1. This is criminal appeal No. 48/6/1954. The City Criminal Court, Division III, by judgment dated 7-1-1954, acquitted the respondent of an offence Under Sections 78 and 112, Hyderabad Motor Vehicles Act. Hence this appeal. We have heard the arguments of the learned Senior Government Advocate. Shri Mohd. Mirza. for the State and that of the learned advocate, Shri J. V. Narainga Rao, for the respondent.
2. We have perused the judgment. It appears that the respondent was driving a motor-car and proceeding from Troop Bazar side to Putli Bawli via old Residency Gate. At the traffic post just before the gate, the Police Officer doing traffic duty stopped the respondent but he did not obey the signal and proceeded towards Putli Bawli. This fact has been deposed to by three Police witnesses. In rebuttal the defence witness has deposed that the signal was obeyed and the Police Officer doing the traffic duty was rude to the respondent. We are of the opinion that the evidence led by the prosecution is reliable.
3. The learned trial Judge has, however, observed that:
A constable is not a police officer within the meaning of Section 78, Motor Vehicles Act nor is he the controlling authority.
We do not agree. By Section 3(b), Hyderabad City Police Act, every person appointed under the rules made under the Act is included within the meaning of the term 'Police Officer'; and there can be no question that the traffic constable was so appointed.
The said appointment has been proved by the prosecution evidence. Section 78 lays down that every driver shall comply with all the directions given to him by a Police Officer.
Evidently, the Police Officer referred to in Section 78 is the same Police Officer as is defined in Section 3(b), Hyderabad City Police Act. Hence the observation of the learned Judge quoted above in exteuse is obviously incorrect and wholly without any foundation. He has observed further that the Police Officer is not the controlling authority. He means that a Police Officer has no authority to control traffic. This again is erroneous as Section 78 clearly invests him with the authority to control the traffic.
The learned Judge has observed further that the prosecution has not proved mandatory signs. He means that die circular white disc, with the word 'STOP' painted in black letters on it, is not included in the mandatory signs with which the Police constable controls traffic and is not prescribed by the Motor Vehicles Act. A perusal of Sub-section (2) of Section 78 will however show that it lays down in clear words that every driver shall comply with all the directions given to him by any Police Officer for the time being engaged in the regulation of traffic in any public place.
Hence, evidently any sign with which traffic I may be controlled is included within the meaning of the mandatory signs, and the opinion of the learned Judge to the contrary cannot be maintained.
4. It was argued that the notice issued to the respondent did not contain anly reference to the section which was contravened, nor does it give any details of the offence. We have perused the notice and it bears out the above contentions. We are, 4 therefore, of the opinion that those who are responsible for the issue of the notice should take good care to specify in it the above details. The question, therefore, is what is the effect of the omission. We think that, in the circumstances of this case, it was at best a mere irregularity; for the respondent was fully aware of the offence with which he was charged and had adduced defence evidence after fully understanding the nature of the charge.
The learned advocate for the respondent has relied on '- 'Gajraj Singh v. Emperor AIR 1936 All 761 (A). There, no opportunity was given for leading defence evidence and because of this, the learned Judges observed that it was not possible to hold that justice was done. The case is, therefore, not relevant, as, here full opportunity for adducing defence witnesses was given and it was availed of. We are, therefore, of the opinion that the offence is fully proved. We therefore, set aside the order . of acquittal. The question of sentence remains. As it it was a first offence, we think, ends of justice will be met if the respondent is fined Rs. 2/-.