1. This is an appeal by the Corporation of Madras and it is against an acquittal in a case under the Prevention of Food Adulteration Act. P. W. 1 a sanitary inspector attached to the Corporation purchased as per Ex. P. 2, 650 ml. of cow's milk from the accused at 6-15 a. m. on the 21st of June 1969. P. W. 1 put the milk into three bottles, sealed them, retained one with him, handed over one to the accused and sent the third to the Public Analyst for analysis. The Analyst, on examination, found that there was a deficiency of fat to the extent of 26 per cent, in the milk which he analysed. A complaint was filed against the accused for an offence under Section 2 read with Sections 7 and 16 of the Prevention of Food Adulteration Act, 1954. P. W. 1 deposed to the above facts. When questioned in Court, the accused stated that he gave only fresh milk which he had just then milked from the cow and that the deficiency, if any, must be due to the poor quality of the feed which the cow should have had. D. W. 1 deposed that he actually saw the accused milking the cow in front of his house and that at that time P. W. 1 came and took the sample. Believing his evidence the learned Magistrate held that there had been no addition of water to the milk sold to P. W. 1 and that the deficiency might possibly be due to poor cattle feed. On this finding he acquitted the accused. The correctness of this acquittal is now canvassed in this appeal.
2. The prosecution is for selling milk which was deficient in fat. When the article sold is found to be below the standard prescribed by the rules, it has to be presumed that the article is adulterated, and the accused has no right to prove before the Court, that notwithstanding the deficiency in standard, the stuff, in fact, was not adulterated. The report of the Analyst shows that therei was a deficiency of 26% of fat in the milk sold to P. W. 1. As pointed out by the Supreme Court in M. V. Joshi v. M. U. Shimpi, 1961 MLJ (Cri) 649 : (1962) 2 Cri LJ 696 :
Under the Prevention of Food Adulteration Act, selling butter below the prescribed standard is deemed to be adulterated. If the standard is not maintained, the butter, by a fiction, becomes an adulterated food. A dealer in such butter cannot adduce evidence to prove that, notwithstanding the deficiency in standard, it is not adulterated.
3. The order of acquittal is wrong. The same is set aside and the respondent (accused) is convicted under Section 16 (1) of the Prevention of Food Adulteration Act and sentenced to pay a fine of Rs. 50/-(Rupees fifty) in default to undergo simple imprisonment for two weeks. Time for payment of fine one month.
4. The appeal is allowed.