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Dhanna Singh Vs. the Regional Transport Authority, Gwalior - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectMotor Vehicles
CourtMadhya Pradesh High Court
Decided On
Case NumberMisc. Petn. No. 219 of 1974
Judge
Reported inAIR1975MP77; 1974MPLJ922
ActsMotor Vehicles Act, 1939 - Sections 68F(1A), 68F(1B) and 68F(1C); Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Act, 1969 - Sections 62(1) and 68B
AppellantDhanna Singh
RespondentThe Regional Transport Authority, Gwalior
Advocates:Y.S. Dharmadhikari, Adv. General for Intervener Dharamsingh, ;P.C. Pathak, Adv. for Intervener Alamchand Bhambhani;V.S. Dabir, Adv.
DispositionPetition dismissed
Cases ReferredBaluram v. State of M. P.
Excerpt:
- - 580 of 1974. these petitions under article 226 of the constitution raise an interesting question as to the construction of sub-section (1-c) of section 68f of the motor vehicles act, 1939. the relevant facts are that the madhya pradesh state road transport corporation, which is a state transport undertaking under chapter iv-a of the act, prepared scheme no. (1-a) where any scheme has been published by a state transport undertaking under section 68-c that undertaking may apply for a temporary permit, in respect of any area or route or portion thereof specified in the said scheme, for the period intervening between the date of publication of the scheme and the date of publication of the approved or modified scheme, and where such application is made, the state transport authority or.....g.p. singh, j. 1. this order shall also govern the disposal of miscellaneous petition no. 580 of 1974. these petitions under article 226 of the constitution raise an interesting question as to the construction of sub-section (1-c) of section 68f of the motor vehicles act, 1939. the relevant facts are that the madhya pradesh state road transport corporation, which is a state transport undertaking under chapter iv-a of the act, prepared scheme no. 38 which was published under section 68-c on 12th february 1965. the scheme covers the route gwalior to bhander via daura, detia and unnao. dhanna singh, who is petitioner in m. p. no. 219 of 19.74 and respondent no. 2 in m. p. no. 580 of 1974, first obtained a regular permit for this route on 16th march 1970 from the regional transport authority,.....
Judgment:

G.P. Singh, J.

1. This order shall also govern the disposal of Miscellaneous Petition No. 580 of 1974. These petitions under Article 226 of the Constitution raise an interesting question as to the construction of Sub-section (1-C) of Section 68F of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1939. The relevant facts are that the Madhya Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation, which is a State Transport undertaking under Chapter IV-A of the Act, prepared Scheme No. 38 which was published under Section 68-C on 12th February 1965. The scheme covers the route Gwalior to Bhander via Daura, Detia and Unnao. Dhanna Singh, who is petitioner in M. P. No. 219 of 19.74 and respondent No. 2 in M. P. No. 580 of 1974, first obtained a regular permit for this route on 16th March 1970 from the Regional Transport Authority, Gwalior. This grant was set aside by the Appellate Tribunal on 20th February 1972 being in contravention of Section 68-F (1-D) on an appeal preferred by Dharam Singh, who is petitioner in M. P. No. 580 of 1974 and an intervener in M. P. No. 219 of 1971 Subsequently, Dhanna Singh was able to secure a temporary permit for four months on this route on 16th September 1973 from the Regional Transport Authority, Gwalior. Dhanna Singh's contention, however, was that fixation of a period of four months was illegal and that the permit should have been made effective under Section 68-F (1-C) till the issue of a permit to the State Transport Corporation on that route. Dhanna Singh, therefore, filed a revision which was dismissed on 3th January 1974. Dharam Singh was aggrieved by the grant of the temporary permit to Dhanna Singh and he filed M. P. No. 751 of 1973 for challenging the grant. This petition was dismissed as infructuous on 31st January 1974, as by that time the permit had expired. On 3rd January 1974 another temporary permit was issued to Dhanna Singh for four months. Dhanna Singh then filed M. P. No. 219 of 1974. His contention in this petition is the same as in the earlier revision that fixation of duration of the permit as four months is illegal being contrary to the terms of Section 68-F (1-C) and the permit should have been issued to him to be effective till the grant of a permit to the State Transport Corporation. Dharam Singh applied to intervene in this petition and his application was allowed and so he is an intervener in this petition. On 19th April 1974 Dhanna Singh, as a matter of abundant caution, again applied for a temporary permit. On this application he was again granted a temporary permit for four months on 7th May. 1974. This grant has been challenged by Dharam Singh in M. P. No. 580 of 1974.

