K M NANAVATI Vs. STATE OF BOMBAY NOW MAHARASHTRA
LAWS(SC)-1960-9-2
SUPREME COURT OF INDIA (FROM: BOMBAY)
Decided on September 05,1960

K.M.NANAVATI Appellant
VERSUS
STATE OF BOMBAY Respondents


Referred Judgements :-

DIRECTOR OF RATIONING AND DISTRIBUTION V. CORPORATION OF CAL [REFERRED]
BRITISH COAL CORPORATION VS. KING [REFERRED]
PROVINCE OF BOMBAY VS. MUNICIPAL CORPORATION OF THE CITY OF BOMBAY [REFERRED]
HENRIETTA MUIR EDWARDS VS. ATTORNEY GENERAL OF CANDA [REFERRED]



Cited Judgements :-

RADHAKRISHNAN VS. UNION OF INDIA [LAWS(MAD)-2019-7-179] [REFERRED TO]
BHANWAR LAL GODARA VS. STATE OF RAJASTHAN [LAWS(RAJ)-2004-9-52] [REFERRED TO]
UNION OF INDIA VS. SUSHMA SONI [LAWS(RAJ)-2013-7-11] [REFERRED TO]
KHUHAL BAPURAO PAWAR VS. STATE OF MAHARASHTRA [LAWS(BOM)-2008-9-219] [REFERRED TO]
BANAMBAR BEHERA AND TWO ORS. VS. STATE [LAWS(ORI)-1990-1-24] [REFERRED TO]
M M KOCHAR PETITIONER VS. STATE RESPONDENT [LAWS(DLH)-1968-1-4] [REFERRED TO]
SANTOSHI TEL UTPADAK KENDRA VS. DEPUTY COMMISSIONER [LAWS(BOM)-1978-7-56] [REFERRED TO]
ATAUR MRIDHA @ ATAUR VS. STATE [LAWS(BANG)-2017-2-2] [REFERRED TO]
PERARIVALAN A. G. VS. STATE, THROUGH SUPERINTENDENT OF POLICE CBI [LAWS(SC)-2022-5-119] [REFERRED TO]
A.G. PERARIVALAN VS. STATE OF TAMIL NADU [LAWS(SC)-2022-5-74] [REFERRED TO]
VIVEK RAI AND ORS. VS. HIGH COURT OF JHARKHAND AND ORS. [LAWS(SC)-2015-2-8] [REFERRED TO]
STATE OF HARYANA VS. JAGDISH [LAWS(SC)-2010-3-9] [REFERRED TO]
M S PAULOSE VS. VARGHESE [LAWS(KER)-1998-7-34] [REFERRED]
S Sant Singh VS. Secretary Home Department Govt of Maharashtra [LAWS(BOM)-2005-12-45] [REFERRED TO]
GUL SINGH @ GULAB VS. THE STATE OF MADHYA PRADESH [LAWS(MPH)-2017-10-58] [REFERRED TO]
UNION OF INDIA VS. V. SRIHARAN @ MURUGAN [LAWS(SC)-2015-12-10] [REFERRED TO]
CHANDRA MOHAN VS. STATE OF U P [LAWS(ALL)-1967-11-7] [REFERRED TO]
JAYANT VEERAPPA SHETTY VS. STATE OF MAHARASHTRA [LAWS(BOM)-1985-9-5] [REFERRED TO]
WORKMEN OF STATE BANK OF INDIAGARHCHIROLI BRANCH VS. PRESIDING OFFICER [LAWS(BOM)-1989-8-33] [REFERRED TO]
UMESH KUMAR SINGH ALIAS MUNNA SINGH VS. STATE OF RAJASTHAN [LAWS(RAJ)-2012-6-4] [REFERRED TO]
RAMKRISHNA VS. SECRETARY HOME DEPT VIDHANA SOUDHA [LAWS(KAR)-2012-3-32] [REFERRED TO]
AIRCEL CELLULAR LTD VS. UNION OF INDIA [LAWS(MAD)-2016-8-24] [REFERRED TO]
S. SANT SINGH VS. SECRETARY, HOME DEPARTMENT, GOVT. OF MAHARASHTRA [LAWS(BOM)-2005-2-183] [REFERRED TO]
LATIF CHHMTUMIYA SHAIKH VS. STATE OF GUJARAT [LAWS(GJH)-2000-6-56] [REFERRED TO]
REGISTRAR, SUPREME COURT OF INDIA VS. R.S.MISRA [LAWS(DLH)-2017-11-36] [REFERRED TO]
VIKAS YADAV VS. STATE OF U.P. AND ORS. ETC. ETC. [LAWS(SC)-2016-10-20] [REFERRED TO]
SUPREME COURT ADVOCATE-ON-RECORD ASSOCIATION VS. UNION OF INDIA [LAWS(SC)-2015-10-80] [REFERRED TO]
USHA VS. STATE [LAWS(MPH)-1991-11-16] [REFERRED TO]
MADHAV SHANKAR SONAWANE AND STATE OF MAHARASHTRA VS. STATE OF MAHARASHTRA AND MADHAV SHANKAR SONAWANE [LAWS(BOM)-1982-4-35] [REFERRED TO]
SUKHWANT KAUR VS. STATE OF PUNJAB [LAWS(P&H)-2000-7-23] [REFERRED]
SUKHWINDER SINGH VS. STATE OF PUNJAB [LAWS(P&H)-2008-3-63] [REFERRED TO]
SURESH VS. STATE OF KERALA [LAWS(KER)-2006-5-40] [REFERRED TO]
VIKAS YADAV VS. STATE NCT OF DELHI [LAWS(DLH)-2016-5-102] [REFERRED TO]
