A M KUTTYSANKARAN NAIR Vs. P V KUMARAN NAIR
LAWS(KER)-1963-8-7
HIGH COURT OF KERALA
Decided on August 02,1963

A.M.KUTTYSANKARAN NAIR Appellant
VERSUS
P.V.KUMARAN NAIR Respondents


Referred Judgements :-

COOPER V. SLADE [REFERRED TO]
WOOLMINGTON V. DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC PROSECUTION [REFERRED TO]
REX V. CARR-BRIANT [REFERRED TO]
R. V. DUNBAR [REFERRED TO]
VINAYAK ATMARAM V. SHANTARAM JANARDHAN [REFERRED TO]
SHEO SWARUP V. KING EMPEROR [REFERRED TO]
LALMOHAN SINGH V. THE KING [REFERRED TO]
C S D SWAMI VS. STATE [REFERRED TO]
HAL BANS SINGH VS. STATE OF PUNJAB [REFERRED TO]
K M NANAVATI VS. STATE OF MAHARASHTRA [REFERRED TO]
STATE OF MAHARASHTRA VS. LAXMAN JAIRAM [REFERRED TO]



Cited Judgements :-

SHYBIMON VS. HARIDAS [LAWS(KER)-2010-3-20] [REFERRED TO]
T M A PAI FOUNDATION VS. STATE OF KARNATAKA [LAWS(SC)-2002-10-89] [REFERRED TO 276]
STATE GOVERNMENT OF MANIPUR VS. KAKCHINGTABAM GOURACHANDRA SARMA, ASCUSED, [LAWS(GAU)-1964-9-1] [REFERRED TO]
STATE GOVERNMENT OF MANIPUR VS. KAKCHINGTABAM GOURACHANDRA SARMA, ASCUSED [LAWS(GAU)-1967-10-2] [REFERRED]


JUDGEMENT

- (1.)This is an appeal by special leave under S.417(3) Crl. P. C., against the order of acquittal passed by the Munsiff Magistrate of Pattambi on a private complaint filed by the appellant. His case was that the respondents got printed and published a leaflet Ext. P l containing false and baseless allegation against him with intention to harm his reputation and to lower him in the estimate of others and thereby his reputation had been considerably lowered and he had fallen in the estimate of his friends and the public in general and the accused have thereby committed an offence punishable under S.500 of the Penal Code.
Ext. P l is the printed copy of the leaflet. Among other things it is stated in Ext. P l that the appellant who is the manager of K. P. R. P. Secondary High School, Kongad has from the very beginning, been in the habit of withholding a portion of the salary due to the teachers and that even after the system of direct payment of the salary through the headmasters was introduced by the Government the manager wanted a certain amount from each of the teachers and had induced the Headmaster to deduct a portion of the amount from their salary.

(2.)The fact that the notice complained of was got printed and was published by the respondents has been amply proved by the prosecution and was, in fact, admitted by the defence not only in the reply which they sent through the lawyer to the notice sent by the appellant but in their statement under S.342 Cr.P.C. The learned Magistrate who tried the case found the allegation in Ext. P1 to be per se defamatory. That the pamphlet is on the face of it calculated to harm the reputation of Pw. 1 can admit of no doubt, for what the notice says is that the manager was misappropriating for himself a portion of the salary of the teachers and if the imputation is false it would be highly defamatory of the appellant. The learned Magistrate considered the evidence that was led regarding the plea of justification by truth and acquitted the accused on the ground that the imputations made by the accused were true and would come within exceptions 1 and 9 to S.499 of the Penal Code. The correctness of the conclusion arrived at by the learned Magistrate is challenged in this appeal.
(3.)To appreciate the scope of the exception it is necessary to read the relevant provisions. S.499 reads:
"Whoever by words either spoken or intended to be read, or by signs or by visible representations, makes or publishes any imputation concerning any person intending to harm, or knowing or having reason to believe that such imputation will harm, the reputation of such person, is said, except in the cases hereinafter excepted, to defame that person."

We are not concerned with the explanations. Then follow the exceptions. Exception 1 is in the following terms:

"It is not defamation to impute anything which is true concerning any person, if it be for the public good that the imputation should be made or published. Whether or not it is for the public good is a question of fact."

Exception 9 reads:

"It is not defamation to make an imputation on the character of another, provided that the imputation be made in good faith for the protection of the interest of the person making it, or of any other person, or for the public good."

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