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Queen-empress Vs. Ganga Din - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCriminal
CourtAllahabad High Court
Decided On
Judge
Reported in(1900)ILR22All118
AppellantQueen-empress
RespondentGanga Din
Excerpt:
act no. xi of 1878 (arms act), sections 19, 27 - exemptions from provisions of arms act--government notification no. 518 of the 6th march 1879--government notification no. 458 of the 18th march 1898--'personal use' of arms--arms carried and used by servant of exempted person. - .....the argument that personal use might extend to a case where the baja might be intending to use the arms personally, and such arms were in the meantime being carried for the raja by some servant or retainer. we cannot believe that the intention of the government, when they granted the exemption, was that the privilege of the exemption should only extend to personal use by the raja in the narrow sense contended for. take, for instance, the case of the raja's residence being attacked by dacoits; it surely never could be contended that personal use extended only to the use of arms repelling the attack by the raja, and that the use by any of the raja's retainers for such purpose was not equally within the intention and scope of the exemption. if the government did intend to limit the.....
Judgment:

Knox and Aikman, JJ.

1. This is an appeal preferred by Government from an original order of acquittal passed by a Magistrate of the first class, Allahabad. One Ganga Din, servant of Raja Rampal Singh, a Member of the Legislative Council, N.-W.P. and Oudh, was found within the district of Allahabad carrying a gun and ammunition, and using the gun for the purpose of shooting game. Upon being asked by the Police to show his license he replied that he had no license, but that he was a servant of Raja Rampal Singh, who had ordered him to shoot game for him (the Raja), and that the gun and ammunition belonged to the aforesaid Baja. The Magistrate, we must take it, has found that the pleas raised by Ganga Din are all true, that he is the servant of a master exempted from the operations of Sections 13 and 16 of Act No. XI of 1878. Following a precedent of this Court, in re Hurley, decided on the 12th January 1880, and to be found at page 7 of the Weekly Notes for 1881, the Magistrate found the accused not guilty of any offence under Section 19 of the Arms Act, and acquitted him. It was contended by the Government in this appeal that the accused is guilty, and that the Magistrate has overlooked the fact that the rules in force, when the ruling cited by him was pronounced, have been amended by the Government Notification No. 458 of the 18th March 1898. The last named notification is a notification amending a prior notification No. 518 of the 6th March 1879. So far as this case is concerned, the amendment is one which purports to impose a limit or qualification upon the general exemption which under the notification of 1879 was conferred upon all Rajas. The general exemption thus conferred is now controlled by the proviso that the arms or ammunition carried or possessed by such Rajas shall be, except when otherwise expressly stated, for their own personal use. The learned Counsel for the Crown contends that the use by Ganga Din, under the circumstances we have set out above, cannot be deemed the personal use of the Raja. We have considered his argument very carefully in view of the serious results which will follow from so literal an interpretation of these words. We are unable to construe, and have been shown no authority for construing, these words in the strict sense contended for. We are unable to hold, as the learned Counsel desires us to, that the meaning is that only the Raja who may be exempted under the above notification, can carry on his own person the arms which he may happen to possess. It was allowed in the argument that personal use might extend to a case where the Baja might be intending to use the arms personally, and such arms were in the meantime being carried for the Raja by some servant or retainer. We cannot believe that the intention of the Government, when they granted the exemption, was that the privilege of the exemption should only extend to personal use by the Raja in the narrow sense contended for. Take, for instance, the case of the Raja's residence being attacked by dacoits; it surely never could be contended that personal use extended only to the use of arms repelling the attack by the Raja, and that the use by any of the Raja's retainers for such purpose was not equally within the intention and scope of the exemption. If the Government did intend to limit the exemption to the extent now contended for, we should expect words of a far more stringent and limiting nature. In the present case we hold that Ganga Din has established to the satisfaction of the Court that he was using the arms he carried for what may fairly be termed the 'personal use' of the Raja. We accordingly dismiss the appeal. Let the record be returned.


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