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Thursday, October 22, 2020

Drug case: Delhi HC issues notice to WhatsApp

The court was hearing bail petitions filed by two co-accused in a case registered by New Usmanpur police station after the recovery of 25 grams of ‘smack’ from the main accused.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi | Updated: October 4, 2020 11:05:40 am
Delhi high court, Delhi high court funds, recruitment for delhi district courts, delhi district court, delhi news, indian expressThe HC was earlier told that the recruitment process initiated for various posts has come to a “grinding halt” due to the lack of financial sanctions from the Delhi government. (File)

THE DELHI High Court has issued a notice to WhatsApp after it was told by the Delhi Police that the California-based company was not responding to its queries about call and chat details of accused persons it suspects to be suppliers of “illegal smack” in the capital.

The court was hearing bail petitions filed by two co-accused in a case registered by New Usmanpur police station after the recovery of 25 grams of ‘smack’ from the main accused. Delhi Police has told the court the accused are mass suppliers of “illegal smack” in Delhi and there are several WhatsApp calls which connect four accused in the case. The accused also had a WhatsApp group for exchange of various messages, the court was told.

As per a status report filed before the court, WhatsApp was issued a notice by Delhi Police on July 25 for the purpose of seeking “registrant details” of certain WhatsApp numbers, details of groups, calls, chats and other details. A reminder was sent to the company on September 11 but to no avail. The accused have argued mere details of call records do not establish they were necessarily speaking about supply of drugs and that the statement of a co-accused cannot form the sole basis for their arrest under law.

Justice Pratibha M Singh, in an order, said as the case requires further investigation, call detail records and chat details between the accused would be relevant for the purpose of ascertaining if they were involved in supply and distribution of drugs.

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