2. The argument of Shri V. S. Dabir, learned counsel appearing for Dhanna Singh is that provisions of Section 62 are inapplicable to a temporary permit granted under Sub-section (1-C) of Section 68-F, that the sub-section itself provides the period for which the permit is to remain effective, and that every temporary permit under the subsection will continue to be effective until the grant of a permit to the State Transport Undertaking. The learned Advocate General who appears for Dharam Singh, on the other hand, contends that the maximum limit of four months for temporary permits laid down by Section 62 applies to a temporary permit granted under Sub-section (1-C), that A temporary permit under the sub-section is subject to such conditions as the authority granting the permit may think fitto impose and that a condition as to duration of the permit can be imposed, even without recourse to Section 62, under this power conferred by the sub-section.

3. The fasciae of Sub-sections (1-A) to (1-D) was introduced in Section 68-F by the Amending Act 56 of 1969. The legal position prior to the introduction of these sub-sections was that publication of a scheme under Section 68-C did not prevent the grant or renewal of permits under Chapter IV on any area or route covered by the scheme. It was only after publication of the approved scheme under Section 68-D that applications for grant or renewal of permits in contravention of the scheme could be refused by the Transport Authorities. Grant or renewal of a permit after the publication of a scheme under Section 68-C at times created complications, for such permits could not be mentioned for cancellation, in the scheme and, therefore, could not be affected even by the approved scheme; [Baluram v. State of M. P. 1967 MPLJ 539 = (AIR 1967 Madh Pra 130)]. This difficulty in implementation of a nationalisation scheme is remedied by introduction of these sub-sections in Section 68-F. The object behind them is to prohibit grant or renewal of permits on areas or routes covered by a scheme after its publication under Section 68-C and to make provision for grant of temporary permits to the State Transport Undertaking or in its absence to any other operator to meet the need of travelling public for the period intervening the publication of a scheme under Section 68-C and the publication of the approved scheme under Section 68-D. The note on the relevant clause of the Bill explains the object of the sub-sections as follows:

'The committee feel that when a scheme of nationalisation is published under Section 68-C, no permit should be granted or renewed to any person. But in view of the fact that between the publication of such scheme in the draft form and the date of its publication in the approved form, there is bound to be a time-lag, the Committee feel that temporary permits should be issued for the intervening period to the State Transport Undertaking, if it so desires, or, when it does not so desire, to any other operator, so that the interests of the users may not suffer. New sub-sections, viz. Sub-sections (1A), (1B), (1C) and (1D) are, therefore, proposed to be inserted in Section 68-F. The clause has been amended accordingly.-- J. C. R.'

4. For a proper construction of Sub-section (1-C) of Section 68-F, this sub-section has not to be read in isolation and all the four Sub-sections (1-A) to(1-D) which were enacted at the same time, have to be considered together. These sub-sections read as follows:

'(1-A) Where any scheme has been published by a State Transport Undertaking under Section 68-C that Undertaking may apply for a temporary permit, in respect of any area or route or portion thereof specified in the said scheme, for the period intervening between the date of publication of the scheme and the date of publication of the approved or modified scheme, and where such application is made, the State Transport Authority or the Regional Transport Authority as the case may be, shall, if it is satisfied that it is necessary to increase, in the public interest, the number of vehicles operating in such area or route or portion thereof, issue the temporary permit prayed for by the State Transport Undertaking.

