The Delhi High Court has quashed an FIR registered against a Canadian resident, who was caught with three live ammunition during his physical checking at the airport here, subject to the payment of costs of Rs 30,000. Justice Jasmeet Singh said that the law required “conscious possession or knowledge of the possession” of ammunition for prosecution under the Arms Act and in the present case, the presence of ammunition in the petitioner's jacket was a “mishap”.
The judge noted that the petitioner—who claimed to have worn the jacket after a long time — has a valid arms license and the live ammunition “remained” in his jacket. “In view of the aforesaid, the FIR 33/2022 dated 25.01.2022 registered at PS IGI Airport under Section 30 Arms Act and all consequential proceedings emanating therefrom are hereby quashed subject to the petitioner paying costs of Rs. 30,000/- to DLSA (Delhi State Legal Services Authority),” said the court in a recent order.
“The above judgments require conscious possession or knowledge of the possession. The petitioner has been able to make out a case that he was not conscious of the possession of the live ammunition. It was a mishap that the live ammunition remained in his jacket and he came to the airport with the same jacket. He has produced a valid arms license and the status report records the same,” the court said.
The Petitioner submitted that he hailed from Pilibhit, Uttar Pradesh but was a permanent resident of Canada and he came to India for visiting his family members. While going back to Toronto, Canada, he wore an old jacket without checking the same thoroughly as he was in a rush to reach the airport. He sought to quash the FIR registered earlier this year on the ground that he was not in conscious possession of the alleged ammunition found during the physical check as he wore the jacket after a very long time.