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SC notice to UP govt on state Congress chief's plea to quash Gangster Act proceedings

A bench of Justices Abhay S Oka and S V N Bhatti issued notice to the state government on the petition by Rai and others against the Allahabad High Court's order, rejecting their plea.
Last Updated : 25 June 2024, 13:29 IST

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New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday sought a response from the Uttar Pradesh government on plea by UP Congress Committee chief Ajai Rai and others for quashing criminal proceedings initiated against them under the Gangster Act.

A bench of Justices Abhay S Oka and S V N Bhatti issued notice to the state government on the petition by Rai and others against the Allahabad High Court's order, rejecting their plea.

The court also issued notice to the state government on an application for stay on the proceedings initiated under offences of the UP Gangsters and Anti-Social Activities (Prevention) Act 1986.

As Rai's counsel sought stay of the proceedings, the bench asked him to inform the trial court to inform about the pending proceedings before it.

The court fixed the matter for consideration on July 15.

Rai has unsuccessfully contested the Lok Sabha elections as a Congress party nominee from Varanasi parliamentary constituency against Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The proceedings against Rai and others under the stringent law were initiated with the filing of a charge sheet in 2011 on a complaint by an individual, alleging the accused had assaulted him.

The petitioners contended the provisions of section 3(1) of the Act cannot be invoked during the investigation of a complaint by a private person. They also said a compromise agreement had been reached between the petitioner and the informant on September 28, 2023 which should be considered for quashing the trial.

The Allahabad High Court had in May, this year dismissed the application filed by Rai and others to quash proceedings in the 2010 case by refusing to accept the compromise entered between the accused persons and the complainant.

"There is no statutory basis to quash the proceedings under Section 7 Criminal Law (Amendment) Act and Section 3(1) UP Gangster Act even after compromise between the complainant and accused-applicants for the offence under IPC," the HC had said.

The petitioners Ajai Rai, Santosh Rai, Chandra Bhushan Rai, Salil Dubey and Vijay Guru @ Vijay Kumar Pandey challenged the proceedings of sessions trial under Sections 147, 148, 448, 511, 323, 504, 506, 120B of the IPC, Section 7 of Criminal Law Amendment Act and Section 3(1) of UP Gangster and Anti Social Activities (Prevention) Act in the case registered at Chetganj Police Station in Varanasi.

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Published 25 June 2024, 13:29 IST

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