'(1-B) A temporary permit issued in pursuance of the provisions of Sub-section (1-A) shall be effective,--

(i) if the scheme is published under Sub-section (3) of Section 68-D, until the grant of the permit to the State Transport Undertaking under Sub-section (1), or

(ii) if the scheme is not published under Sub-section (3) of Section 68-D, until the expiration of the one week from the date on which the order under Sub-section (2) of Section 68-D is made.'

'(1-C) If no application for a temporary permit is made under Sub-section (1-A), the State Transport Authority or the Regional Transport Authority, as the case may be, may grant, subject to such conditions as it may think fit, temporary permit to any person in respect of the area or route or portion thereof specified in the scheme and the permit so granted shall cease to be effective on the issue of a permit to the State Transport Undertaking in respect of that area or route or portion thereof.

(1-D) Save as otherwise provided in Sub-section (1-A), or Sub-section (1-C), no permit shall be granted or renewed during the period intervening between the date of publication, under Section 68-C of any scheme and the date of publication of the approved or modified scheme, in favour of any person for any class of road transport service in relation to an area or route or portion thereof covered by such scheme: Provided that where the period of operation of a permit in relation to any area, route or portion thereof specified in a scheme published under Section 68-C expires after such publication, such permit may be renewed for a limited period, but the permit so renewed shallcease to be effective on the publication of the scheme under Sub-section (3) of Section 68-D.'

5. The language of Sub-section (1-D) is clear and imperative that no permit shall be granted or renewed during the period intervening between the date of publication of a scheme under Section 68-C and the date of publication of the approved scheme under Section 68-D in relation to an area or route covered by the scheme. The proviso to the sub-section contains an exception to the general rule in the matter of renewal of a permit and it allows renewal of a permit expiring after the publication of a scheme for a limited period. Exceptions in the matter of grant of permit are provided in Sub-sections (1-A) and (1-C) which respectively enable the grant of temporary permits to the State Transport Undertaking and the private operators. The opening words of Subsection (1-D), 'save as otherwise provided in Sub-section (1-A) or Sub-section (1-C)', leave no manner of doubt that no permit, whether regular or temporary, can be granted except under Sub-sections (1-A) and (1-C).

6. Sub-section (1-A) enables thegrant of a temporary permit to the State Transport Undertaking on its application. This application has to be 'for the period intervening between the date of publication of the scheme and the date of publication of the approved or modified scheme.' This requirement, however, does not mean that the application must be for the entire period intervening between the two dates. In our opinion the words 'for the period intervening' reasonably construed can only mean 'for any period intervening.' If those words are construed to mean the entire period, it will lead to an illogical result that although the need for a temporary permit may be for a day or two, the State Transport Unertaking must apply for a permit to be operative for the entire period intervening between the date of publication of a scheme and the date of publication of the approved scheme. Further, the State Transport Undertaking can possibly apply for this entire period only when it makes an application on the date of publication of the scheme under Section 68-C. If an application is made on any subsequent date, it can only be for the remaining period and not for the entire period. So, if the words 'for the period intervening' mean 'for the entire period intervening', the subsection will be reduced to a dead letter and the State Transport Undertaking will be debarred in applying for a temporary permit if it fails to apply on the date of publication of the scheme underSection 68-C. This also supports our conclusion that the words 'for the period intervening' mean 'for any period intervening.' The application made by the State Transport Undertaking is not to be allowed as a matter of course. Before the application is allowed and a temporary permit is granted, the Transport Authority concerned must be satisfied 'that it is necessary to increase, in the public interest, the number of vehicles' on the route in question. This requirement means that the Transport Authority will examine what particular number of vehicles are necessary to be increased on a route in the public interest. It also implies that the Transport Authority will consider for what period this increase is necessary. So, if it is necessary to increase the number of vehicles for conveyance of passengers on some special occasion, such as a fair or religious gathering, or to meet some particular temporary need, the Transport Authority cannot find that the necessity for increase in the number of vehicles is for whole of the period ending upto the date of publication of the approved scheme. The Transport Authority's duty to 'issue the temporary permit prayed for by the State Transport Undertaking' is subject to its satisfaction on the matter of necessity to increase the number of vehicles. For example, if the State Transport Undertaking applies for five permits for one year, it would be open to the Transport Authority to find the need only for one permit for one month. The word 'issue' has, no doubt, been construed in the context of Sub-section (1) to leave no discretion in the Transport Authority and to make its function ministerial. But the context in which this word occurs in Sub-section (1-A) is different and the requirement of satisfaction that it is necessary, in the public interest, to increase the number of vehicles shows that the function of the Transport Authority under this provision is not ministerial. The word 'issue' in Sub-section (1-A), in our opinion, has been used in the sense of 'grant'. This is not to say that the opinion of the State Transport Undertaking expressed in the application will not be given due weight. All that we desire to say is that the opinion so expressed on the question of necessity of a temporary permit is not binding on the Transport Authority and it may come to a different conclusion on the question of necessity of increasing the number of vehicles in the public interest as also on the question of duration for which the necessity exists, and it has to issue the temporary permit prayed for the State Transport Undertaking in accordance with its satisfaction on these matters.

