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In Re: M. Subramaniam Detenu No. 1169 in the Central Jail - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCriminal;Constitution
CourtChennai
Decided On
Case NumberCriminal Misc. Petn. No. 818 of 1949
Judge
Reported inAIR1950Mad405
ActsMadras Maintenance of Public Order Act, 1947 - Sections 2(1)
AppellantIn Re: M. Subramaniam Detenu No. 1169 in the Central Jail
Advocates:N.S. Mani, Adv. for ;Row and ; Reddy, Advs.;Crown Prosecutor
DispositionPetition dismissed
Cases ReferredNarayanaswami v. Inspector of Police
Excerpt:
.....place or area. ' the order of detention clearly states that his excellency the governor of madras was satisfied that subramaniam, son of muthuswami of kalleripatti village, athur taluk, in the district of salem is likely to act in a manner prejudicial to the public safety and the maintenance of public order which means of the province. unlike the bombay case, here we have the specific statement of the detaining authority that they were satisfied that the petitioner was likely to act in a manner prejudicial to the public safety which means of the province of madras. how the government of madras came to be satisfied is seen from the fact that the chief secretary to the government of madras received a demi official letter from the secretary to the central government, ministry of..........move against the public.'the order of detention clearly states that his excellency the governor of madras was satisfied that subramaniam, son of muthuswami of kalleripatti village, athur taluk, in the district of salem is likely to act in a manner prejudicial to the public safety and the maintenance of public order which means of the province. unlike the bombay case, here we have the specific statement of the detaining authority that they were satisfied that the petitioner was likely to act in a manner prejudicial to the public safety which means of the province of madras. how the government of madras came to be satisfied is seen from the fact that the chief secretary to the government of madras received a demi official letter from the secretary to the central government, ministry of.....
Judgment:

Govinda Menon, J.

1. This is an application by one M. Subramaniam who had been repatriated from the Federated Malay States, by an order of that Government, as he was a citizen of the Indian Union. Arriving in Madras by 'S.S. Rajula' on 26th December 1948, he was arrested after disembarkation and kept in remand till 7th January 1949, on which day an order of detention dated the previous day, was served on him and he was detained under the provisions of Madras Maintenance of Public Order Act. The reasons for detaining him, dated 19th January 1949, were served on him on 12th February 1949. He files his application on 26th March 1949 and it comes up for final disposal before us now.

2. Belying on certain observations in two judgments of the Bombay High Court reported in In re Krishnaji Gopal : (1948)50BOMLR175 , and In re Pandurang Govind, : AIR1949Bom84 the learned advocate for the petitioner contends that the activities of the petitioner in a foreign country should not be taken into consideration in finding out whether his activities are likely to be prejudicial to the maintenance of public order in the Province of Madras, At p. 178, Rajadhyaksha J. in delivering the judgment of the Bench observes as follows:

'Obviously, if the activities of the petitioner were prejudicial to the tranquillity of say, the Province of Madras or of the territories of the Indian States, the District Magistrate would have no jurisdiction to pass any order under the Act. When be therefore says that he was satisfied that the petitioner was acting in a manner prejudicial to the public safety and the maintenance of public order and tranquillity and was carrying on subversive propaganda he must say that the activities of the petitioner affected the peace and tranquillity of the province.'

The learned Judge further goes on to say that,

'When the Distrsct Magistrate has specifically given the description of his state of mind, the omission of any reference to peace and tranquillity of this province would be a serious defect;'

and finally it is stated that the learned Judges did not consider

'the defect as fatal one, as, on that very day a communication under Section 3 was served on the petitioner giving the grounds for the order of detention and this made it clear that the District Magistrate bad satisfied himself that the petitioner was acting in a manner prejudicial to the public safety and tranquillity of the particular district.'