NILAMBAR DAS VS. STATE OF ORISSA [LAWS(ORI)-1986-9-14] [REFERRED TO]
K M SALIM VS. STATE OF KERALA [LAWS(KER)-1985-7-3] [REFERRED TO]
S GOPINATH VS. CENTRAL UNIVERSITY OF KERALA, REPRESENTED BY ITS R [LAWS(KER)-2018-5-50] [REFERRED TO]
SUPREME COURT ADVOCATES ON RECORD ASSOCIATION S P GUPTA VS. UNION OF INDIA [LAWS(SC)-1993-10-49] [REFERRED TO]
A R ANTULAY VS. R S NAYAK [LAWS(SC)-1988-4-69] [DISTINGUISHED]
SHRIRAM BEARING LIMITED RANCHI VS. BIHAR STATE ELECTRICITY BOARD PATNA [LAWS(PAT)-1981-12-15] [REFERRED TO]
RAMESH KUMAR VS. STATE OF RAJASTHAN [LAWS(RAJ)-2013-4-25] [REFERRED TO]
RAJEEV SHARDA VS. EXECUTIVE ENGINEER, HP PWD, THEOG [LAWS(HPH)-1999-12-29] [REFERRED TO]
S.A. MIYAJAN VS. UNION OF INDIA [LAWS(MAD)-2014-2-1] [REFERRED TO]
RAMPRASAD GUPTA SON OF VISHWANATH GUPTA VS. STATE OF MAHARASHTRA [LAWS(BOM)-2019-3-11] [REFERRED TO]
REGISTRAR OF THE ORIGINAL SIDE OF CALCUTTA HIGH COURT VS. BHUPATI BHUSHAN DALAL [LAWS(CAL)-1973-8-23] [REFERRED TO]
PRESIDENT OF INDIA VS. VINAY CHANDRA MISHRA [LAWS(SC)-1995-3-129] [REFERRED TO]
SUDARSAN TRADING COMPANY LTD. AND M. VELAYUDHAN VS. GOVERNMENT OF INDIA [LAWS(KER)-1990-10-60] [REFERRED TO]
B ABDUL RAZAK VS. STATE REPRESENTED BY ITS SECRETARY TO GOVERNMENT OF TAMIL NADU [LAWS(MAD)-2017-4-291] [REFERRED TO]
SUNDARAM FINANCE LIMITED VS. STATE OF TAMIL NADU [LAWS(MAD)-1982-6-19] [REFERRED TO]
CHARAN LAL SAHU RAKESH SHROUTI RAJKUMAR KESWANI NASRIN BI VS. UNION OF INDIA [LAWS(SC)-1989-12-35] [REFERRED TO]
STATE OF UTTAR PRADESH VS. POOSU:1 NAGAU 2 RAMESHWAR PRASAD [LAWS(SC)-1976-4-1] [FOLLOWED]
HARISHANKAR GAYAPRASAD JAISWAL VS. STATE OF GUJARAT & 3 [LAWS(GJH)-2018-3-49] [REFERRED TO]
RAMESH KUMAR VS. STATE OF RAJASTHAN [LAWS(RAJ)-2013-1-11] [REFERRED TO]
AKHTAR HUSSAIN S O KHURSHID HUSSAIN VS. STATE OF MAHARASHTRA [LAWS(BOM)-1999-6-22] [REFERRED TO]
MAJOR SINGH VS. UNION OF INDIA (UOI) AND ANR. [LAWS(P&H)-1980-4-48] [REFERRED TO]
HUKAM SINGH VS. STATE OF PUNJAB [LAWS(P&H)-1974-11-8] [REFERRED TO]
SUPREME COURT BAR ASSOCIATION VS. UNION OF INDIA [LAWS(SC)-1998-4-63] [REFERRED TO]
PREM CHAND GARG VS. EXCISE COMMISSIONER U P [LAWS(SC)-1962-11-51] [REFERRED TO]
JAIL REFORMS AND CONDITIONS FOR GRANTING PAROLE TO CONVICTS VS. STATE [LAWS(KER)-2006-10-68] [REFERRED TO]
GHELABHAI VS. STATE OF MAHARASHTRA [LAWS(BOM)-1985-8-30] [REFERRED TO]
PERIYALWAR VS. STATE OF TAMIL NADU [LAWS(MAD)-1999-10-15] [REFERRED TO]
JYOTIBEN RAMLAL PUROHIT VS. STATE OF GUJARAT [LAWS(GJH)-1995-12-14] [REFERRED TO]
STATE OF GUJARAT VS. JAYANTILAL MAGANLAL PATEL [LAWS(GJH)-1995-8-13] [REFERRED TO]
TATA IRON VS. DURGAPUR PROJECT LTD [LAWS(CAL)-2005-8-65] [REFERRED TO]
PETER JAMES GIFRAN VON KALKESTEIN BLEACH VS. STATE OF WEST BENGAL [LAWS(CAL)-2002-9-19] [REFERRED TO]
HARBANS SINGH VS. STATE OF PUNJAB [LAWS(P&H)-1986-11-1] [REFERRED TO]
K. RAJAMANICKAM AND ORS. VS. STATE OF TAMIL NADU, [LAWS(MAD)-1991-1-91] [REFERRED TO]
LALA LALSINGH VS. SETH SHOBHAGCHAND [LAWS(MPH)-1984-10-2] [REFERRED TO]
L. WASIB KHAN VS. STATE [LAWS(MAD)-2022-2-9] [REFERRED TO]
VISHAL KUMAR VS. STATE [LAWS(KER)-2013-3-152] [REFERRED TO]
RAJESH KUMAR VS. GOVT. OF NCT OF DELHI [LAWS(DLH)-2011-12-266] [REFERRED TO]


