Decided on March 01,2013

Commissioner Garhwal Mandal Respondents


KALYAN JYOTI SENGUPTA, J. - (1.) BY this writ petition two orders revoking licence for holding arms have been challenged. One order was passed by the first authority and the second one by the appellate authority.
(2.) IT is submitted by the learned counsel for the petitioner that order revoking licence is illegal, as the precondition for revocation licence has mentioned in Section 17 (3) of the Arms Act are not fulfilled as there has not been fact finding which has sine qua non recorded. He further submits that revocation has taken place because of the pendency of the criminal case. However, he fairly admits that his client had carried revolver while he participated in the marriage ceremony and during the marriage ceremony accidently there has been automatic opening of fire as a result of which two persons were injured. According to him, pendency of this criminal case prompted the authority concerned to revoke licence. The judicial pronouncement does not support this kind of ground for revocation. It has been held by the Allahabad High Court in the case of Satish Singh Vs District Magistrate, Sultanpur & others reported in 2010(8) ACC 1994.
(3.) LEARNED counsel for the respondents has relied on the reasoning of the appellate authority and submits that the pendency of the criminal case is not the ground of revocation of the licence. It has been held and decided that the security of public peace and the public safety and also for other reasons the revocation was required. This case according to him comes within the category of Clause (a) and Clause (b) of Sub Section (3) of Section 17 of the Arms Act. When the authority concerned has come to a fact finding, based on the admitted fact, this Court, on such fact finding, will not substitute its own reasoning and fact finding to upset the impugned order. I have considered the respective arguments of the learned counsel for the parties. Before I discuss the matter, I set out the power of licencing authority under Section 17 (3)(b) of the Arms Act. Section 17 (3) (b) of the Arms Act reads as under: - "17. Variation, suspension and revocation of licences. - (1) "¦"¦"¦.. (2) "¦"¦"¦.. (3) The licensing authority may by order in writing suspend a licence for such period as it thinks fit or revoke a licence, - - (a) "¦"¦"¦. (b) if the licensing authority deems it necessary for the security of the public peace or for public safety to suspend or revoke the licence; or (c) "¦"¦"¦. (d) "¦"¦ (e) "¦"¦" I agree with the submission of the learned counsel for the petitioner that precondition mentioned in Section 17 of the Arms Act has to be fulfilled before any order of revocation is passed, meaning thereby, the authority concerned must come to a fact finding of the conditions mentioned in the said Section exist. It appears from the Single Bench decision of the Allahabad High Court, cited by the learned counsel for the petitioner, ruled amongst other that pendency of criminal case per se is not ground for revocation of licence. In the context of the aforesaid legal position, I examine the fact finding of both the authorities. It appears that the licencing authority order does not carry the detailed reason and finding. However, the operative portion of the appellate authority reads as under: - ...[VERNACULAR TEXT COMITTED]...;

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