Small reprieve for Fardeen, to be tried for lesser offence

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Mumbai, Jan 24 (UNI) Bollywood actor Fardeen Khan, embroiled in a drugs case, will now face trial for possessing a small quantity of cocaine.

Additional sessions judge P N Deshmukh, while rejecting Fardeen Khan's discharge application, has fixed February 8 for framing charges against the actor.

Fardeen's counsel Advocate Aiyaz Khan informed that his client will now be tried under Section 21(a) of the NDPS Act for possessing less than two grams of the drug.

Under the NDPS Act, a person who is charged with possession of merely one gram of cocaine is liable to a minimum jail term of six months, whereas a person who is charged with possession of two grams or more is liable to ten years rigorous imprisonment.

Fardeen Khan was arrested in 2001 for purchasing cocaine from a drug peddler, Nasir Abdul Karim. The police had filed a case against the duo, according to which nine grams of the drug was found on both of them.

Fardeen had appealed to the court to amend the charges against him, saying only one gram of cocaine had been found on him personally. But, the court had rejected Fardeen's plea.

UNI ST MAZ SB AS1629

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