Decided on January 14,1983

STATE Respondents


- (1.) MR. Sambhu Nath Banerjee, an Advocate of this Court and formerly the Deputy Legal Remembrancer, west Bengal, died on 9. 6. 82 at the S. S. K. M. Hospital, Calcutta, and his cremation took place at Bally, Howrah. The deceased's son Sri Madhusudan Banerjee, an Advocate of this Court and the petitioner herein, applied to the Corporation of Calcutta for a death certificate of his late father and the chief Law Officer by a letter dated 22. 9,82, copy of which is annexure 'e' to the petition replied that as the cremation did not take place within the Calcutta Corporation limits no certificate can be issued. The Bally municipality also by a letter dated 8/9. 9. 1982, copy of which is Annexure 'c' to the petition, expressed its inability to issue a death certificate as the death took place in the S. S. K. M. Hospital in Calcutta.
(2.) I have heard Mr. P. K. Ghosh appearing on behalf of the petitioner and Mr. Ramkrishna Datta Chowdhury appearing on behalf of the Calcutta Corporation Authorities. Mr. Ghosh has submitted that as the death of the petitioner's father occurred in the S. S. K. M. Hospital in Calcutta within the jurisdiction of the Corporation of Calcutta, the medical officer in charge of the hospital was bound to furnish the relevant particulars with regard to the deceased to the Health Officer of the Calcutta Corporation, who would issue a certificate in terms of section 507 of the Calcutta Municipal act, 1951 ( hereinafter referred to as the act Mr. Datta Chowdhury, on the other hand, submits that according to the prevailing practice of the Corporation a death certificate cannot be issued unless the cremation takes place within the Calcutta corporation limits.
(3.) I am unable to appreciate Mr. Datta chowdhury's submission. There is no provision in the Act which requires that cremation and/or burial within the Corporation limits should be a condition precedent to the grant of a death certificate. On the other hand, section 505 read with the second proviso of section 507 of the Act makes it clear that the medical officer in charge of a hospital where a death takes place is required within a period of 12 hours to send to the health officer a written notice containing the particulars as laid down in Schedule XXI of the Act. Such an information, copy of which is annexure 'd' to the petition, was sent to the Corporation Authorities. Therefore, i see no difficulty why the Chief Health officer cannot grant a death certificate to the petitioner.;

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