O. Sudheer Reddy and another
State, by Sub Inspector of Police, Talupula
Police Station, rep. PP
Counsel for the Petitioners : Sri O.Manohar Reddy Counsel for the 1st Respondent: Public Prosecutor :ORDER:
The petitioners 1 and 2/accused Nos.1 and 2 are accused of offence punishable under Section 9B of the Explosives Act, 1884. It is a case of possession of Ammonium Nitrate by the petitioners, as per Panchanama dated 20.03.2010. There is no dispute that the petitioners do not possess any licence for possessing the said Ammonium Nitrate, under the provisions of the Explosives Act. According to the prosecution allegations, the said Ammonium Nitrate is meant for use in blasting boulders in stone crusher. The question is whether possession of Ammonium Nitrate without licence under the Explosives Act attracts liability under Section 9B of the said Act. According to the petitioners' counsel, Ammonium Nitrate though an essential item in the explosion process along with other chemicals, Ammonium Nitrate by itself is not an explosive material and that it is not a notified material under the Explosives Act requiring licence for possession thereof. The petitioners filed copy of letter addressed by the Deputy Chief Controller of Explosives, Hyderabad working in the department of Explosives, Government of India dated 12.06.2003. The said letter was addressed to one M. Jaya Ramulu of Ananthapur. In that letter, the Deputy Chief Controller of Explosives, Hyderabad informed the addressee that storage, sale and transportation etc., of Ammonium Nitrate do not attract provisions of the Explosives Act, 1884 and the rules framed there under and that hence, no licence is obligatory for the same under the said rules.
Further, this Court in order dated 07.07.2008 in Criminal Petition No.3565 of 2008 quashed FIR relating to offence punishable under Section 9B(1)(b) of the Explosives Act on the ground that the then Public Prosecutor after obtaining instructions reported before the Court that Ammonium Nitrate is not an explosive.
Now it is contended by the Additional Public Prosecutor that though Ammonium Nitrate is not an explosive, in this case, the said Ammonium Nitrate is meant for the purpose of using the same in blasting boulders in stone crushers. End user of Ammonium Nitrate is not material in this case. The only simple question here is whether possession of Ammonium Nitrate simplicitor without licence is an offence. Having regard to above discussion of the subject, inevitable answer for the said question is in the negative. Hence, the petition is allowed quashing FIR in Crime No.17 of 2010 of Talupula Police Station, Anantapur District relating to offence under Section 9B of the Explosives Act, 1884.
L.R. Copy to be marked.
//By order//


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