Jharkhand: CCA imposed on ED witness in illegal mining case revoked, High Court directs action against Home Secretary


The Jharkhand High Court heard the criminal writ petition filed by Ashok Yadav, a witness of the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in the illegal mining case of more than 1000 crores. A division bench of Justice S Chandrasekhar and Justice Ratnakar Bhengra quashed the order to impose CCA after hearing the side of the applicant and the state government. Declaring the CCA illegal, the bench ordered the immediate release of the applicant.

The bench said that the state government has delayed considering the application of Ashok Yadav, which is not correct. The court made strong remarks against the departmental minister and the home secretary and said, the minister has given his approval to the joint secretary’s proposal without thinking. The court said: Departmental action should be taken against the Home Secretary. It is noteworthy that Vandana Dadel was in charge of the Home Secretary at the time when this matter pertains.

ED’s witness is Ashok Yadav:

Ashok Yadav was put under house arrest in the year 2022 under CCA. He was banned under the Crime Control Act (CCA) till December 15 on the recommendation of the Superintendent of Police and Deputy Commissioner of Sahibganj. Ashok Yadav was arrested on July 30 in the case registered at Sahibganj Muffsil police station in connection with the firing on Dahu Yadav’s ship.

There are half a dozen cases on him, which are related to illegal mining, electricity theft and Arms Act etc. He is a resident of Samda Nala located in Sakrigali under Mufasil police station area of ​​Sahibganj. During the investigation of money laundering case related to illegal mining, ED raided 20 locations of CM’s MLA representative Pankaj Mishra and his associates in Sahibganj on July 8, 2022. Rs 5.32 crore cash was recovered in the raid.

ED had prepared the seizure list. Then Ashok Yadav had signed on the seizure list of ED as a witness. During the hearing, the bench said that the records show that the departmental minister gave approval without thinking about the proposal prepared by the joint secretary. It was an irresponsible act of the Departmental Secretary in going ahead with the proposal prepared by the Joint Secretary, seriously eroding a valuable constitutional right of the detainee.

The bench held the order of cancellation of Ashok Yadav’s application on December 15, 2022 illegal. It is notable that Ashok Yadav, who was arrested under CCA, had given an application to the Home Department. It was said in it that the action taken against him is tainted with malice. There is no evidence against him, which was dismissed.

The working style of the Secretary is a reflection of negligence towards duty and lack of dedication towards duty.

The bench has said in its 15-page decision that on November 3, 2022, the application of prisoner Ashok Yadav was received by the Home Department and on December 2, the file was placed before the departmental minister. No explanation has also been given by the Home Secretary for the delay of 29 days. This style of functioning of the Secretary is reflective of dereliction of duty and lack of devotion to duty, making out a case for initiation of departmental proceedings against him.

Referring to the Supreme Court’s judgment in ‘Uttar Pradesh vs. Neeraj Awasthi’, the bench said that the power to be exercised by the state government under the Crime Control Act (CCA) is a statutory power, which can only be exercised by the authority concerned. is, not by any other authority.


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