7. Sub-section (1-B) enacts that a temporary permit issued under Subsection (1-A) shall be effective until the happening of events mentioned in Clauses (i) and (ii). In other words, it means that a temporary permit shall cease to be effective thereafter. The sub-section pre-supposes that the temporary permit is in operation and has not come to an end. We have already seen that under Sub-section (1-A) the Transport Authority has to grant a temporary permit depending upon its satisfaction as to the necessity of increase in the number of vehicles and the permit will be granted for a particular duration depending upon the need. All temporary permits issued under Sub-section (1-A) may not, therefore, be effective when the events mentioned in Clauses (i) and (ii) of Subsection (1-B) come to happen. A temporary permit referred to in Sub-section (1-B) thus means 'a temporary permit which has not expired earlier to the events mentioned in Clauses (i) and (ii).' Another important feature of these clauses is that they do not deal with a situation when the scheme is modified and the approved scheme as published does not cover the area or route in respect of which a temporary permit was issued under Sub-section (1-A). A scheme published under Section 68-C may cover a number of routes. After publication of a scheme under Section 68-C, no permits other than temporary permits under Sub-section (1-A) and Sub-section (1-C) can be granted in respect of an area or a route covered by the scheme. But the approved scheme published under Section 68-D may not cover all the routes for which the scheme was proposed, for the State Government can modify the scheme. Therefore, it is possible to have a case where a route covered by a scheme, in respect of which a temporary permit is granted under subsection (1-A), may not be covered by the approved scheme published under Section 68-D (3). Now, Clause (i) of Subsection (1-B) obviously provides for cases where a scheme is published under Section 68-D (3) and a permit can be granted to the State Transport Undertaking under Sub-section (1) on the route or area for which a temporary permit was issued under Sub-section (1-A). A permit under Sub-section (1) can be issued to the State Transport Undertaking in place of the temporary permit only when the approved scheme covers the route for which the temporary permit was issued under Sub-section (1-A). So, if a route covered by a scheme, for which a temporary permit was issued under Sub-section (1-A), is not covered by the approved scheme, Clause (i) of Sub-section (1-B) will not be applicable.Clause (ii) of Sub-section (1-B) will also not be applicable to such a case, for it deals with those cases where a scheme is not published under Section 68-D (3), i.e., when a scheme is not at all approved by the State Government by an order passed under Section 68-D (2). A temporary permit issued under Sub-section (1-A) and falling in the category to which Clauses (i) and (ii) of Sub-section (1-B) are not applicable will continue to be operative until it comes to an end by its expiry. If temporary permits can be issued under Sub-section (1-A) without specifying the time for which they are operative, a temporary permit falling in the above category to which Sub-section (1-B) does not apply will become perpetual, a result which could not have been intended by Parliament. This consideration, therefore, also supports the inference drawn by us earlier that a temporary permit issued under Sub-section (1-A) must be for a specified time so that it may come to an end after the expiry of the time for which it is issued.