Again at p. 447, in delivering the judgment of the Bench, Sen J. after quoting the passage from judgment in In re Krishnaji Gopal Brahma, (1948) 60 Bom. L. R. 175 : A. I. R. 1948 Bom. 360, stated that,

'In that case, though the place of the detenu's activities was not mentioned in the order under Section 2, the defect was not considered fatal and was regarded as cured because the place was mentioned in the statement of grounds furnished under Section 3. The view taken, therefore, was that it was not altogether essential to mention the place of the detenu's objectionable activities in the order itself, the Court being satisfied from the evidence of the statement of grounds that the District Magistrate had actually considered the activities of the detenue with reference to a specific place or area.'

In the case under consideration the last but two paragraphs of the detention order are in the following terms:

'These dangerous workers have now arrived in India. It is considered that in the present circumstances existing In the province, these repatriates from Malaya are likely to find considerable scope for intensifying their communist activities. These persons are very familiar with the language of the country and from their activities in Malaya it is likely that they will resort to violence and also to incite the masses to indulge in violent and subversive activities. It is considered detrimental to public interest to allow them to move against the public.'

The order of detention clearly states that his Excellency the Governor of Madras was satisfied that Subramaniam, son of Muthuswami of Kalleripatti village, Athur taluk, in the district of Salem is likely to act in a manner prejudicial to the public safety and the maintenance of public order which means of the province. Unlike the Bombay case, here we have the specific statement of the detaining authority that they were satisfied that the petitioner was likely to act in a manner prejudicial to the public safety which means of the Province of Madras. How the Government of Madras came to be satisfied is seen from the fact that the Chief Secretary to the Government of Madras received a demi official letter from the Secretary to the Central Government, Ministry of Home Affairs, intimating to the Chief Secretary the antecedent activities of the petitioner in Malaya. We see no reason to doubt any of the statements contained in that letter. If that is so, it is perfectly open for the departmental heads in the Central Government to intimate to the Provincial Government the activities of the person who had been repatriated to this province prior to such repatriation. The learned counsel contended that the copy of this demi official [letter?] which had been placed before the Court should be ignored. We are unable to accept this contention. The Provincial Government has been candid enough to state as to how they came to be satisfied and the method of satisfaction was as a result of the intimation received from the Central Government, and considering the antecedents and previous activities of the petitioner, they were satisfied that his detention was necessary.

3. In this connection we may refer to an earlier decision of this Court in P. Ramiah v. Chief Secretary to the Government, Madras : AIR1950Mad100 , where our learned brothers Satyanarayana Rao and Viswanatha Sastri JJ. observed as follows:

'The argument that it is not open to the detaining authority to take into consideration the activities of the applicants outside the province in arriving at the satisfaction contemplated by Section 2 (1), of the Act is, in our opinion, unsound. The person against whom action was proposed under Section 2 (1) at the time of the order was within the Province of Madras. The detaining authority had before it material to reach the satisfaction that the person is likely to act in a mariner prejudicial to public safety or the maintenance of public order. The basis for this satisfaction was the activity of the person concerned in Malaya and his activity therefore certainly would be proper material for consideration under Section 2 (1) of the Act in coming to a conclusion whether the person of that description would or would not act in a manner prejudicial to public safety or the maintenance of public order.'

We are perfectly in agreement with these observations and, in our opinion, these observation| apply with great force to the facts of the present case.

4. Another argument of the learned counsel for the petitioner is that it should be affirmatively established by the detaining authority that the person detained should be shown to have done some act within the Province of Madras which alone would confer upon the detaining authority jurisdiction to pass an order under Section 2 (1) of the Act. We see no force in this contention, because since the object of the Act is essentially preventive if the detaining authority is satisfied from the antecedents of the person sought to be detained that he is likely to act in the same manner hereafter as he had been doing in the past then it is perfectly open to the detaining authority to pass an order of detention. We are of opinion that it is not necessary for the detaining authority to wait until mischief is done before preventive sections are invoked. We are satisfied that none of the categories mentioned in Narayanaswami v. Inspector of Police, Mayuram, are present in this case.

5. This petition is therefore, dismissed.


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