(1.)At all material times the petnr. who is the applt. before us, was the Secretary of People's Publishing House, Ltd., and company incorporated under the Companies Act with its registered office at 195-B Khetwadi Main Road in Bombay. In sep, 1949 a pamphlet entitled "Railway Mazdooron ke khilaf Nai Zazish" is alleged to have been published in Bombay by the petnr. as the secretary of that Co. Learned counsel for the petnr, states that the pamphlet was published as a "book" within the meaning of S. 1, Press and Registration of Books Act (XXV  of 1867) and that the provisions of that Act had been duly complied with. The Bombay Govt. authorities, however, took the view that the pamphlet was a "news sheet" within the meaning of S. 2 (6), Press (Emergency Powers) Act, 1931, and that as it had been published without the authority required by S.15 (1) of that Act, the petnr. had committed an offence punishable under S.18 (1) of the same Act. A prosecution under that Act was accordingly started against the petnr, in the Ct. of the Chief Presidency Mag. Bombay, and was registered as case No, 1102/P of 1949. During the pendency of the proceedings the Constitution of India came into force on 26-1-1950. On 3-3-1950 the petnr. filed a written statement submitting, inter alia, that the definition of "news sheet" is given in S. 2 (6) Press (Emergency Powers) Act, 1931 and Ss.15 and 18 thereof were ultra vires and void in view of Art. 19 (1) (a) read with Art. 13 and that the hearing of the case should be stayed till the H. C, decided that question of law. This was followed up by a petn filed in the H. C. on 7-3-1950 under Art. 228 of the Constitution, praying that the record of the case No. 1102/P of 1949 be sent for, that it be declared that Ss, 15 and 18 read with S. 2 (6) and (10), in so far as they create liability for restrictive measure for a citizen are ultra vires of Art. l9 (1) (a) and are, therefore, void and inoperative and that the petnr, be ordered to be acquitted. During the pendency of this petn. the Chief Presidency Mag, on 23-3-1950 framed a charge against the petnr. under S.18, Press (Emergency Powers) Act, 1931.
(2.)The petn. under Art. 228 was heard on 12-4-1950 by a Bench of the Bombay H. C.
consisting of Chagla C. J. and Bavdekar and Shah JJ. Two questions were raised before the Bench, namely : (1) Whether ss. 15 (1) and 18 (1) read with the definitions contained in Ss. 2 (6) and S (10), Press (Emergency Powers) Act, 1931 were inconsistent with Art. 19 (1) (a) read with cl. (2) of that article and (2) Assuming that they were inconsistent, whether the proceedings commenced under S. 18 (1) of that Act before the commencement of the Constitution could nevertheless be proceeded with
(3.)The H. C. considered it unnecessary to deal with or decide the first question and disposed of the appln. only on the second question. The H. C. took the view that the word "void" was used in Art. 13 (1) in the sense of "repealed" and that consequently it attracted S. 6, General Clauses Act, which Act by Art. 367 was made applicable for the interpretation of the Constitution. The H. C., therefore, reached the conclusion that proceedings under the Press (Emergency Powers) Act, 1931, which were pending at the date of the commencement of the Constitution were not affected, even if the Act were inconsistent with the fundamental rights conferred by Art.19 (1) (a) and as such became void under Art 13 (1) of the Constitution after 26-1-1950. The H. C. accordingly answered the second question in the affirmative and dismissed the petnr's appln. The petnr. has now come up on appeal before us on the strength of certificate granted by the H. 0. under Art. 132 (1) of the Constitution.