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ASGHAR ALI versus STATE OF U.P. & OTHERS

High Court of Judicature at Allahabad

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Asghar Ali v. State Of U.P. & Others - WRIT - C No. 14706 of 2003 [2005] RD-AH 415 (15 February 2005)

 

This is an UNCERTIFIED copy for information/reference. For authentic copy please refer to certified copy only. In case of any mistake, please bring it to the notice of Joint Registrar(Copying).

HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE OF ALLAHABAD

Hon'ble Mr. Rakesh Tiwari, J.

  The petitioner is Managing Director of Govardhan Transformer Udyog Pvt. Ltd., Reethra Tahsil, Shikohabad and Goverdhan Electrical Ltd., Industrial Area, Bhind.  He is also owner of a cold Storage. He is a prominent businessman.  

The case of the petitioner is that Govardhan Transformer Udyog Pvt. Ltd. is situated in a lonely and forlorn place in Reethra Tahsil, Shikohabad.  The area where the pertioner's factory is situated is at a considerable distance from Kotwai Shikohabad and is dacoit affected area. A dacoity was committed in the house of Rajesh Kapoor, partner of the petitioner. In the incident, he sustained bullet injuries.  

Counsel for the petitioner submits that the action of cancelling of licence of firearm and the orders passed by the District Magistrate and the Commissioner are malicious and for ulterior motives.  According to the petitioner, the motive is that one Ram Asrey, cousin brother of the then Assistant Commissioner Trade Tax- Sri Abhay Raj Singh was an employee in the petitioner's factory.  Being related to the Assistant Commissioner, Trade Tax, he was unrestrained and autocratic. Sri Ram Asrey was initially advised and later on warned not to indulge in activities disrupting the smooth functioning of the administration otherwise stern disciplinary action would be taken against him. Thereafter, Sri Ram Ashrey left the service.  

        It is alleged that Sri Abhay Raj Singh was infuriated and he  threatened the petitioner with dire consequences. He also lodged an F.I.R in Police Station North, Firozabad on 10.4.1997 alleging that he was assaulted by the petitioner at Bus Stand at Shikohabad on 10.4.1997. Case crime no. 177 of 1997 was registered against the petitioner at Police Station Shikohabad in which final report in favour of the petitioner was submitted by the local Police on 27.5.1997, which is as under :-

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Okknh Jh vHk;jkt flag mijksDr usa Fkkuk mRrj in fn0 10&4&97 dks [kqqn ds lkFk vk;s c`ts'k feJk vkfn mijksDr ds Onkjk jksMost cl LVSM ij ekjihV djus o tku ls ekjus dh /kedh dh fjiksVZ fy[kk;h A ,QvkbZvkj Fkkuk f'kdksgkckn vkdj fof/kor e> ,lvkbZ viBuh; dks lqiqnZ dh xbZ LFky oknh fujh{k.k ?kVuk LFky o rQrh'k rekeh ls dksbZ lcwr ckn dks U;k;ky; Hkstus ds fy, miyC/k ugha gS u tqeZ dk gksuk lkfcr gS A vr% foospuk ds Onkjk ,iQvkj lekIr fd;k tk jgk gS Lohdkj djusa dh d`ik djsa A"

 A further investigation was ordered by the Magistrate which was again conducted by Sri R.S. Yadav, Sub Inspector of Kotwali Shkohabad. He also found that the incident of 10.4.1997 was false and fabricated and submitted his report which is appended as Annexure 6 to the writ petition. It is submitted that for aforesaid personal reasons, the court below has cancelled the licence which has been upheld by the Commissioner in appeal, though there was no basis for the order as the licence had been granted after final report had been submitted after investigation and reinvestigation. It is submitted that there was no allegation in the F.I.R registered at Police Station Shikohabad in Crime Case No. 177 of 1997 that the petitioner was accused of being armed with any firearm or that any firearm was used; that Sri Abhay Raj had not received any injury on his person in the alleged mar peet; there is neither evidence of any person nor any piece of evidence except mere inimical statement of Abhay Raj Singh. He submits that such statement cannot be relied upon in view of decision in S.CShekhar Vs. State 1999 A.L.J-258.

The industry of the petitioner is in an isolated area. Due to incident of dacoity in which his parter received bullet injuries, the petitioner apprehended danger to his life and property. He applied for grant of licence on 6.11.1997. After obtaining requisite reports, the licence was granted to the petitioner on 6.11.1997 and the petitioner thereafter purchased a revolver on 19.12.1997. It is the allegation of the petitioner that in connivance with aforesaid Sri Abhay Raj Singh, District Magistrate Firozabad- respondent no. 2 issued a show cause notice on 3.1.1998( wrongly shown as 3.1.1997) to the petitioner alleging that the petitioner is a person of criminal propensities and gives shelter to the criminals by misusing his firearm.  The petitioner submitted his reply dated 15.1.1998 to the show cause notice and the local police also submitted its report in favour of the petitioner on 27.1.1998.  Without considering the final reports submitted by the local Police, the District Magistrate, Firozabad- respondent no. 2 passed the impugned order dated 20.1.1999 cancelling the licence of the petitioner.  Appeal preferred by the petitioner before the Commissioner, Agra Division, Agra, has also been rejected on 12.2.2002.

Having heard counsel for the petitioner and Standing Counsel, I have also perused the record. A bare perusal of the impugned orders reveal that the authorities below have cancelled the licence of the petitioner merely because of an alleged incident of Mar Peet with Sri Abhay Raj Singh, the then Assistant Commissioner, Trade Tax.  The case was duly investigated and reinvestigated and it was found by the local Police that no such incident had actually occurred. For the reasons best known to the authorities below, final reports of the local Police have been conveniently ignored in which it has come out that the incident dated 10.4.1997 reported against the pettioner by Abhay Raj Singh was false  and fabricated. On the contrary, there is report in favour of the petitioner recommending grant of licence as he was stated to be a law abiding person.  The impugned orders smacks of malice and foul play. The apprehension of the petitioner about danger to his life and property cannot be taken lightly as he is a prominent businessman and an incident of dacoity has already taken place in his business partner's house.     The impugned orders clearly show that the authorities below have not applied their judicious mind and have passed the impugned orders against the petitioner without any basis or cogent reason.

For the aforesaid reasons the impugned orders cannot be sustained in the eye of law. Moreover, it is apparent from a perusal of record that the petitioner is not a criminal and no criminal case is pending in any court of law against him.  On the other hand, he is a respectable businessman and for protection of his life and property, he has every right to keep firearm for self defence.

There was no basis for cancellation of the arm licence as the two final reports in the alleged incident of 10.4.1997 had been submitted on 27.5.1997 and 26.10.1997 after investigation by the different investigating authorities. The petitioner had admittedly purchased the revolver on 19.12.1997 after police had submitted report of antecedents in his favour recommending grant of licence to him.

In the result, the writ petition succeeds and is allowed.  The impugned orders dated 12.2.2002 passed by respondent no. 1, Annexure 1 to the writ petition and dated 20.1.1999 passed by respondent no. 2, Annexure 2 to the writ petition are hereby quashed.  If the petitioner applies for renewal of licence, the same may be considered and decided in accordance with law. No order as to costs.

dated 15.2.2005

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Reproduced in accordance with s52(q) of the Copyright Act 1957 (India) from judis.nic.in, indiacode.nic.in and other Indian High Court Websites

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