JUDGEMENT

- (1.)This matter has been placed before the Constitution Bench in rather extraordinary circumstances, as will presently appear. It involves the question as to what is the content of the power conferred on the Governor of a State under Art. 161 of the Constitution; and whether the order of the Governor ;of Bombay dated March 11, 1960, impinges on the judicial powers of this Court, with particular reference to its powers under Art. 142 of the Constitution.
(2.)For the determination of the constitutional issue raised in this case, it is not necessary to go into the merits of the case against the petitioner. It is only necessary to state the following facts in order to appreciate the factual background of the order of the Governor of Bombay aforesaid impugned in this case. The petitioner was Second in Command of I.N.S. Mysore which came to Bombay in the beginning of March 1959. On April 27, 1959, the petitioner was arrested in connection with a charge of murder under S. 302 of the Indian Penal Code. He was produced before the Additional Chief Presidency Magistrate, Greater Bombay, in connection with that charge on April 28, 1959. The Magistrate remanded him to police custody on that day. On the following day (April 29, 1959) the Magistrate received a letter from the Flag Officer, Bombay, to the effect that he was ready and willing to take the accused in naval custody as defined in S. 3 (12) of the Navy Act, 1957, in which custody he would continue to be detained under the orders of the Naval Provost Marshall in exercise of his authority under S. 89 (2) and (3) of the Navy Act. Thereupon the Magistrate made the order directing that the accused should be detained in the Naval Jail and Detention quarters in Bombay. The Magistrate has observed in his order that he had been moved under the instructions of the Government of India. The petitioner continued to remain in naval custody all along. In due course, he was placed on trial before the Sessions Judge, Greater Bombay. The trial was by a jury. The jury returned a verdict of 'not guilty' by a majority of eight to one. The learned Sessions Judge made a reference to the High Court under S. 307 of the Criminal Procedure Code, disagreeing with the verdict of the jury. The reference, being Cr. Ref. No. 159 of 1959, was heard by a Division Bench of the Bombay High Court. The High Court accepted the reference and convicted the petitioner under S. 302 of the Indian Penal Code and sentenced him to imprisonment for life, by its judgment and order dated March 11, 1960. On the same day, the Governor of Bombay passed the following order:-
"In exercise of the powers conferred on me by Article 161 of the Constitution of India, I, Shri Prakasa, Governor of Bombay, am pleased hereby to suspend the sentence passed by the High Court of Bombay on Commander K. M. Nanavati in Sessions Case No. 22 of IVth Sessions of 1959 until the appeal intended to be filed by him in the Supreme Court against his conviction and sentence is disposed of and subject meanwhile to the conditions that he shall be detained in the Naval Jail Custody in I.N.S. Kunjali".

(3.)In pursuance of the judgment of the High Court, a writ issued to the Sessions Judge, Greater Bombay, communicating the order of the High Court convicting and sentencing the petitioner as aforesaid. The Sessions Judge issued a warrant for the arrest of the accused and sent it to the police officer in charge of the City Sessions Court for Greater Bombay for execution. The warrant was returned unserved with the report that the warrant could not be served in view of the order set out above passed by the Governor of Bombay suspending the sentence upon the petitioner. The Sessions Judge then returned the writ together with the unexecuted warrant to the High Court.
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