8. We then come to Sub-section (1-C). It enables the grant of temporary permits to private operators 'if no application for a temporary permit is made under Sub-section (1-A)'. Now, under Sub-section (1-A) an application for a temporary permit can be made only by a State Transport Undertaking. This application can be for any period intervening between the date of publication of the scheme and the date of publication of the approved scheme. The application can be granted only when the Transport Authority is satisfied that it is accessary to increase, in the public interest, the number of vehicles operating in the area or route for which the application is made. As Sub-section (1-C) provided for grant of temporary permits to private operators when no application is made by the State Transport Undertaking, under Sub-section (1-A) it clearly envisages a situation when an application could have been made by the State Transport Undertaking and could have been allowed by the Transport Authority. Therefore, the Transport Authority can grant a temporary permit under Sub-section (1-C) only when it could have granted the same to the State Transport Undertaking under Subsection (1-A). It necessarily follows from this that a temporary permit can be granted under Sub-section (1-C) when the Transport Authority is satisfied that it is necessary to increase, in the public interest, the number of vehicles operating in the area or route for which the permit is issued. It also follows that, as in the case of a permit under Subsection (1-A), the permit granted underSub-section (1-C) should be for a specified duration. A temporary permit granted under Sub-section (1-C) ceases to be effective 'on the issue of a permit to the State Transport Undertaking'. This will naturally apply only to those temporary permits issued under Sub-section (1-C) which have not expired earlier. The issue of a permit to the State Transport Undertaking which makes a temporary permit under Sub-section (1-C) ineffective has, in the context, reference to a permit which can be granted to the State Transport Undertaking under Sub-section (1) and Sub-section (1-A). A permit under Sub-section (1) can be granted to the State Transport Undertaking when the scheme as approved covers the area or route for which the permit is granted. So, if a scheme is not approved or is modified at the time of approval to exclude the route in respect of which a temporary permit granted under Sub-section (1-C) is in operation, there, will be no possibility of such a temporary permit ceasing to be effective by issue of a permit to the State Transport Undertaking. Such a temporary permit can only cease to be operative by expiry. Parliament could not have intended that a temporary permit, which cannot be made ineffective by issue of a permit to the State Transport Undertaking, should perpetuate itself. This consideration supports the conclusion that a temporary permit issued under Sub-section (1-C) like a temporary permit under Sub-section (1-A) must be issued for a specific period so that it may become, ineffective after its expiry. It may also be noticed that under Sub-section (1-C) the Transport Authority can impose such conditions to the permit as it may think fit and this provision can also enable it to fix the duration of the permit.

9. On a close examination of the language, scheme and object of Sub-sections (1-A), (1-B) and (1-C), we are unable to accept the contention of Shri V. S. Dabir that a temporary permit granted under Sub-section (1-C) cannot be for a fixed duration and that it can only come to an end after a permit is issued in favour of the State Transport Undertaking. The learned counsel argued that the words 'grant ..... temporarypermit'' show that only one permit is contemplated in respect of an area or route and not successive permits and, therefore, the Transport Authority cannot fix a period in the permit and grant successive permits for the same route. There is no merit whatsoever in this argument In an Act of Parliament, unless there is anything repugnant in the context or object, words in the singularinclude the plural and a power conferred on an Authority can be exercised from time to time as occasion arises [see Sections 14 and 15 of the General Clauses Act, 1897]. Therefore, although the word 'permit' is used in the singular in Sub-section (1-C), the Transport Authority will have jurisdiction to grant any number of temporary permits as and when the occasion for the grant arises.

