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C.USMAN, AGED 42 YEARS, S/O.SOOPY v. FOREST RANGE OFFICER - Crl MC No. 1233 of 2007  RD-KL 9447 (5 June 2007)
IN THE HIGH COURT OF KERALA AT ERNAKULAMCrl MC No. 1233 of 2007()
1. C.USMAN, AGED 42 YEARS, S/O.SOOPY,
1. FOREST RANGE OFFICER,
2. STATE OF KERALA REP.BY
For Petitioner :SRI.M.VIJAYAKUMAR
For Respondent :PUBLIC PROSECUTOR
The Hon'ble MR. Justice R.BASANT
O R D E R
R.BASANT, J.Crl.M.C.No.1233 of 2007
Dated this the 5th day of June 2007
O R D E RThe petitioner is an accused, who faces allegations under Section 27(1)(d) of the Kerala Forest Act. Bark of certain trees were seized by the Mananthavady police and the same were handed over to the forest officials. The petitioner applied for release of the bark so seized. The learned Magistrate directed release of the bark to the petitioner subject to certain conditions. Revision petition was filed before the learned Sessions Judge and the learned Sessions Judge, by the impugned order, set aside the order of the learned Magistrate and directed that the property be sold in public auction. It was stipulated that the petitioner can also take part in the auction. The sale proceeds was directed to be deposited before the learned Magistrate.
2. This Criminal Miscellaneous Case was filed on 16/4/2007. When it came up for hearing on 17/4/2007, the learned Public Prosecutor was directed to take instructions and the matter was posted to 24/4/2007. On that day, this Criminal Miscellaneous Case was admitted and interim stay was granted by this court.
3. By the time the order of interim stay was communicated on 24/4/2007, the bark had already been sold in public auction. Crl.M.C.No.1233/07 2 Proceeds have been deposited before the learned Magistrate also, submits the learned Public Prosecutor. In these circumstances, the learned Public Prosecutor submits that this Criminal Miscellaneous Case has now become unnecessary and infructuous.
4. The learned counsel for the petitioner submits that there has been deliberate violation of the order of this court. The Public Prosecutor in charge knew of the proceedings on 17/4/2007 and he was directed to take instructions and be ready on 24/4/2007. On 24/4/2007, the Criminal Miscellaneous Case was admitted and interim stay was granted. The official concerned must have known that instructions were given in the matter and should not have proceeded to dispose of the bark in public auction on 24/4/2007 itself without waiting for the orders of this court. The conduct of the official concerned amounts to contempt, it is urged.
5. I do not find merit in this contention. On 17/4/2007 obviously the learned Judge who admitted the Criminal Miscellaneous Case had not granted any interim order nor was the Criminal Miscellaneous Case admitted. By the time, the Criminal Miscellaneous Case was admitted and interim stay granted, the auction had already taken place. There was no impediment against the conduct of the auction on 24/4/2007 though, of course, it would Crl.M.C.No.1233/07 3 appear the forest officials could have waited for the outcome of the proceedings on 24/4/2007. Be that as it may, I am not persuaded to agree that any action in contempt can be taken against the officials concerned. That prayer cannot be accepted.
6. Coming to the main relief claimed in the petition, I agree with the learned Public Prosecutor that the proceedings have become infructuous and unnecessary. The bark in question have already been disposed of in terms of the order passed by the learned Sessions Judge.
7. Nothing survives for consideration. This Criminal Miscellaneous Case is, in these circumstances, dismissed.
(R.BASANT, JUDGE)jsr // True Copy// PA to Judge Crl.M.C.No.1233/07 4 Crl.M.C.No.1233/07 5
ORDER21ST DAY OF MAY2007
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