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Emperor Vs. Sagar Singh and anr. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
CourtKolkata
Decided On
Judge
AppellantEmperor
RespondentSagar Singh and anr.
Excerpt:
penal code (act xlv of 1860), section 168 - police act (v of 1861), section 10--police officer carrying on shop--offence. - .....whoever, being a public servant and being legally bound as such public servant not to engage in trade, engages in trade shall be punished with simple imprisonment, etc. this rule was obtained on the ground that the facts alleged by the prosecution do not constitute an offence under that section. the point which has been taken is that the prosecution has not shown that the two petitioners are legally bound as public servants not to engage in trade. in the bengal police manual in paragraph 812 there is this provision: 'without the previous sanction of the local government a police officer may not engage in any trade or undertake any employment other than his public duties.' as to that, the argument of the petitioners is that the prohibition is not a statutory prohibition. upon that.....
Judgment:

1. The two petitioners before us are brothers; the first petitioner is a Habildar, and the second petitioner, a constable of the Armed Police Reserve at Mymensingh. They have been convicted of an offence under Section 168, Indian Penal Code, and sentenced to two months' simple imprisonment each. Section 168, Indian Penal Code, lays down that whoever, being a public servant and being legally bound as such public servant not to engage in trade, engages in trade shall be punished with simple imprisonment, etc. This Rule was obtained on the ground that the facts alleged by the prosecution do not constitute an offence under that section. The point which has been taken is that the prosecution has not shown that the two petitioners are legally bound as public Servants not to engage in trade. In the Bengal Police Manual in paragraph 812 there is this provision: 'Without the previous sanction of the Local Government a Police Officer may not engage in any trade or undertake any employment other than his public duties.' As to that, the argument of the petitioners is that the prohibition is not a statutory prohibition. Upon that question, in my opinion, it is not necessary to express any definite opinion. For our present purpose it is unnecessary to say whether Police Officers are or are not legally bound by that prohibition within the meaning of Section 168. It is sufficient to refer to Section 10 of the Police Act, 1861. Section 10 enacts 'No Police Officer shall engage in any employment or office whatever, other than his duties under this Act, unless expressly permitted to do so in writing by the Inspector-General.' The words 'any employment or office whatever' appear to me to be wide enough to cover the case of a Police Officer who engages in trade. What has been found in the present case is that these petitioners were carrying on and conducting a shop not far from the Police barracks where they actually sold grocery stores. I see no reason to say that their conduct in so doing does not come within the prohibition contained in Section 10, which I have read. Without straining language a man may be employed or may employ himself in trade or industry or any other occupation. In this case it has clearly been found that the petitioners were engaged or employed in keeping a grocery shop. In that view there is no ground for disturbing the convictions and this Rule must he discharged. The petitioners must surrender and serve out the remainder of the sentences imposed upon them.


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