Marine Drive constable case: Meow meow or ajinomoto? No retest, says court

The Special NDPS court yesterday rejected the application filed by the Mumbai Crime Branch for sending samples of the substance found with constable Dharmaraj Kalokhe of the Marine Drive police station for retesting to the Central Forensic Science Laboratory (CFSL) in Hyderabad.

Sessions Judge U B Hejib delivered the order after hearing the prosecution and defence arguments. On May 25, the Crime Branch had filed an application for retesting the samples after the State Forensics Laboratory in Kalina had given negative reports for mephedrone aka meow meow, saying the substance was monosodium glutamate (MSG), commonly known as ajinomoto.

Defence Advocate Jayesh Wani, representing Kalokhe, argued that the Crime Branch wanted to send the samples for retesting as the reports were not in their favour. He said there is no provision in the NDPS Act for sending samples for retesting and the prosecution had failed to explain the circumstances and reasons for retesting. Senior Inspector Avdhut Chavan of the Crime Branch said, “We will appeal after we get the order copy from the court.”

On March 9, the Satara police had raided Kalokhe's house where they had seized 100 kg of what was believed to be mephedrone. The next day, the Mumbai Police searched Kalokhe’s cupboard in the Marine Drive police station and seized 12 kg of the substance, foreign currency and liquor bottles.

All the accused in the case Kalokhe, Baby Patankar, her son Satish Patankar and five policemen, Senior Inspector Suhas Gokhale, Inspector Gautam Gaikwad, Sub-Inspector Sudhakar Sarang, Assistant Sub-Inspector Jyotiram Mane and Head Constable Yeshwant Parate had been granted bail by the Sessions Court.

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