Cannabis Leaves and Seeds excluded from the definition of ‘Ganja’ if when not accompanied by flowering and fruiting tops: Karnataka High Court

The Karnataka High Court observed under Justice K. Natarajan in Rangappa v. State by Basavapatna PS(Criminal Petition No. 11678 of 2022) that only the leaves and seeds not accompanied then it cannot be considered as Ganja. In order to exclude the definition of Ganja, the seeds and leaves shall not accompany the tops and fruits.


The case of prosecution is that on the suo moto complaint by the respondent-police on 21.03.2019, the case was registered. It is alleged that when the police officer Devaraj T.V. was in the CEN Police Station, he got credible information that some persons selling ganja in the jurisdiction of Basavapatna police station. Immediately, he recorded first information and registered FIR against unknown person and he along with police staff, apprehended the accused Nos.1 and 2. When they searched the accused, they found that the accused were in possession of 750 grams of Ganja and the same was seized under the panchanama in the presence of panchas. After investigation, charge sheet came to be filed against the accused persons, which is under challenge. The petitioner has contended that as per the seizure panchanama, the seized material is not ganja, which has only leaves and seeds totally 750 grams, therefore, it does not fall under the definition of Section 2(iii)(b) of NDPS Act. The seized material cannot be considered as ganja in order to bring under the 4 provisions of the NDPS Act. Therefore, prayed for quashing the criminal proceedings. In support of his arguments, the learned counsel for the petitioner has relied upon the judgment of Mehaboob Daula @ Daula and others Vs. The State of Karnataka and another.


It was noted that “If we read the definition, ganja which excludes the seeds and leaves, contains flowering or fruiting tops of cannabis plant. In the complaint especially seizure panchanama, which reveals that the bag in possession of the petitioner looked like a leaf, but it contained the flower, fruiting top, leaves and seeds. Considering the same, it not only contains the seeds and leaves, but also accompanying the flowering and fruiting tops. Therefore, 6 the material seized is containing flowering and fruiting tops accompanying the seeds and leaves which amounts to Ganja i.e., the leave and seed accompanied with flowering or fruiting tops of the cannabis plant. It falls under ganja.”


The opinion of FSL indicates the positive of ganja. The trial Court has also examined three witnesses. Considering the facts, the contention of the petitioner that the seized quantity of ganja will not fall under the definition of ganja under Section 2(iii) (b) of the NDPS Act, cannot be acceptable.

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