Md. Gias Uddin Al Mamun Vs. The State and another, 3 LNJ (2014) 140

Case No: Criminal Appeal No. 2609 of 2008

Judge: A. K. M. Asaduzzaman,

Court: High Court Division,,

Advocate: Md. Khurshid Alam Khan,Rafique-ul-Huq,,

Citation: 3 LNJ (2014) 140

Case Year: 2014

Appellant: Md. Gias Uddin Al Mamun

Respondent: The State and another

Subject: Corruption, Notice,

Delivery Date: 2012-08-30


HIGH COURT DIVISION
(CRIMINAL APPELLATE JURISDICTION)
 
A. K. M. Asaduzzaman, J
And
Abu Taher Md. Saifur Rahman, J.

Judgment on
30th August, 2012.
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Md. Gias Uddin Al Mamun
... Appellant.
Vs.
The State and another
... Respondents
 
 
Anti Corruption Commission Act (V of 2004)
Section 26
Admittedly, there was no Commission from 7-02-2007 to 24-02-2007 but the notice was issued on 18-02-2007 when the Commission was not in existence and hence the Special Case No. 1 of 2008 was proceeded against the appellant on an invalid notice resulting thereby the impugned judgment is void. . . .(11)

Anti-Corruption Commission Vs. Mohiuddin Khan Alamgir, 62 DLR (AD) 290 ref.
 
Mr. Rafiq-ul Huq with
Mr. Shah Manjurul Huq and
Ms. Delwara Khandaker, Advocate.
.... For the appellant.

Mr. Md. Khurshid Alam Khan,
.... For the respondent No. 2.

Criminal Appeal No. 2609 of 2008
 
JUDGMENT
A.K.M. Asaduzzaman, J.

This appeal was preferred against the judgment and order dated 27.03.2008 passed by the Special Judge, Special Court  No. 7, Dhaka in Special Case No. 01 of 2008 convicting the Appellant under section 27(1) of the Anti-Corruption Commission Ain, 2004 and sentencing him to suffer rigorous imprisonment for 10 years with a fine of Tk. 10 lacs, in default to suffer rigorous imprisonment for 1(one) year more and confiscating the properties of the appellant and his dependents in favour of the State.

Prosecution case, in short inter alia, is that the respondent No. 2 issued a notice contained in Memo No. Dudok/70-2007(Anu-2)/654 dated 18.02.2007 under the signature of the secretary of the Anti-Corruption Commission directing the appellant to submit the statement or assets or his own and the statement of assets of his family members including his wife, son and daughter within 72 hours from the time of receipt of the said Notice. Thereafter the respondent lodged an FIR before the Cantonment

Police Station stating inter alia that the accused petitioner acquired movable and immovable property valued at Tk. 62,21,99,545/- (Sixty two crores twenty one lacs ninety nine thousands five hundred and forty five) which is inconsistent with the known source of his income; hence the case.
 
On 08.05.2007 Md. Ibrahim, Assistant Director of the Anti-Corruption Commission lodged a FIR with the Cantonment Police Station against the appellant along with another under section 27(1) of the Anti-Corruption Commission Ain, 2004 read with section 109 of the Penal Code and Rule 15(gha)(5) of the Emergency Power Rules -2007.
 
The case was duly been investigated by the Officer of the Anti-corruption Commission, who submitted a report on 24.10.2007 against the appellant and his wife under section 27(1) of the Anti-Corruption Commission Ain, 2004 read with section 109 of the Penal Code and rule 15(gha) 5 of the Emergency Power Rules-2007.
 
Thereafter the case was transmitted to the Court of Special Judge, Court No. 7, Dhaka for trial and registered as Special Case No. 01 of 2008 wherein a charge was so framed against the accused appellant under section 27(1) of the Anti Corruption Commission Ain, 2004 along with section 109 of the Penal Code. The prosecution examined 83 P.Ws and the defence examined none.
 
Considering the evidence of the witnesses and hearing the parties, the learned Judge of the trial court convicted and sentenced the appellant as stated above under section 27(1) of the Anti-Corruption Commission Ain, 2004 and sentenced him to suffer R.I for 10 years with fine of TK. 10 lacs, in default to suffer R.I for 1 (one) year and confiscating the properties of the appellant and his dependents in favour of the State.
 
