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Jayaramulu and anr. Vs. Emperor - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
CourtChennai
Decided On
Judge
Reported inAIR1923Mad50; 71Ind.Cas.504
AppellantJayaramulu and anr.
RespondentEmperor
Excerpt:
madras abkari act (i of 1886), section 55(2) - 'possession,' meaning of. - .....the liquor was found in a cattle-shed which belonged to accused nos. 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 second and third accused should also be considered to have been in possession of the liqour because they were the owners of the shed, but i think the 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 license that can be punished under the section. in the circumstances of the.....
Judgment:
ORDER

Krishnan, J.

1. This revision case is filed by accused Nos. 2 and 3 only in Calendar Case 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 1886--the Madras Abkari Act--for being in possession of liquor without a proper license obtained for the purpose. The first accused has not come up here at all. It is argued on behalf of accused Nos. 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 Nos. 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 second and third accused should also be considered to have been in possession of the liqour because they were the owners of the shed, but I think the 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 license that can be punished under the section. In the circumstances of the case, there is no clear evidence that accused Nos. 2 and 3 had anything to do with the 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 Nos. 2 and 3 and the fines, if paid, will be refunded.


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