LAMBODAR PANIGRAHI Vs. STATE OF ORISSA
HIGH COURT OF ORISSA
STATE OF ORISSA
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K.B. Panda, J. -
(1.) THE Appellant has been convicted under Section 5(1)(c) read with Section 5(2) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1947 (Act II of 1947), hereinafter referred to as the Act, and sentenced to rigorous imprisonment for one year by the Special Judge, Vigilance, Bhubaneswar, on 18 -12 -1971.
(2.) THE Appellant was an Assistant Sub -Registrar under the Government of Orissa, Co -operative Societies. From March, 1964 to June, 1967 he was posted as Secretary,. Regional Cooperative Marketing Society (R.C.M.S.), Jagat singh pur. As such, his duty was to receive cash and goods, disburse money and maintain accounts. He was also in charge of the stock and stores of the said R.C.M.S. at Jagatsinghpur.
It is alleged by the prosecution that on 31 -8 -1964 he received Rs. 201/ - from Sridhar Das, the Secretary of Nuagan Society, sent through the cart -man (p.w. 7) and sold 12 bags of fertilisers to p.w. 8 from the R.C.M.S., Jagatsinghpur. In token of that he granted a receipt Ex. 8 dated 31 -8 -1964. This amount was not shown in the Cash book Ex. 9 nor the cash taken into the account. Hence the allegation that he misappropriated the said amount.
There was another charge in respect of supply of groundnuts; but the learned Special Judge held the Appellant not guilty of that charge and so need not be referred to here.
The plea of the Appellant was that since 1954 he was a public servant but not during the period of his deputation to the R.C.M.S., Jagatsinghpur. He was in over -all charge of the stocks, stores and cash for the R.C.M.S. but was not in the detail charge of every item of property for which the Board had appointed a staff. He admitted to have granted receipt Ex. 8 but denied to have received the amount of Rs. 201/ - mentioned in it and that he did not supply 12 bags of fertilisers himself. His specific case was that he refused to supply any more fertilisers to Nuagaon Society as it has in heavy arrears. At that time p.w. 2, the Secretary of Mandasahe Grama Panchayat, who was present there, sold 12 bags of fertilisers from the stock of the said Grama Panchayat kept at the R.C.M.S., Jagatsinghpur, to Nuagaon Grama Panchayat, on receipt of Rs. 201/ - from the cartman (p.w. 7). As he had not sold the fertilisers from the R.C.M.S. stock nor had received the amount, this was not shown in the cash book, nor was there any corresponding entry in the stock register.
(3.) THE prosecution examined 12 witnesses and the defence three. The learned Special Judge negatived the legal plea that the Appellant was not a public servant while working as the Secretary to the R.C.M.S., Jagatsinghpur, and therefore, not amenable to the provisions of the Act. The learned Judge also negatived the plea that the Appellant had not sold the fertilisers from the R.C.M.S. stock and had not received the amount. Hence the conviction.;
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