The Delhi High Court has recently stated that if a couple are both consumers of narcotic substances and drugs are found in their shared bedroom, both can be held liable. Justice Jasmeet Singh emphasized that even if the drugs were recovered at the husband's instance since they were found in their joint living space, the liability cannot be solely pinned on the husband [Dixita Golwala vs Narcotics Control Bureau].
The case involved a couple allegedly linked to a drug syndicate operating via a messaging app. Drugs were discovered at their residence and the husband's office in 2021.
The Court noted that since both husband and wife were drug consumers and shared a special relationship, it could be inferred that both were aware of the drugs in their bedroom and were in possession of them.
The Court also addressed the recovery of drugs from the husband's office, clarifying that as the office premises were separated by a staircase and the couple had separate floors for their offices, the recovery couldn't be attributed to the wife.
Regarding mobile chats, the Court stated that the woman had the potential to deal in larger quantities but clarified that "potential" alone wouldn't fall under Section 37 of the NDPS Act.
Despite potential dealing, the Court granted bail to the woman considering her not a flight risk, and had no fear of evidence tampering or witness influencing.
Author: Anushka Taraniya
News Writer, MIT ADT University