1. The petnr. in this ease has been convicted under Section 47, Madras District Police Act, & sentenced to pay a fine of Rs. 25.
2. The allegations on which the petnr. was charged are contained in Ex P.-1, the complaint sent by the petnr. to the D. S. P. on 2-2 1948. He alleged therein that the Police Station-house Officer at Ponganoor arrested one Subbireddi, a resident of Mugavadi on 29 1-1948 in consequence of information given by some individual that the said Subbireddi had been roaring hemp plants in his own betel garden. Ho subsequently prepared a mahazar for the seizure of the hemp plants, but afterwards the mahazar was torn off after receiving gratification from the said Subbireddi & attempts were being made by the said Subbireddi to turn the case against the petnr. The mahazar is said to have been signed by five persona. They are (1) Karnam Padmanabha Sastri, (2) Village Munsif Subbireddi, (3) Ramakkagari Venkatareddi, (4) Muniki Gadeppa & (5) Thalari Venkatappa. In Ex. P. 1 the petnr. asked the D. S. P. to send a special police officer to enquire into thematter. The petn. was enquired into, & the police coming to the conclusion that the allegations against the police station-house officer were false & maliciously made by the petnr. filed a charge-sheet against the petnr. herein. It is in evidence that on 29-1-1948 the Police station-house officer did go to the betel garden of Subbireddi & seized some hemp plants, & the prosecution has filed the mahazar said to have been prepared on the occasion. It is Ex. P.-2 in the case. It mentions that on the western side of the garden hemp plants were reared in a bunch along with the plaintain tree & jasmine tree in the second pod. In the fourth pod two hemp plants were reared along with the plaintain trees, & on the north eastern side there was one hemp tree along with avisi tree in the first pod, & there was another hemp tree along with jasmine trees in the second pod. In all there were seven plants. It further states that these plants appeared to have been planted 2 or 3 days prior to the visit. According to the mahazar they appeared to be 1 or 1 1/2 months old. It is the prosecution ease that this is the mahazar that was prepared on the occasion & that it was not torn off as alleged by the petnr. herein ; nor wag there any different mahazar prepared.
3. To refute the allegations of the petnr. in Ex. P.-l the prosecution examined four witnesses, of whom P. W. 1 is the Station-house officer who went to the garden & seized the hemps. It was against him that the petnr. complained that he received gratification & tore off the mahazar & was colluding with his enemies to foist a false case on him. P. W. 2 is the Sub Inspector, a formal witness, who speaks to the investigation on Ex. P.-1. P. W. 3 is the village munsif. He has attested EX. P. 2, the present mahazar & he speaks in support of the prosecution case that no other mahazar was prepared & that this was the only one that was prepared on this occasion. The allegation in Ex P.-l was that the police went along with this witness & the karnam to his house & there tore off the previous mahazar & prepared another one, the allegation therefore was that the village munsif was also a party to the destruction of the previous mahazar. There is eviderca that the village munsif, P. W. 3 belongs to the faction opposite to that of the petnr. The only other witness is Subbireddi, in whose garden the hemp plants are said to have been grown by him. He is also an interested witness.
4. The evidence, therefore, against the petnr. consists only in the evidence of the three witnesses who are interested in saying that they have not destroyed the previous mahazar. Theattestors to the alleged first mahazar were, as already stated, five in number of whom only the village munsif who was a party to the present mahazar was examined. The other four attestors have not been examined to show that no such mahazar was prepared before. In a case where a person is charged with having made false allegations against a police officer, it is necessary that the falsity must be proved to its hilt by examining all the witnesses mentioned by him. It has been pointed out by Reilly J. in In re Sankaram Servai : AIR1929Mad496 that 'where a person is charged under Section 211 of making a false report it is not for him to make out that his report was true until it has been clearly traversed by evidence produced by the prosecution showing that it was false.' In this case, the whole evidence has not been let in to show that the allegation made by the petnr. are false. The case, therefore, has not been proved beyond all reasonable doubt.
5. The conviction & sentence are set aside, & the petnr. is acquitted. The fine, if paid, will be refunded.