BILLA MASTHAN Vs. STATE
LAWS(APH)-1954-9-4
HIGH COURT OF ANDHRA PRADESH
Decided on September 14,1954

IN RE: BILLA MASTHAN Appellant
VERSUS
Respondents

JUDGEMENT

- (1.) An interesting question of law arises for decision in this Criminal Revision Petition. In C. C. No. 143 of 1953 the petitioner herein was charged for two distinct offencesunder Ss. 408 and 477-A, Penal Code, respectively on 29-12-1953. On the next day, the Assistant Public Prosecutor, Gurjaal, filed a petition stating that the two offences being distinct, both the charges should not be tried together and that the charges under S. 477-A, Penal Code, might be separated and fresh proceedings might be permitted to be started against the accused in respect of the said offence. The Additional First Class Magistrate passed the following order on that application: "I hold that the charges under Ss. 477-A and 408, Penal Code, cannot be tried together in one trial. Hence the charge under S. 477-A, Penal Code, will be tried separately and the case against B. Masta under S. 477-A, Penal Code, will be registered as C. C. No. 308 of 1953 and proceeded with."
(2.) Another petition was filed on the same day by the Assistant Public Prosecutor stating that, in view of the separation of the charge under S. 477-A Penal Code, the charge in C. C. No. 143 of 1953 might be amended by dropping the charge under S. 477-A and the following order was passed on that application. "The accused Billa Mastan has been charged with offences under Ss. 408 and 477-A, Penal Code, oin 29-12-1953 in this case. since the two charges are distinct and are to be tried separtely, the charges framed on 29-12-1953 are hereby amended by elimination of charge under S. 477-A, Penal Code."
(3.) The question that falls to be decided is, as to the effect of the order dated 30-12-1953, amending the charges framed on 29-12-1953 and eliminating the charge under S. 477-A, Penal Code. The argument addressed by Mr. Sarma, the learned Advocate for the petitioner was that the withdrawal of the charge in respect of offence under S. 477-A, Penal Code, must be regarded as made under s. 494, Criminal P. C. that under Cl. (b) it operated as an acquittal in respect of that offence, that the Additional First Class Magistrate, Narasaraopet, had not jurisdiction to try the petitioner under S. 477-A, Penal Code in C. C. No. 308 of 1953 and that the conviction and sentence passed on the petitioner to undergo rigorous imprisonment for four months, which was confirmed on appeal by the Court of Session, Guntur, in Cr. A No. 53 of 1954 was unsustainable.In support of that contention, he mainly relied on the decision of Govinda Menon J. in -- In re, velayudha Mudali, AIR 1949 Mad 508 (A). The learned Public Prosecutor contended that the withdrawal of the charge was not under S. 494 Criminal P. C., that the amendment of the charge framed on 29-12-1953 did not attract the terms of S. 403, Criminal P. C., and tht the decision relied on by the petitioner was distinguishable.;


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