1. These four rules arise out of four separate prosecutions for putting up scaffoldings in a public lane belonging to the Corporation of Calcutta without obtaining licenses for so doing from the Corporation. The petitioner was apparently charged with obstructing this lane on four separate occasions. For each of these obstructions he was convicted and fined Rs. 20.
2. The ground which has been urged on his behalf by Mr. Talukdar is that the separate prosecutions and convictions were not maintainable and illegal, because the obstruction was one and the same in each of these cases and therefore he could not be tried and convicted four times for the same offence. Whether the obstruction for which he was prosecuted was the same in all the four cases or was a different obstruction is obviously a question of fact. When the petitioner was prosecuted on these four charges he never alleged in his defence that the obstructions complained of were one and the same. This point obviously turns upon a question of fact which was not raised by the petitioner when the cases were tried; and I have no material before ma on which I can possibly decide whether the cases referred to the same obstruction or different obstructions.
3. Mr. Talukdar had then argued that the convictions and sentences are bad in law, because the learned Magistrate did not examine the complainant according to the mandatory provisions of law before he issued the processes. The answer to this contention lies in; proviso (aa) to Section 200, Criminal P.C. which provides:
when the complaint is made in writing nothing herein contained shall be deemed to require the examination of a complainant in any case in which the complaint has been made by a Court or by a publics servant acting or purporting to act in the discharge of his official duties.
4. The person who made the complaints was a Conservancy Overseer and purported to act in the discharge of his official duties. He was clearly a Municipal officer or a servant of the Corporation and therefore under Section 554, Calcutta Municipal Act, 1923 he is a public servant within the meaning of Section 21 I.P.C. There is therefore no substance whatever in this contention.
5. Lastly Mr. Talukdar has argued that in the facts and circumstances of the case the conviction is improper. As far as I can understand Mr. Talukdar he would seem to urge that as the building is now finished and the whole occurrence took place some time ago the prosecution was improper. He does not suggest that it was illegal. Why it would in such circumstances be considered improper I entirely fail to understand. The mere fact that the building the construction of which caused the obstructions has been finished would be no reason for condoning the offence of obstructing the road during the construction of the building.
6. These are the only points which Mr. Talukdar has argued. The result is all four rules stand discharged.