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ALLAHABAD HIGH COURT Hon’ble Mr. G.P. Mathur, J. Hon’ble Mr. S.K. Jain, J. Criminal Misc. Writ Petition No. 116 of 2001 Decided on 22-1-2001 Sat Paul Passy v. State of Uttar Pradesh S.K. JAIN, J.—The petitioners have come up with the prayers seeking the release of 624 milch cattle (615 milch cows and 9 milch she buffaloes) which were seized from the Railway wagons at Ghaziabad Railway Station on the morning of 29-12-2000 in connection with crime No. 374 of 2000 under section 153A, I.P.C. and under sections 3, 5A and 8 of U.P. Prevention of Cows Slaughter Act, 1955 and also under sections 3 and 11 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act and for staying the arrest of the petitioners in connection with case crime No. 374 of 2000 under section 153A, I.P.C. and under sections 4, 5A and 8 of U.P. Prevention of Cows Slaughter Act, 1955 and also under sections 3 and 11 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act. The facts giving rise to this petition are that the petitioners purchased 631 milch cows and 9 milch she buffaloes, were suckling from different markets and from different farmers from the State of Punjab & Haryana and the same were brought by the petitioners at village Qila Raipur in District Ludhiana (Punjab) for transporting them for sale in West Bengal on 12-12-2000. It is stated that the Government of Punjab has passed an Act known as the Punjab Prohibition of Cows Slaughter Act, 1955 under which certain restrictions have been imposed against the export of cows out of the State. Section 4A of the said Act provides that no person shall export or cause to be exported cow for the purpose of slaughter either directly or through his agent or servant or any other person acting on his behalf in contravention of the provisions of the Act or with the knowledge that it will be or is likely to be slaughtered. Section 4B provides that any person desiring to export cows shall apply for a permit to such officer, as the Government may, by notification, appoint in this behalf, stating the reasons for which they are to be exported as also the number of cows and the name of the State to which they are proposed to be exported and shall also file a declaration to the effect that the cows for which permit for export is required shall not be slaughtered.
As per the Notification/Rules/instructions of the Government of Punjab a noobjection certificate from the concerned District Magistrate is required to be obtained before exporting milch cattle. The petitioners applied to the District Magistrate Ludhiana for issuance of the required licence for transportation of the aforesaid cattle from Qila Raipur, District Ludhiana to Howrah through Railway. It is stated that the petitioners has complied with all formalities and has made compliance of all the relevant Rules before loading the aforesaid cattle in the Railway wagons. The petitioners had obtained no-objection certificate from the District Magistrate Ludhiana for transportation of the said cattle from Qila Raipur, District Ludhiana through Railway and also 39 permits from the veterinary officer, Qila Raipur, District Ludhiana granted on 23-12-2000 and issued to them on 26-12-2000. It is contended that the petitioners having compliance with all formalities and having made compliance of all the Rules applicable in Punjab had loaded the said cattle in the Railway wagons, which were to pass through U.P. It is argued by the learned counsel for the petitioners that the train on way to Howrah from Punjab would have passed through the territory of many States and no enquiry could have been made by any State regarding the validity of transportation of the said cattle as the laws of the concerned State would not be applicable. According to the learned counsel for the petitioners the provisions of U.P. Prevention of Cows Slaughter Act will not apply in the instant case as the origin of the export of the said cattle is from Punjab and since the petitioner has made compliance of all the relevant provisions of law and Rules prevailing in Punjab where the aforesaid cattle were loaded in the Railway wagons, no offence has been committed in U.P. as no provision of U.P. Prevention of Cows Slaughter Act has been violated. Lastly, it has been argued that since the cattle were comfortably placed in adequate number in each wagon of the train the petitioners have not committed breach of any provisions of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act as they have not subjected the cattle to cruelty. That being so they are not liable under the said Act also. In response it has been argued by the learned A.G.A. that the petitioners have committed offences under sections 3 and 11 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act. It is argued that there is violation of Rule 55 provided under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act. Rule 55 of the said Act lays down that an ordinary goods wagon shall carry not more than ten adult cattle or fifteen calves, on broad gauge not more than six adult cattle or ten calves on metro guage and not more than four adult cattle or six calves on narrow guage. Admittedly, the petitioners had loaded 615 cows, 9 she buffaloes and 547 calves in 39 Railway wagons. Thus we find that on an average in one wagon 16 adult cattle and 14 calves were loaded. It has been argued by the learned A.G.A. that the petitioners had heavily and forcibly loaded the said cattle in the wagon far exceeding the prescribed number of cattle which, ought to have been loaded in each wagon in accordance with Rule 55 under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act and therefore it clearly amounts to cruelty within the meaning of sections 3 and 11 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act. While transporting animals by train Railway Administrations are required to observe the conditions laid down in the Transport of Animals Rules, 1978 framed
