A SPECIAL court has rejected a plea from the Crime Branch of the Mumbai Police, seeking to retest the seized white crystal substance in the 2015 alleged mephedrone haul case. Two forensic tests had shown the substance to be ajinomoto and not mephedrone, as was claimed by police while arresting seven, including six police personnel, in 2015.
Last week, the Crime Branch moved a plea before the court seeking a retest stating that one of the accused, constable Dharmaraj Kalokhe, in whose possession 111 kg of the substance was allegedly found, had not given a “satisfactory explanation” as to why he possessed such a high quantity of ajinomoto. Last week, Chief Public Prosecutor Jaising Desai had submitted to the court that considering the gravity of the case, permission is being sought for a retest.
Additional Sessions Judge Justice M S Mungale, however, asked how it was maintainable for the police to seek another retest.
The court, in its order, said there was no provision for the police to seek a third test, in view of the previous Supreme Court judgments, including one which states that a final report is to be submitted within 15 days of receiving a forensic report in such matters. The court said a report from the Central Forensic Science Laboratory (CFSL), Chandigarh, was received in March.
In 2015, police had allegedly recovered 111 kg mephedrone from Kalokhe’s cupboard following which it arrested his co-accused and alleged drug peddler, Baby Patankar.
Their arrests were followed by the arrest of five police personnel, including the then Inspector Suhas Gokhale, on charges of harbouring Patankar.