10. We will now examine the contention of the learned Advocate-General that the Transport Authority cannot fix a limit beyond four months for a temporary permit granted under Subsection (1-C). The contention is based on the argument that the restriction in that behalf contained in Section 62 (1) is not inconsistent with anything contained in Chapter IV-A or Section 6'8-P. The conclusion reached by us earlier that a temporary permit issued under Sub-sections (1-A) and (1-C) of Section 68-F has to be for a fixed duration has been reached mainly on construing the language of these sub-sections without taking any assistance from Section 62. There is no specific bar in these sub-sections that a temporary permit granted under them cannot at any one time be for more than four months. That bar is contained in Section 62 (1) and the question is whether that also applies for a temporary permit issued under Subsections (1-A) and (1-C) of Section 68-F.

11. A 'permit', as defined in Section 2 (20), means 'the document issued by the Inter-State Transport Commission, or a State or Regional Transport Authority authorising the use of a transport vehicle as a contract carriage, or stage carriage, or authorising the owner as a private carrier or public carrier to use such vehicle. Section 42, which is the first section in Chapter IV enacts that no owner of a transport vehicle shall use or permit the use of the vehicle in any public place save in accordance with the conditions of a permit. The provisions of this Chapter show that subject-wise there are four categories of permits, viz., stage carriage permit, contract carriage permit, private carrier's permit and public carrier's permit. Duration-wise permits are of two classes; temporary and non-temporary which, for convenience, may be called 'regular'. A regular permit can be granted after following the procedure under Section 57. The life of a regular permit as provided in Section 58 is between three to five years. A regular permit can be renewed on an application made and disposed of as if it were an application for a permit. A temporary permit is issued under Section 62 'to be effective for a limited period not in any case to exceed four months' which has been interpreted to mean that at any one time a temporary permit cannot be issued for more than four months; but, if the need for such a permit persists, successive permits can be issued. The procedure laid down in Section 57 need not be followed for grant, of a temporary permit. The grounds on which a temporary permit can be granted are mentioned in Sub-sections (1) and (2) of Section 62. These grounds indicate that such a permit is granted to meet a temporary need or when it is not possible or expedient to grant or renew a regular permit. A reading of the provisions of Chapter IV shows: all permits, whether regular or temporary, are for a limited duration; the life of a regular permit varies from three to five years, but the duration of a temporary permit cannot be for more than four months; a regular permit can be renewed but a temporary permit cannot be renewed; a temporary permit can be granted without following the procedure under Section 57 but for a regular permit that procedure has to be followed. Although the expression 'temporary permit' is not defined in the Act, a reading of Section 62 and other sections in Chapter IV goes to show that it means a permit granted for a limited duration not exceeding four months.