by the Government of India, Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation in exercise of the powers conferred by clause (h) of sub-section (2) of sections 3 & 8 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960 (59 of 1960). Where the cattle are transported by broad guage the said Rule provides that normally 10 horned cattle, or 15 calves and suckling of horned cattle or 8 adult cattle with suckling will be loaded in a four wheeler wagon. In the instant case we find that the petitioners have loaded the cattle far exceeding the number prescribed by the Rules. There appears to be force in the argument of the learned A.G.A. that the petitioners have forcibly loaded the cattle in the wagons in much higher number than the capacity of each wagon and this act of the petitioners amounts to cruelty to animals. It may be added here that Rule 50 of Rules framed under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act provides that the average space provided per cattle in the Railway wagon or vehicle shall not be less than two square metres. Since a very little space was provided for each cattle in the wagon we have no escape from the conclusion that the said cattle were subjected to cruelty and since the same is a continuing offence the petitioners may be tried in U.P. for the commission of the said offence under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act. It may be further added here that during the transit 7 calves were found dead. Autopsy on two calves was conducted and the post-mortem report shows that the heart of both the calves were found ruptured. This fact further lends support to the argument of learned A.G.A that the cattle were heavily and forcibly loaded in the wagons exceeding the prescribed limit and this act of the petitioners has resulted in cruelty to the said cattle within the meaning of sections 3 and 11 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act. It has been next argued that the petitioners have obtained one no-objection certificate and permits for transportation of 624 cattle only and no permit for transportation of calves and suckling has been obtained. The Railway receipt has also been issued for 624 cattle only and there is no mention of calves or suckling in it. Learned A.G.A has strenuously argued that since the petitioners have concealed the transportation of 547 calves they have not come with clean hand and as such no interference in these proceedings is warranted. We have given our due consideration to the argument and are of the opinion that the petitioners have made concealment regarding the number of cattle to be transported and that being so they have not come with clean hand. Lastly, learned A.G.A. has strongly refuted the petitioners’ contention that they have committed no offence within the territory of U.P. under the provisions of the U.P. Prevention of Cows Slaughter Act and the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act and as such they are not liable for the aforesaid offences and cannot be tried in U.P. As already mentioned above there is evidence that the petitioners have committed offences under sections 3 and 11 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, which is an continuing offence. Also it is to be found that the F.I.R. has been registered under section 153A, I.P.C. in addition to other aforementioned offences. Section 153A, I.P.C. provides as under: “Whoever—
(a) by words either spoken or written, or by signs or by visible representation or otherwise promotes or attempts to promote, on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, caste or community or any other ground whatsoever, disharmony or feelings of enmity, hatred or ill-will between different religious, social, language or regional groups or castes or communities, or (b) commits any act which is prejudicial to the maintenance of harmony between different religious, social, language or regional groups or castes or communities and which disturbs or is likely to disturb the public tranquillity, or (c) .....................................” In the instant case we find that a huge consignment of 624 cattle (615 milch cows and 9 milch she buffaloes) along with 547 suckling was seized at Railway Station Ghaziabad. The said consignment was destined to go to West Bengal where there is no ban on cow slaughtering. In our opinion, the applicability of section 153A, I.P.C. in the instant case cannot be ruled out. The F.I.R. discloses the commission of cognizable offence. In view of this matter, we find that no case for staying the arrest of the accused has been made out. In view of the facts and circumstances discussed above, we are of the opinion that this case does not warrant any interference in exercise of jurisdiction under Article 226 of the Constitution of India for either, quashing the F.I.R. or investigation of the case. The petitioners have made a prayer for the release of seized cattle in their favour. Chapter XXXIV of the Code of Criminal Procedures provides for disposal of property. In our opinion the petitioners may be well advised to move an application for release of the said cattle before the concerned Magistrate. Since the petitioners have an alternative remedy under the provisions of Cr. P.C. we are not inclined to entertain a writ petition under Article 226 of the Constitution for the said purpose. In the result we reach the conclusion that this petition has no force and deserves to be dismissed. The petition is dismissed. However, there shall be no order as to costs.