Being aggrieved there against the appellant preferred this appeal.
 
Mr. Rafiqul Haq, learned advocate appearing on behalf of the appellant submits that admittedly the notice under section 18 and 20(1) of the Anti-Corruption Commission Ain, 2004 read with Rule l5(Gha) of the Emergency Power Rules 2007 was served on the accused on 18.2.2007, when admittedly the Commission was not in existence at that time and as such the very issuance of the notice is illegal and without jurisdiction. He further submits that the judgment and order of conviction and sentence having been passed on the basis of the notice dated 18.2.2007 is void abinitio. He then submits that when the very initiation of the proceeding is illegal and without jurisdiction as it is based on the notice dated 18.2.2007, the impugned judgment passed in that proceeding also illegal and not sustainable in law. He lastly submits that it is not at all necessary to go into the detailed facts of the case as the Appellate Division in the case of Anti-Corruption Commission Vs. M.K. Alamgir, 62 DLR(AD). 20p. has held that the notice dated 18.2.2007 issued by the secretary to the Commission was without any lawful authority as such void and any proceeding based on the said void Notice is a nullity in the eye of law.
 
Mr. Khurshid Alam Khan along with Mr. Abdul Aziz Khan learned advocate appearing on behalf of the Anti-Corruption, on the other hand, candidly admits that he can not dispute the proposition of law laid down by the Appellant Division in the case of Anti-Corruption Commission vs. Mohiuddin Khan Alamgir. He further submits that this appeal should be disposed of only on law point without going into the detailed facts of the case so that the Anti-Corruption Commission may issue notice on fresh cause of action.
 
Admittedly, the case was initiated on the strength of the notice dated 18.2.2007 (Ext-2) issued by the Secretary of the Anti- Corruption Commission. The notice is quoted below:
 
দুর্নীতি দমন কমিশন
প্রধান কার্যালয়, ঢাকা।
স্পেশাল জজ আদালত-৭, ঢাকা।
বিশেষ মামলা নং- ১/২০০৮
স্মারক নং- দুদক/৭০-২০০৭(অনুঃ-২)/৬৫৪           
তারিখঃ ১৮/০২/২০০৭ ইং
সম্পদ বিবরনী দাখিলের
‘‘নোটিশ’’
 
আপনি জনাব গিয়াস উদ্দিন আল মামুন, (ব্যবস্থাপনা পরিচালক, চ্যানেল ওয়ান) রোড নং-৫, বাসা-৭৮, পুরাতন ডিওএইচএস, বনানী, ঢাকা নিজ নামে এবং আপনার স্ত্রী, পুত্র, কন্যা সহ পরিবারের অন্যান্য সদস্য বা আপনার পক্ষে অন্য কোন নামে বৈধ ও জ্ঞাত আয়ের সহিত অসংগতিপুর্ন সম্পদ অর্জন করেছেন মর্মে প্রাথমিক অনুসন্ধানে প্রতীয়মান হওয়ায় জরুরী ক্ষমতা বিধিমালা, ২০০৭ এর বিধি ১৫ঘ(১), ১৫ঘ(২) তৎসহ দুর্নীতি দমন কমিশন আইন, ২০০৪ এর ধারা ১৮ ও ২৬(১) এর বিধান ও ক্ষমতা বলে অত্র নোটিশ প্রাপ্তি/জারীর ৭২ ঘন্টার মধ্যে ১, সেগুনবাগিচা ঢাকাস্থ দুর্নীতি দমন কমিশনের প্রধান কার্যালয় অফিস চলাকালীন আপনি স্ব-শরীরে কমিশনের পরিচালক (তদমত্ম) জনাব মোঃ তানকিন হক সিদ্দিকী এর নিকট উপস্থিত হয়ে আপনার মালিকানাধীন ও দখলাধীন স্বনামে ও আপনার স্ত্রী, পুত্র কন্যা সহ পরিবারের অন্যান্য সদস্য বা আপনার পক্ষে অন্য নামে থাকা সকল স্থাবর ও অস্থাবর সম্পত্তির এবং উক্তরম্নপ সম্পত্তি অর্জনের উৎস সম্পর্কিত বিবরন দাখিল করার জন্য নির্দেশ দেয়া যাচ্ছে। ব্যর্থতায় আপনার সকল স্থাবর অস্থাবর সম্পত্তি অবরম্নদ্ধ/ক্রোকাবদ্ধ করা সহ উলিস্নখিত আইনসহ দেশে প্রচলিত আইন অনুযায়ী যথোপযুক্ত কার্য ধারা গ্রহন করা হবে।
 
