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In Re: Jayaramulu Naidu and ors. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCriminal
CourtChennai
Decided On
Reported in(1922)43MLJ553
AppellantIn Re: Jayaramulu Naidu and ors.
Excerpt:
- .....them is that they were the owners of ' the cattle-shed which, i think, is not sufficient to justify a conviction as regards them.2. the conviction will therefore be set aside as regards accused 2 and 3 and the fines, if paid, will be refunded.
Judgment:
ORDER

Krishnan, J.

1. This revision case is filed by accused 2 and 3 only in C.C. No. 152 of 1921 on the file of the Third Class Magistrate of Uttaramerur. They have been convicted under Section 55 Clause (a) of Act I of 1386, the Madras Abkari Act, for being in possession of liquor without a proper licence obtained for the purpose. The first accused has not come up here at all. It is argued on behalf of accused 2 and 3 that there is no evidence on record to show that they were in possession of the liquor. The finding of the lower court is that the liquor was found in a cattle-shed which belonged to accused 2 and 3 in which the first accused was selling the liquor. When the authorities came up on the scene the first accused seems to have locked up this shed and bolted and the door of the shed had to be broken open to get access into it. The lower court no doubt holds that the 2nd and 3rd accused should also be considered to have been in possession of the liquor because they were the owners of the shed but I think this finding cannot be accepted for in Section 55(a) the word 'possession' I think does not mean constructive possession but actual possession. It is only people who are actually in possession of contraband liquor without licence that can be punished under the section. In the circumstances of the case there is no clear evidence that accused 2 and 3 had anything to do with liquor, and the only point against them is that they were the owners of ' the cattle-shed which, I think, is not sufficient to justify a conviction as regards them.

2. The conviction will therefore be set aside as regards accused 2 and 3 and the fines, if paid, will be refunded.


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