court erred in not granting bail to the Appellant

for the following reasons:

(A) A close scrutiny of the material placed before the

Court would clearly shows that the main

accusation against the Appellant is that he paid

levy / extortion amount to the terrorist

organization. Payment of extortion money does

not amount to terror funding. It is clear from the

supplementary charge-sheet and the other

material on record that other accused who are

members of the terrorist organization have been

systematically collecting extortion amounts from

businessmen in Amrapali and Magadh areas. The

Appellant is carrying on transport business in the

area of operation of the organization. It is

alleged in the second supplementary chargesheet

that the Appellant paid money to the

members of the TPC for smooth running of his

business. Prima facie, it cannot be said that the

Appellant conspired with the other members of

the TPC and raised funds to promote the


(B) Another factor taken into account by the Special

Court and the High Court relates to the allegation

of the Appellant meeting the members of the

terror organization. It has been held by the High

Court that the Appellant has been in constant

touch with the other accused. The Appellant has

revealed in his statement recorded under Section

164 Cr.PC that he was summoned to meet A-14

and the other members of the organization in

connection with the payments made by him.

Prima facie, we are not satisfied that a case of

conspiracy has been made out at this stage only

on the ground that the Appellant met the

members of the organization.

(C) An amount of Rs. 9,95,000/- (Rupees Nine Lakh

and Ninety-Five Thousand only) was seized from

the house of the Appellant which was accounted

for by the Appellant who stated that the amount

was withdrawn from the bank to pay salaries to

his employees and other expenses. We do not

agree with the prosecution that the amount is

terror fund. At this stage, it cannot be said that

the amount seized from the Appellant is

proceeds from terrorist activity. There is no

allegation that Appellant was receiving any

money. On the other hand, the Appellant is

accused of providing money to the members of

TPC. {Para 11}

12. After a detailed examination of the contentions of

the parties and scrutiny of the material on record, we are

not satisfied that a prima facie case has been made out

against the Appellant relating to the offences alleged

against him. We make it clear that these findings are

restricted only for the purpose of grant of bail to the

Appellant and the trial court shall not be influenced by

these observations during trial.




Criminal Appeal Nos . 314-315 of 2021

Sudesh Kedia Vs  Union of India 


Dated: April 09, 2021.

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