G.L. Chopra, J.
1. This appeal is directed against an order of the Election Tribunal, Karnal, dismissing the election petition presented by the appellant to challenge the election of Ch. Multan Singh, respondent, to the Punjab Legislative Assembly from Gharaunda Constituency, on the preliminary objection that the provisions of Section 117 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951, had not been complied with.
2. Section 117 of the Act lays down :
'The petitioner shall enclose with the petition a Government Treasury receipt showing that a deposit of one thousand rupees has been made by him either in a Government Treasury or in the Reserve Bank of India in favour of the Secretary to the Election Commission as security for the costs of the petition.'
Sections 85 and 93 enjoin that the Election Commission or the Tribunal, as the case may be, shall dismiss an election petition if the provisions of Section 117 have not been complied with.
3. The petitioner had deposited the amount of Rs. 1.000/- in Government Treasury, Karnal, and enclosed the receipt thereof with the petition. The receipt, as reproduced in the judgment under appeal, reads --
To be filled in by the remitter.To be filled by the Departmental Officer or the Treasury.
By whom tendered.
Name tor designation) address of the person on whose behalfmoney is paid
Full particuiars of the remittances and of authority (ifany).
Head of Account
Order to the Bank.
Ruiya Ramwald Panna Lal,sakin Gha-war. Gharaun-dy, Vidhan Sa-bha.
Secretary, Election, Commission, Zamanat, Election peti-tion,nisbat, Gharaunda Consultuency, Punjab Vidhan Sabha.
Rs. 1,000 Mabligh, el jazar rupaya siraf.
Date. Correct, receive and grant receipt. Signature and fulldesignation ot the officer ordering the money to be paid in.'
(1) that 'the words 'for' or 'in favour of are conspicuous by their absence in the receipt', and (2) that the receipt does not state that the amount was deposited 'as security for the costs of the petition'. The provisions of Section 117 were, therefore, held not to have been complied with, and the petition was dismissed, The present appeal preferred by the petitioner was first heard by this Court in the absence of the respondent and accepted vide its order dated 20th March, 1958. It has now been again heard on an application presented by the respondent.
4. As regards the first defect pointed out by the Tribunal, Mr. D. N. Aggarwal, learned counsel for the respondent, frankly concedes that it could not be regarded as non-compliance with the provisions of Section 117. The heading of Column 3 of the receipt and the entries therein read together leave no doubt that the deposit was made in favour of the Secretary, Election Commission, and that the Secretary was entitled to withdraw the amount. The section nowhere requires that the words 'in favour of' must appear on or be repeated in the receipt.
5. The second objection is that the amount of Rs. 1,000/- is not stated in the receipt to have been deposited as security for the costs of the petition. At the outset, I must confess that I could not notice any such defect in the receipt even on reading its contents more than once. The receipt states that the amount of Rs. 1,000/- was deposited as 'security in the Election petition relating to Gharaunda Constituency, Punjab Vidhan Sabha'. The objection is that the words 'for the costs' are missing.
To Say the least, the objection is hyper-technical, if not ridiculous. As already observed, the law does not require that every word of Section 117 must appear on or be repeated verbatim in the receipt. The receipt is required to 'show' that the amount of Rs. 1,000/- was deposited as security for costs of the petition, which means that the contents of receipt should be such that anyone who looks at it could arrive at the conclusion that the deposit had been made for the purpose mentioned in the section.
In this, the receipt does not appear to be, in any way, defective. The purpose for which the deposit was made is sufficiently clear; anyone who looks at the receipt can have no doubt that the deposit was made as security for the costs of the petition referred to in the receipt. It is not even suggested that the deposit was, in fact, made, or could be taken to have been made, for any purpose other than security for costs.
6. The matter seems to have been set at rest by a recent decision of the Supreme Court in K. Kamaraja Naclar v. Kunju Thevar, AIR 1958 SC 687. The Treasury Receipt before their Lordships was said to be defective inasmuch as the proper and complete Head of Account had not been mentioned in the receipt, nor had the deposit been made in favour of the Secretary to the Election Commission. Laying down the requirements of Section 117, Bhagwati, J. at page 697 observes --
'What is of the essence of the provision contained in Section 117 is that the petitioner should furnish security for the costs of the petition, and should enclose along with the petition a Government Treasury receipt showing that a deposit of one thousand rupees has been made by him either in a Government Treasury or in the Reserve Bank of India, is at the disposal of the Election Commission to be utilised by it in the manner authorised by law and is under its control and payable on a proper application being made in that behalf to the Election Commission or to any person duly authorised by it to receive the same, be he the Secretary to the Election Commission or any one else.
'If therefore, it can be shown by evidence led before the Election Tribunal that the Government Treasury receipt or the chalan which was obtained by the petitioner and enclosed by him along with his petition presented to the Election. Commission was such that the Election Commission could on a necessary application in that behalf be in a position to realise the said sum of rupees one thousand for payment of the costs to the successful party it would be sufficient compliance with the requirements of Section 117. No such literal compliance with the terms of Section 117 is at all necessary as is contended for on behalf of the appellant before us'.
7. An identical defect, as in this case, waspointed out in the Treasury Receipt which cameup for consideration before a Division Bench ofthis Court in Gianchand Puranchand v. Om PrabhaJain, F.A.O. No. 183 of 1957, D/- 12-8-1958 :(AIR 1959 Punj 66). The objection which hadfound favour with the Tribunal was turned downas having no force.
8. In view of the decision of the Supreme Court in K. Kamaraja Nadar's case, AIR 1958 SC 687, I do not think it would be necessary to refer to the two earlier decisions Harihar Singh v. Singh Ganga Prasad, AIR 1958 Pat 287 and Nand Kishore Prasad Singh v. Member Election Tribunal Patna, AIR 1958 Pat 306, relied upon by the respondent. Otherwise also, the facts in those cases were very much different and they are dearly distinguishable.
9. In the result, the appeal is accepted and the order of the Election Tribunal dismissing the petition set aside. The case shall now go back to the Tribunal for being proceeded with and decided in accordance with law. The respondent shall pay costs of the appellant in this appeal.
S.S. Dulat, J.
10. I agree.