K.C. Das Gupta, J.
1. This Rule is directed against an order of the learned Sessions Judge, Burdwan, acquitting in appeal the opposite parties who had been convicted by the learned Magistrate, Asansol. of offence under Section 27 of the Industrial Disputes Act and sentenced to pay a fine of Rs. 250/- each.
2. In acquitting the opposite parties the learned Sessions Judge did not go into the findings of fact of the learned Magistrate but held that the Court acted without jurisdiction in trying the case as cognizance was taken in contravention of Section 34 of the Industrial Disputes Act. Section 34 is in these words :
No Court shall take cognizance of any offence, punishable under this Act or of the abetment of any such offence, save on complaint made by or under the authority of the appropriate Government.'
It was contended before the learned Sessions Judge that the authority given under this section to be sufficient authority in law must satisfy the test laid down for 'sanction' for prosecution by the Privy Council in -- 'Gokulchand Dwarkadas v. The King' , and that test had not been satisfied.
3. It is contended before us by Mr. Dutt on behalf of the petitioner on the authority of a decision of this Court in the case of -- 'Ramdas v. K.M. Sen' : (1956)IILLJ323Cal , that the principle laid down by the 'Privy Council in connection with 'sanction' for prosecution was not applicable to the 'authority' that may be given under Section 34 of this Act.
4. In my judgment it is not necessary for us to consider in this case whether 'Ramdas's case (B)', was rightly decided or whether it should be referred to a larger Bench for consideration of the matter. Assuming however for the purpose of the present case that 'Ramdas's case (B)', was rightly decided and the principles laid down by the Privy Council as regards 'sanction' for prosecution are not applicable to the 'authority' that may be given under Section 34 of the Industrial Disputes Act, I am still of opinion that the authority given in the present case was insufficient.
I do not see how it can be gainsaid that the authority that may be given must refer to the particular offence. The statute speaks of complaint being made as regards an offence by the Government or under the authority of the Government. The whole scheme of legislation in this Section clearly is that there may not be indiscriminate complainants. It is clearly the intention of the Legislature that if an offence has been committed, Government will decide whether it will make the complaint itself or whether it will authorise somebody else to make a complaint.
To speak of an authority given in general terms without any reference to any particular offence is, in my judgment to ignore the whole intention of the Legislature in this matter.
5. The authority that is produced in this case mentions in a schedule the names of certain persons as those who have committed the offence and says :
'In exercise of the powers conferred by Sub-section (1) of Section 34 of the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947 (14 of 1947) the Governor is pleased to authorise Sri Jiwan Das, Works Manager, Aluminium Corporation of India Ltd., Jaykaynagar, District Burdwan, to make for the purpose referred to in the said section, a complaint in the Court of the Sub-Divisional Officer, Asansol, against the persons specified in the schedule hereto in respect of offence punishable under Section 27 of the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947.'
There is no indication whether one or more offences have been committed, no indication where the offence was committed, no indication when the offence is said to have been committed. In my judgment the authority cannot be said to be an authority to make the complaint that was actually made in this particular case.
6. Mr. Dutt prayed that at least his client may be given an opportunity to satisfy the Court by producing additional evidence that the authority that was given was intended to refer to the particular offence for which the complaint was lodged. No such prayer was made in the Court of Appeal below; and we do not. think we shall be justified in directing additional evidence to be taken.
7. I would accordingly discharge this Rule.
8. I agree.