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Nand Lal Gupta v. State Of U.P. And Another - APPLICATION U/s 482 No. 14116 of 2005 [2005] RD-AH 5317 (8 November 2005)


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Court No. 54

Criminal Misc. Application No. 14116 of 2005.

Nand Lal Gupta Vs. State of U.P. and another.

Hon. Mrs. Poonam Srivastava, J.

Heard Smt. Mridul Tripathi, learned counsel for the applicant and learned A.G.A for the State.

The order dated 12.8.2005 passed by Chief Judicial Magistrate, Deoria has been challenged in this application, whereby the application for release of food grains recovered from the possession of the applicant  has been refused. The applicant is trader and miller and he has two godowns. The Trade Tax Department has complete information regarding two godowns. Annexure-1 is a photocopy of the intimation form sent by the applicant to the trade tax department. The applicant is registered under the Trade Tax Act in the name of Sri Sahu Traders. A copy of the registration certificate is annexed as Annexure-2 to the affidavit. A license has also been granted in favour of the applicant for wholesale trading. The license issued by the Mandi Samiti is annexed as Annexure-3. The Sub Divisional Magistrate, Deoria raided the godown of the applicant on 30.6.2005 in presence of Lekhpal, Supply Inspector, Naib Tehsildar and Tehsildar, Deoria. The goods were recovered which is sought to be released. A copy of the recovery memo has been annexed as Annexure-4. A first information report has been registered under Section 3/7 E.C. Act. The applicant approached the District Magistrate, Deoria on the date when the first information report was lodged for a proper inquiry. The godowns were reopened on 10.8.2005. A copy of the supplementary recovery memo is annexed as Annexure-7. The proceeding under Section 6-A Essential Commodities Act is continuing on the basis of notice issued on 27.7.2005.

The main allegation against the applicant is that rice dealers and millers were required to make available 60% of the rice to the Government towards levy and remaining 40% can be retained to be sold in the open market. However, since the proceedings are continuing on the basis of first information report, no fruitful purpose will be served to comment on the merits of the case. The impugned order is annexed as Annexure-9 whereby the rice weighting 630.33 Quintal has not been released on the ground that since the confiscation under the Essential Commodities Act is continuing, therefore, the rice can not be released in favour of the applicant.

The submission on behalf of the applicant is that he is prepared to furnish security in lieu of the food grains for the reason that the food grains are perishable item and no safety measures have been taken to store the seized food grains to avoid damage of the goods. The applicant has unequivocally given an undertaking that in the event, the goods (630.33 quintals rice) is released subject to deposit of cost towards security so that no loss may be caused to either the applicant or the Government. The Apex Court in the case of Sunderbhai Ambalal Desai Vs. State of Gujarat, A.I.R. 2003, Supreme Court, 638, has ruled that the power under Section 451 Cr.P.C. should be exercised expeditiously and judiciously so that it would serve fruitful purpose. It is correct that if no appropriate measure is taken for safety of the rice seized, the chances of damage of the goods is very likely and in the circumstances, great loss would be caused.

In view of the principle laid down by the Apex Court in the case of Sunderbhai Ambalal Desai (Supra), the Chief Judicial Magistrate, Deoria is directed to release the 630.33 quintals rice in favour of the applicant subject to deposit of the entire cost of the articles, which shall be kept in custody of the court and in the event, the proceedings end in favour of the applicant, the same can be returned to him. However, in the event, the court below comes to a conclusion that the confiscation is to be made, then amount deposited by the applicant will be dealt in the manner provided by the Code taking into consideration all the facts and circumstances necessary at the relevant time.

With these observations, this application is finally disposed of.




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