প্রাপকঃ
জনাব গিয়াস উদ্দিন আল মামুন
ব্যবস্থাপনা পরিচালক
চ্যানেল ওয়ান,
রোড নং-৫, বাসা-৭৮, পুরাতন
ডিওএইচএস, বনানী
স্বাক্ষর/মোঃ দেয়োর হোসেন
সচিব
১৮/২/০৭
প্রদর্শণী নং-২
বিশেষ মামলা নং ১/০৮
যাহার দ্বারা ঢ়.--১
তাং-২৩/১/০৮
স্বাক্ষর/মোঃ সিরাজুল ইসলাম
বিশেষ জজ
বিশেষ জজ আদালত-৭, ঢাকা।
 
 
From the judgment of the Appellate Division (62 DLR (AD) 290) we find that admittedly there was no Commission from 7.2.2007 to 24.2.2007. The notice Exhibit-2 dated 18.2.2007 was issued when the Commission was not inexistence. Therefore, the Special Case No. 1 of 2008 proceeded against the accused appellant on an invalid notice. Consequently the judgment delivered in Special Case No. 01/2008 is void.
 
Mr. Rafiq-UI-Haq and Mr. Md. Khurshid Alam Khan, learned Advocates submit that since this appeal rests on law point, it is not at all necessary to go into the detailed facts of the case. We also hold the same view. It is however pertinent to quote the relevant portion of the judgment of the Appellate Division in case of Anti-Corruption Commission Vs. Mohiuddin Khan Alamgir.
 
“In the present case, the notice dated 18.2.2007 under section 26 of the Act, was issued by the secretary of the Commission but he does not represent the Commission, he is only one of its employees, to carry out the decision of the Commission. But at the relevant time there were no Commissioners, as such, apparently, the Secretary issued the notice on 18.2.2007 on his own, without any satisfaction and decision from the Commission, in violation of Section 26 of the Act, the concerned authorities on realizing this error, tried to cover it up by inserting sub-section (2) in Section 18 on 18.4.2007 by Ordinance No. VII of 2007. Sub-section (2) provides for ex post facto ratification of the acts done by the officers of the Commission during the period from 7.2.2007 to 24.2.2007 without any authorization from the Commission but the question of jurisdiction goes to the root of the matter. If any person acts beyond his authority, to the prejudice of any person such acts cannot be ratified or validated by post facto legislation his action remain void.”
 
In the present case the notice was issued on 18.2.2007. Therefore the decision held by the Appellate Division applies to the facts and circumstances of the present case. Mr. Khursid Alam Khan has drawn our attention to the concluding portion of the judgment, which is quoted below:
 
“There is however, no legal impediment for the commission to issue fresh notice under section 26 of the Act, if so advised, but not in those cases where the accused has already been acquitted on merit of the case as is in this case."
 
The above finding of the Appellate Division is binding on the High Court Division. But the fact remains that the convict appellant was acquitted of the charge leveled against him.
 
In the light of the findings made before we find substance in the appeal.
 
Accordingly the appeal is allowed and the judgment and order dated 27.03.2008 passed by the Special Judge, Special Court No. 7, Dhaka in Special Case No. 01 of 2008 passed against the accused appellant under section 27(1) of the Anti- Corruption Commission Ain, 2004 is hereby set aside and the accused appellant is acquitted of the charge leveled against him.
 
The order passed for confiscation of the property of the appellant is also set aside.
 
Let the appellant be discharged from his bail bond.
 
Send down the L. C. records.
 
Communicate the judgment and order to the court below and the office concern.
 
Ed.