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Framing charge(s) without sanction is illegal

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10th-Feb-2018       
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(From previous issue) :
36. In this particular case the learned Metropolitan Sessions Judge, Dhaka having no prior sanction from the Government took cognizance of the case and eventually framed charge against the accused petitioner. Thus the learned Metropolitan Sessions Judge, Dhaka had acted illegally in taking cognizance of the Case without the prior sanction of the Government, as per provision of Section 40(2) of the Santrash Birodhi Ain, 2009 and, as such, the order of taking cognizance is illegal and it has vitiated the subsequent proceedings of the case. But we are of the opinion that the learned Metropolitan Sessions Judge, Dhaka is not de-barred from taking fresh cognizance of the case against the accused if he gets or obtains a valid and legal sanction from the Government for taking cognizance of the case and finds prima facie case.
37. In this connection it is, pertinent to be reiterated that a criminal offence never abates or destroyed."
13. In the instant case after taking evidence of three witnesses the trial Judge wrote to the Government on 3-4-2013 for sanction and during pendency of the Rule on 30-4-2016 Government gave sanction to proceed with the case.  However, the accused petitioners by filing an affidavit annexing the latest order of the Court intimated the Court that said order has not been communicated to, the concerned Court as yet.
14. In the instant case charge has been frame against the accused petitioners under Sections. 8/9/10 of the Santrash Birodhi Odhadesh, 2008 Sections 8, 9 and 10 of the  Santrash Birocihi Odhadesh 2008 run as follows:
“৮ । নিষিদ্ধ সংগঠনের সদস্যপদ। Ñযদি কোন ব্যক্তি ধারা ১৮ এর অধীন কোন নিষিদ্ধ সংগঠনের সদস্য হন বা সদস্য বলিয়া দাবি করেন, তাহা হইলে তিনি অপরাধ সংঘটন করিবেন এবং উক্তরূপ আপরাধ সংঘটনের জন্য তিনি অনধিক ছয়  মাস পর্যন্ত যে কোন মেয়াদের কারাদন্ড, অথবা অর্থদন্ড, অথবা উভয় দ-ে দ-িত হইবেন।
৯। নিষিদ্ধ সংগঠন সমর্থনÑ(১) যদি কোন ব্যক্তি ধারা ১৮ এর অধীন কোন নিষিদ্ধ সংগঠনকে সমর্থন করিবার উদ্দেশ্যে কাহাকেও অনুরোধ বা আহবান করেন, অথবা নিষিদ্ধ সংগঠনকে সমর্থন বা উহার কর্মকান্ডকে গতিশীল ও উৎসাহিত করিবার উদ্দেশ্যে কোন সভা আয়োজন, পরিচালনা বা পরিচালনায় সহায়তা করেন, অথবা বক্তৃতা প্রদান করেন, তাহা হইলে তিনি অপরাধ সংঘটন করিবেন।
(২) যদি কোন ব্যক্তি কোন নিষিদ্ধ সংগঠনের জন্য সমর্থন চাহিয়া অথবা উহার কর্মকা-কে সক্রিয় করিবার  উদ্দেশ্যে কোন সভায় বক্তৃতা করেন অথবা রেডিও, টেলিভিশন অথবা  মুদ্রণ বা ইলেকট্রনিক মাধ্যমে কোন তথ্য সম্প্রচার করেন, তাহা হইলে তিনি অপরাধ সংঘঠন করিবেন।
(৩) যদি কোন ব্যক্তি উপ-ধারা (১) অথবা (২) এর অধীন কোন অপরাধে দোষী সাব্যস্ত হন, তাহা হইলে তিনি অনধিক সাত বৎসর ও অন্যূন দুই বৎসর পর্যন্ত যে কোন মেয়াদের কারাদন্ডে দন্ডিত হইবেন এবং ইহার অতিরিক্ত র্থদন্ড ও আরোপ করা যাইবে।
১০। আপরাধ সংঘটনে ষড়যন্ত্র (পৎরসরহধষ পড়হংঢ়রৎধপু) শাস্তি। যদি কোন ব্যক্তি এই আইনের অধীন অপরাধ সংঘটনের ষড়যন্ত্র করেন, তাহা হইলে তিনি উক্ত অপরাধের জন্য নির্ধারিত সর্বোচ্চ শাস্তির দুই তৃতীয়াংশ মেয়াদের যে কোন কারাদন্ডে, অথবা অর্থদন্ডে, অথবা উভয় দন্ডে দন্ডিত হইবেন; এবং যদি উক্ত অপরাধের জন্য নির্ধারিত শাস্তি মৃত্যুদন্ড হয়, তাহা হইলে অপরাধের শাস্তি যাবজ্জীবন কারাদন্ড অথবা অনূর্ধ্ব চোদ্দ বৎসরের কারাদন্ড হইবে কিন্ত উহা পাঁচ বৎসরের কম হইবে না।”
15. On a careful scrutiny of the FIR and the chargesheet it is very difficult to hold that sufficient ingridents of sections 8 and 9 of the Odhadesh, 2008 are present to bring charge against the accused-petitioners.
16. However, if the trial starts from the stage of taking cognizance afresh as the Government has given Sanction for prosecution of the accused persons in view of the above reported case and the accused petitioners are found guilty under the above provisions of law in that case they may have to be sentenced for imprisonment for 6 (six) months under Section 7, 7 (seven years) under Section 8, and S-2/2-1 (two and a half years) under Section 9 of the Odhadesh, 2008. But fact remains that the accused petitioners have been langushing in jail since 17-6-2009, that is they have already suffered in jail in excess to the period of proposed highest sentence.
17. The accused petitioners have been languishing in jail without trial for no fault of them and that for the negligence and laches of the prosecution as well as the Government they can not be suffered.
18. Having considered the above facts and circumstances, we are of the view that the continuation of the present proceeding will be nothing but a sheer abuse of the process of the Court and order of framing charge without sanction is illegal and without jurisdiction and, as such, the impugned proceeding is liable to be quashed.
19. Thus, we find merit in both the Rules and the Rules are made absolute.
20. Accordingly, the impugned order No. 18 dated 2-4-2012 passed by the learned Additional Sessions Judge: Chapainawabgonj in Sessions Case No.138 of 2010 corresponding to GR Case No. 44 of 2009 (Bhola) arising out of Bholahat Police Station Case No.05, dated 17-62009 framing charge under Sections 8, 9, 10 of the Santrash Berodhi Odhadesh, 2008 against the accused petitioners without any sanction from the Government and therefore the present proceedings so far as it relates to the present accused petitioner is hereby quashed. The accused petitioner be released from jail hajat immediately, if not wanted in any other case.
21. In the instant case we find gross negligence on the part of the Government in giving decision on sanction matter to prosecute the accused persons. The trial Judge on 30-4-2013 wrote to the Government for the sanction and the Government ultimatly gave sanction on 30-4-2016 though till date the same has not been communicated to the Court concerned.
22. In view of the above facts, we direct the Secretary, Cabinet Division, Government of Bangladesh to make (In inquiry as to the reasons for delay in giving sanction for prosecution of the accused persons and to take action against the concerned persons who was/ were responsible for such delay and negligence and intimate the compliance thereof to this Court-Communicate a copy of this judgment and order at once to the Court concerned as well as 1. Secretary, Cabinet Division and 2. Secretary Ministary of Home Affiers, Government of Bangladesh for necessary compliance.
(Concluded)

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