12. Let us now revert to Subsections (1-A) and (1-C) of Section 68-F. We have already stated that these subsections indicate the grounds on which a temporary permit can be granted to the State Transport Undertaking or to a private operator. They also imply that the temporary permit must be for a specified period. The sub-sections are silent on the question whether a temporary permit which can be granted under these sub-sections cannot at any one time be for more than four months. One of the constructions suggested is that as no maximum limit of four months is expressed in the sub-sections, a temporary permit can be granted under them for any length of time. The other construction is that when these sub-sections refer to a temporary permit, they necessarily mean a temporary permit of the nature and duration as generally understood and limit of four months, which is an essential feature of a temporary permit under Chapter IV, must also apply to a temporary permit granted under these sub-sections. As the language used by Parliament in the sub-sections is not specific, we can look to the consequences which will follow by adoptingthe alternative constructions. If no limit of time of a temporary permit is implied in these sub-sections, it will mean that the Transport Authority will be able to grant a temporary permit under Sub-section (1-A) to the State Transport Undertaking even for a period of six or seven years and, if the route for which such a permit is granted is not included in the approved scheme, the permit will continue for its full length. Similarly, the Transport Authority in case falling under Sub-section (1-C) will be able to grant a temporary permit to a private operator for any length of time and the permit so granted will have its full operation if the scheme is not approved or if the route is not included in the approved scheme. The result is that a temporary permit may be granted for any length of time when even a regular permit is limited to a period of three to five years is somewhat startling and could not have been intended by Parliament. It is, therefore, reasonable to infer that Parliament, while conferring on the transport Authority power to issue a temporary permit under Sub-sections (1-A) and (1-C) used the expression 'temporary permit' in the sense it is understood under Chapter IV, i.e., a permit for a limited period not in any case to exceed four months. Such a construction does not create any anomaly and does not lead to any startling results in the working ofthe sub-sections. Further, it will enable the Transport Authority to review the situation every four months and to see whether the need for the permit continues and, in cases falling under Sub-section (1-C), whether the permit-holder has been satisfactorily maintaining the service and whether, having regard to the public interest, the permit should be granted to him or to some other operator. Experience has shown that years may elapse after the publicaton of a scheme under Section 68-C before it is finalised under Section (sic)8-D. In this very case the scheme was published in 1965 and it is still awaiting the approval, modification or rejection by the appropriate Governments. It is, therefore, all the more necessary that the Transport Authority should have opportunity to have periodical review of the situation as also of the working of the operator to whom a temporary permit is granted under Sub-section (1-C). Section 68-B, to which reference was made by Shri V. S. Dabir, no doubt, makes the provisions in Chapter IV-A prevail against the provisions of Chapter IV in case of inconsistency. But in cases where there is no inconsistency, the provisions in Chap. IV may still apply to a permit issued under Chapter IV-A.For example, the general conditions of apermit prescribed by Section 59 inChapter IV, which apply to every permit, will also apply to a temporary permit granted to a private operator under Sub-section (1-C) of Section 68-F forthere is no inconsistency between theprovisions of Section 59 and Sub-section (1-C) of Section 68-F. Similarly, wedo not find any inconsistency betweenthe requirement of Section 62 that a temporary permit should be for a limitedperiod not exceeding four months and theprovisions of Sub-sections (1-A), (1-B)and (1-C) of Section 68-F. For allthese reasons, we are of opinion that atemporary permit referred to in Subsections (1-A) and (1-C) of Section 68-Fmeans a temporary permit for a limitedperiod not exceeding four months atany one time as is the nature of a temporary permit under Section 62.

13. The learned Advocate General also argued that the order of the Regional Transport Authority of 9th May 1974 did not show that there was a temporary need and, therefore, grant of the temporary permit to Dhanna Singh was illegal. In our opinion, there is no merit in this argument. A temporary permit under Sub-section (1-C) of Section 68-F, ,as already explained, has to be granted on the ground mentioned in Sub-section (1-A) of the same section when the State Transport Undertaking does not apply for a temporary permit. The Transport Authority, before granting a temporary permit under Sub-section (1-C), has to be satisfied that it is necessary to increase, in the public interest, the number of vehicles operating on the route concerned. Although there is no specific finding to that effect in the order of the Regional Transport Authority, such a finding is implied in it. The previous history of the case shows that the need for a regular permit was found and a regular permit was issued to Dhanna Singh which was set aside in view of the ban imposed by Sub-section (1-D) of Section 68-F. Later, from time to time, temporary permits were issued. All this shows that when the Regional Transport Authority granted a temporary permit by its order of 9th May 1974, it was satisfied that the need for increasing the number of vehicles operating on the route continued. We may, however, observe that it may not be possible to infer an implied satisfaction of the Authority in all cases regarding the need for the grant of a temporary permit under Sub-section (1-C) of Section 68-F and, therefore, a specific finding to this effect should as a rule be recorded.

14. The learned Advocate-General also contended that apart from Dhanna Singh, there were three other applicants for the same permit and the Regional Transport Authority preferred Dhanna Singh against the other applicants on irrelevant grounds. In our opinion, this argument is also not of any substance. The operators, who competed against Dhanna Singh, have not come to this Court for challenging the order of the Regional Transport Authority. Dharam Singh, for whom the learned Advocate-General appears, was not one of the applicants for the permit. It is not open to him to raise the point, that in place of Dhanna Singh some other applicant should have been granted the permit when none of the other applicants have approached this Court.

15. In the result, both the petitions fail and are dismissed. There will be no order as to costs of these petitions. The security deposit will be refunded to the petitioners.


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