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Ellappa Goundan and ors. Vs. Ellappa Goundan - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCriminal
CourtChennai
Decided On
Case NumberCriminal Revn. No. 1197 and Cri. Revn. Petn. No. 1135 of 1948
Judge
Reported inAIR1950Mad409
ActsIndian Penal Code (IPC), 1860 - Sections 499 and 500
AppellantEllappa Goundan and ors.
RespondentEllappa Goundan
Appellant AdvocateT.S. Kuppuswamy Ayyar, Adv. for ;V. Rajagopalachari, Adv.;C. Balasubramaniam, Adv. for ;Public Prosecutor
Respondent AdvocateT.K. Subramania Pillai, Adv.
DispositionPetition dismissed
Cases Referred and Mohideen Abdul Khadir v. Emperor
Excerpt:
.....assembly consisting of various castes like barbers, pipers, washer-man, yadavas and others, as in the present case, to join with the yannias in holding such an assembly wherein such defamatory statements are made and acted on and a vannia is outcasted......had they confined to panchayat to members of the interested caste, namely, vannikula kshatrias, will not be available as all kinds of castes and tribes were allowed to take part in the enquiry. it was not a caste panchayat outcasting a member of that caste for a caste offence.4. this petition deserves to be and is hereby dismissed.
Judgment:
ORDER

Panchapakesa Ayyar, J.

1. The six petitioners in this case have all been convicted under Section 500, Penal Code, by the Additional First Class Magistrate, Chingleput, and have been sentenced to pay a fine of Rs. 50 each, or, in default, to undergo simple imprisonment for 3 months each.

2. I have perused the entire records and heard the learned counsel for the petitioners, and see no reason whatever to interfere in revision. The prosecution had proved that these petitioners had assembled a panchayat of persons belonging to all the castes of the village, and not merely of the Vanniar caste, to which they and P. W. 1 belong, and had stated at that panchayat that P. W. 1's married daughter, living: in his house, was having illicit intimacy with an Adidravida and that he would not drive her out as requested and so should be outcasted and the village washerman and barber prevented from rendering service to him and the Amman koil honours, given to him till then, as Periathanakar, should not be given to him, or even his deeparadhanai for the deity accepted, as he bad ceased to be a Periathanakar by his daughter's keeping an Adidravida, and had carried these resolutions into effect. The learned counsel for the petitioners urged that it is only in the statements made by the petitioners themselves in the lower Court, as accused, that the document Ex. D-1, containing the directions of the panchayat was mentioned and filed, and that it is only from their statements that the lower Court got the date 22nd March 1947 mentioned in the charge, and that, therefore, the convictions of the petitioners, are illegal. I cannot agree. These are minor details which do not affect the main merits of the case. This is not a case as in In re Abibulla Ravuthan, 39 Mad. 770 : A. I. R. 1916 Mad. 407 : (1916) Cri. L. J. 623 and Mohideen Abdul Khadir v. Emperor, 27 Mad. 238, relied on by the counsel for the petitioners, where the prosecution had not proved the defamatory allegations and acts at all, and only the examination of the accused had implicated them, This is a case where the prosecution witnesses had fully proved the defamatory acts and allegations by all the petitioners from February to September 1947 (see P. W. 1's deposition though certain minor details regarding dates and documents were elicited from the statements of the accused. All the petitioners were admittedly present at this panchayat of all castes and did make the defamatory allegations and did outcaste P. W. 1. So, I am of opinion that the lower Court's convictions and sentences of the petitioners are all correct and proper.

3. It is obvious that while a caste, like the Vannia caste, will have a customary right to go into allegations of immorality made against a woman of their tribe, in order to safeguard caste purity and prestige, no such customary right has been given for a composite assembly consisting of various castes like barbers, pipers, washer-man, yadavas and others, as in the present case, to join with the Yannias in holding such an assembly wherein such defamatory statements are made and acted on and a Vannia is outcasted. The terms 'caste-Hindus' 'non-Muslims,' 'non-Brahmins,' 'non-Europeans' are all terms of recent growth, mostly for political purposes, and include composite groups of widely different castes, and the power to hold enquiries into the unchastity of a woman belonging to a particular caste, and to outcaste, have not yet been given to such composite bodies either by Hindu law, or custom or statute. So, privilege, which could have been claimed by the petitioners had they confined to panchayat to members of the interested caste, namely, Vannikula Kshatrias, will not be available as all kinds of castes and tribes were allowed to take part in the enquiry. It was not a caste panchayat outcasting a member of that caste for a caste offence.

4. This petition deserves to be and is hereby dismissed.


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