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Prem Ratan Mall Vs. Collector and ors. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCriminal
CourtOrissa High Court
Decided On
Judge
Reported in45(1978)CLT121; 1978CriLJ599
AppellantPrem Ratan Mall
RespondentCollector and ors.
Cases ReferredGaneswar Sahu v. State of Orissa
Excerpt:
.....vehicle having been found indulged in forest offences was made subject matter of a confiscation proceedings, and therefore, the procedure followed for confiscation of the vehicle and for its sale is punitive in nature and not with a view to give benefit to anybody including the department which initiated the confiscation proceeding. apart from that, the claim of the orissa state financial corporation as against its loanee (who had taken the vehicle on hire- purchase agreement) brings the loanee and the sureties within the default clause under the state financial corporation act, 1951 or the heirs and successors of such persons. procedure is provided in the act, 1951 and the rules thereof about the manner in which such loan is to be recovered, and in that context only the vehicle under.....orderk.b. panda, j.1. this is a revision filed against an order of the sessions judge, ganjam-boudh, passed in am appeal under s>. 6c of the essential commodities act (hereinaffcei referred to as the 'act') con&mimg; the1 ardee of the collector of ganjam confiscating the kerosene oil seized from the petitioner 'brat setting aside the imposition of fine of rupees 100/- in the following backers mind the petitioner is a wholesaler of kerosene. his brosi-ness premises situate a asks road when berhampur 1town was raided by claatraput civil supplies staff on 5-7-1&74 at 7 p.. rat the raid revealed that the petitioner was in possession of 19,000 litres of kerosene where as in the stock register it was shown to be 18.344 litres. thus, there was an excess of about 2000 litres of kerosene oil,.....
Judgment:
ORDER

K.B. Panda, J.

1. This is a revision filed against an order of the Sessions Judge, Ganjam-Boudh, passed in am appeal under S>. 6C of the Essential Commodities Act (hereinaffcei referred to as the 'Act') con&mimg; the1 ardee of the Collector of Ganjam confiscating the kerosene oil seized from the petitioner 'brat setting aside the imposition of fine of Rupees 100/- in the following backers Mind The petitioner is a wholesaler of kerosene. His brosi-ness premises situate a Asks Road when Berhampur 1town was raided by Claatraput Civil Supplies staff on 5-7-1&74 at 7 p.. rat The raid revealed that the petitioner was in possession of 19,000 litres of kerosene where as in the Stock Register it was shown to be 18.344 litres. Thus, there was an excess of about 2000 litres of kerosene oil, Accordingly a report was made and the Collector Ganjam took action Under Section 6A of the Act and finally confiscated the kerosene and imposed a fine of Rs. 100/- in as much as the petitioner appeared before him but did not show cause on several occasions. As against this order, an appeal was filed before the Sessions Judge Under Section 6C of the Act and he by his order set aside the imposition of fine. It is as against that order that this revision has been filed.

2. It was contended by Mr. Mohanti, the learned Counsel for the petitioner that the mandatory provision of the law, namely a notice as contemplated Under Section 6B of the Act has not been issued and therefore the proceeding is vitiated. The lower Court's record has been called for. It peveals that no notice Under Section 6B of the Act bas been isswed against the petitioner- It was contended on behalf of the State that since the petitioner had appeared before the Collector and had filed petitions through Advocate it would be deemed to be sufficient compliance of Section 6B and further there being no prejudice to him the order should not be interfered with.

3. The case of M/s. Ganeswar Sahu v. State of Orissa under the Essential Commodities Act came up for decision and is reported in (1977) 43 Cut LT 88. Therein it has been held:

Undoubtedly in the scheme of Section 6B of the Act has been implanted the rule of natural justice; the ground for initiation of the proceeding for confiscation is required to be disclosed, the delinquent is to be provided an opportunity to represent his case in writing and a reasonable opportunity of being heard is to be granted,

xx xx xx xxThe proceeding is summary and since wide powers have been vested in the appropriate authority, it must have been the intention of Parliament that the procedure prescribed has to be strictly followed. Then there is a mandate that the grounds on which action is proposed have to be disclosed, it necessarily required the appropriate details to be provided and not a bald mention to be made that there has been contravention of the statutory Order. xx xx xx xx

In that case, in fact, a notice Under Section 6B of the Act had been issued. But the Court held that to be bald and so set aside the order of confiscation and remanded the case. But in the instant case, no notice Under Section 6B of the Act has at all been given. Appearance of the petitioner suomotu cannot be taken to be compliance of notice Under Section 6B of the Act nor can it be a substitution for the same. However, this point was not urged either before the Collector or the Sessions Judge and as such the orders are silent about it. All the same, this mandate of the law cannot be ignored and therefore the order is vitiated and cannot be allowed to stand.

4. I would, therefore, accept the revision, set aside the order of the Sessions Judge and remand the case to the Collector for disposal in accordance with law keeping in view the mandate envisaged under the statute. The revision is allowed.


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