PREVENTION OF CORRUPTION (AMENDMENT) ACT, 2018 WILL NOT HAVE RETROSPECTIVE EFFECT SAYS DELHI HC

(By – Ukkash F)

Delhi HC in the case of Madhu Koda v. State Through CBI, ruled out that the Prevention of Corruption (Amendment) Act, 2018 will not affect offenses prior to the enactment of the Act.

The Act is a substitute to the Sec. 13(1) of the principle Act which deals with the Criminal Misconduct of public servants. In this case, the appellant was disqualified to contest elections on the account of his conviction in Bihar. The conviction was based on The Trial Court verdict that the appellant had abused his position as a public servant in order to obtain the allocation of Rajhara Coal Block in favour of M/s Vini Iron and Steel Udyog Limited (hereafter ‘VISUL’), without any public interest.

The learned counsel on behalf of the appellant submitted that firstly, There is no such evidence against the appellant having any illegal gratification from the deal which constitutes under Sec. 13(1)(d) of the PC ACT and hence it is ex facie unsustainable.

The counsel on behalf of the CBI submitted that the Section 13 (1)(d) did not require to prove Illegal gratification and the act do constitute retrospective effect on General Clauses Act. The bench of Justice Vibhu Bakhru in this case, decided that the sole purpose of the amendment itself is to make sure that mens rea will not be necessary to constitute a criminal offense. However, the Act has no retrospective effect.