Decided on August 23,1944

Ab C Respondents


Leach, J. - (1.) The petitioner was charged before the First Class Bench of Magistrates, Cuddapah, Under Section 5 (1)(b), Madras Prevention of Adulteration Act, 1918, read with Rule 40 (b) of the rules framed there under with having mixed 50 per cent, of mahua flower, coffee husk and cereal with coffee prepared by him. It was said that on the label on the packets which were seized by the Health Officer appear the words: "Coffee powder 50 per cent., Indian Chicory 50 per cent." It was argued that mahua flowers are known as Indian Chicory. As pointed out by the Sessions Judge on appeal, even if this be so we express no opinion on the point there was still adulteration because of the admixture of coffee husk and cereal. The petitioner was convicted by the Magistrate of the charge of selling adulterated coffee and the goods seized were ordered to be destroyed under the provisions of Section 12(2) of the Act. The conviction was on appeal set aside by the Sessions Judge who however concurred in the order for the destruction of the goods. The Provincial Government has not preferred an appeal against the acquittal and the finding that the petitioner had not committed the offence of selling adulterated coffee must be accepted.
(2.) The only question which has been argued for the petitioner is whether the order for the destruction of the goods was lawfully passed. It was suggested by the learned advocate for the petitioner that as the rules under the Act do not deal with the, destruction of goods seized there was no power in the Court to pass an order for destruction. The learned advocate has overlooked entirely the provisions of Section 12(2) of the Act, which says that whether or not a complaint is laid before a Magistrate of any offence under the Penal Code, or under the Act, if it appears to the Magistrate on taking the evidence that an article is adulterated or other than what it purports or is represented to be, he may inter alia order the article to be destroyed. That the goods seized were adulterated within the meaning of the Act is quite clear and the order for the destruction is not only a lawful one but is a very proper one. The petition is dismissed. Petition dismissed.;

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