NARAYAN DAS Vs. STATE OF ORISSA
HIGH COURT OF ORISSA
STATE OF ORISSA
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J.K.Mohanty, J. -
(1.) THIS revision is directed against the judgment of the Sessions Judge, Mayurbhanj -Keonjhar in Criminal Appeal No. 78 -K of 1975 confirming an order of conviction of the Petitioner under Section 16(1)(a) of the Prevention of Food Adulteration Act (Act No. 37 of 1954) (hereinafter called the 'Act') and sentence to undergo S. I. for one week and to pay a fine of Rs. 300/ -, in default to undergo S. I. for a further period of one week passed by the Subordinate Judge -cum -Magistrate 1st Class, Keonjhar.
(2.) THE case of the prosecution is that the Petitioner was a retail grocer at Harichandanpur bazar and one Gurucharan Prusti (p. w. 3) was his Salesman. On 29 -9 -1974 at about 1. 30 p. m. the Food Inspector (p. w. 1) inspected the shop of the Petitioner and suspecting that Niger oil and Bengal gram stored for sale in the shop to be adulterated made a statutory purchase of Niger oil and Bengal gram from the Salesman Gurucharan Prusti (p. w. 3) in the absence of the Petitioner from the shop after serving requisite notice (Ext. 1). He also obtained a receipt (Ext. 2) from p. w.3 in evidence of the purchase made p. w. 1 sent the articles purchased by him to the Public Analyst, Government of Orissa and obtained his opinion as per Exts. 6 and 7 that the samples of Niger Oil and Bengal Gram were adulterated. On receipt of the report he obtained order of sanction and filed the prosecution report before the Magistrate against the accused Petitioner, who, according to p. w. 1, was the owner of the shop. On behalf of the prosecution three witnesses were examined. P. w. 1 is the Food Inspector, p. w. 2 is the field worker of the Family Planning Department and is a witness to the purchase of the articles. P. w. 3 Gurucharan Prusti is alleged to be the Salesman from whom the samples were taken. The plea of the Petitioner is denial of the charge and he has further stated that he is not the owner of the shop in question, but the shop belongs to Gurucharan Prusti (p. w. 3).
(3.) MR . Das, learned Counsel appearing for the Petitioner, submits that the Petitioner has been illegally convicted; that he is neither the owner of the shop nor he has sold the articles; that he was not present in the shop: that the owner of the shop is p. w. 3 ; and that assuming for the sake of argument that the Petitioner is the owner of the shop, the provisions of Sections 10(7) and 11(4) of the Act and Rules 7(3) and 9(j) of the Prevention of Food Adulteration Rules, 1955 (hereinafter called the Rules) have not been complied with and the Petitioner IS entitled to acquittal.
Mr. Das further submits that p. ws. 1 and 2 belong to the same Department (which is admitted by p. w.2) and they have said that the Petitioner is the owner of the shop. No other independent person has been examined to prove that Petitioner is the owner of the shop. P. w. 3, who is alleged to be the Salesman according to the prosecution, has categorically stated that he is the owner of the shop. P. w. 1 has stated that the Food Licence stands in the name of the accused Petitioner, but no step was taken to prove the same which would have clinched the issue. On the other hand, in the receipt (Ext. 2) which has been signed by Gurucharan Prusti (p. w. 3) it has been mentioned:
The following commodity of quantity. (l) Niger oil...375 grams (2) Bengal Grane...750 grams has been purchased with the reasonable prices by the Food Inspector. Keonjhar @ Rs. 5.72 p. for analysis which is kept in stock in my shop for sell situated at Harichandanpur bazar, Dist. -Keonjhar.
Admittedly the accused Petitioner was not present at the time of sale. The sample bottles were also handed over to p. w. 3 Gurucharan Prusti as per Ext. 3.;
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