High Court of Punjab and Haryana, Chandigarh
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State of Haryana v. Purshotam - CRM-29-1992  RD-P&H 2906 (5 May 2006)
Criminal Revision No.29 of 1992.
Date of decision : 10.5.2006.
State of Haryana vs Purshotam
Coram: Hon'ble Ms. Justice Kiran Anand Lall.
Present: Mr.Jitendra Chauhan,Senior Deputy Advocate General, Haryana.
None for the respondent.
Kiran Anand Lall,J.
On 4.12.1990, Shri Lala Ram Yadav, D.S.P., along with Shri Ram Parkash, Inspector Food & Supplies, raided the ration-depot of the respondent, located in Ward No.8, Safidon Gate, Jind, and on checking, the raiding party found that there was shortage of 2 quintals, 46 kgs, and 120 grams in sugar-stock. The stock available was 1 quintal, whereas as per records, it should have been 3 quintals 46 kgs and 120 grams. Accordingly, stock register Ex.P1 and sale registers Exs.P2 and P3 were taken into possession vide memo, Ex.PH, and, thereafter, report about the shortage of stock was sent to the Haryana Government. On receipt of the required advice from the concerned department, the DSP filed complaint, Ex.PA, in court, against the respondent, on 8.12.1990.
Since the respondent pleaded not guilty to the notice of allegations given to him by the court, for showing cause as to why he should not be punished under Section 7 of the Essential Commodities Act, for having violated the Haryana Prevention of Hoarding and Maintenance of Quality Control Order, 1977, prosecution led evidence in the form of the Criminal Revision No.29 of 1992. (2)
testimony of nine witnesses viz. PW1 Angrej Singh, Inspector CID, Chandigarh, PW2 ASI Om Parkash, PW3 Ram Chander, Store Keeper, CONFED Office, Jind, PW4 Constable Prem Kumar, PW5 DSP Lala Ram Yadav, PW6 ASI Bhim Singh, PW7 Ram Parkash, Inspector Food & Supplies, PW8 Mohan Lal, and PW9 SI Surjit Singh.
In his statement recorded under Section 313 Cr.P.C., after the close of prosecution evidence, the respondent, inter-alia, pleaded that the stock of sugar, which was found short, had, infact, been sold to several ration card holders but entries with regard thereto could not be made, due to rush of work.
DW1 Raj Kumar was examined in defence.
On conclusion of trial, the trial court convicted the respondent under Section 7 of the Essential Commodities Act and released him on probation for a period of one year, with supervision, on his furnishing a bond of good behaviour, in the sum of Rs.5000/-, with one surety in the like amount, besides ordering him to pay a sum of Rs.1000/-, as cost of proceedings.
The State of Haryana having not felt satisfied with the release of the respondent, on probation, it came up in appeal, to this court.
Today, when the appeal was taken up for hearing, none appeared on behalf of the respondent.
According to the learned Senior Deputy Advocate General, the trial court had taken a very lenient view of the matter by releasing the respondent on probation, and as such, he pleaded, this court may impose sentence of imprisonment on him.
Criminal Revision No.29 of 1992. (3)
The case pertains to the year 1990. The respondent has been in the corridors of courts, for the last more than 15 years. This, by itself, is a sufficient punishment for him, and it would not be fair and just to send him to jail, after such a long time. Otherwise also,as mentioned in the order of the learned trial court, he is a first offender and was of young age at the relevant time. The trial court appears to have taken into consideration all these facts, while refraining itself from sending him to Jail and instead, ordering his release on probation so that he gets a chance to mend himself.
Now, after expiry of more than 15 years, I do not find any ground to differ with the view taken by the trial court.
The appeal, thus, lacks merit, and is, accordingly, dismissed.
10.5.2006. (Kiran Anand Lall)
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