Allahabad High Court Judgement

Allahabad High Court Judgement

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JUDGEMENT HEADLINE : Transporting And Carrying The Cow Or Bullocks For Slaughtering Within The State Is No Offence.
JUDGEMENT TITLE : Asfaq Ahmad And Another Vs. State Of U.P. And Another On 07/11/2008 By Allahabad High Court
CASE NO : CRIMINAL REVISION NO. 141 OF 2005
CORAM : Hon'ble Vijay Kumar Verma,J

HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE AT ALLAHABAD

AFR
Reserved


Criminal Revision No. 141 Of 2005

1.Asfaq Ahmad ]
2.Aftab Ahmad ]sons Of Mohd Sami.....Revisionists

Vs.

1.State Of U.P.& Another.............Opposite Parties


********************

Hon'ble Vijay Kumar Verma, J.

"Whether Transporting Or Carrying The Cow, Bull Or Bulock Within The State With The Intention Of Slaughtering Constitutes Any Offence Under The Uttar Pradesh Prevention Of Cow Slaughter Act 1955 (in Short 'the Cow Slaughter Act')", Is The Cardinal Question That Falls For Consideration In This Revision, By Means Of Which The Order Dated 07.01.2005 Passed By The Judicial Magistrate Court No. 1, Allahabad In Crl. Misc. Application No. 345/12 Of 2005 (State Vs. Suffiyan & Others), Has Been Challenged, Whereby The Learned Magistrate Has Declined To Release Truck No. U.P. 70-S/8631 In Favour Of The Revisionists.
2. The Facts Emerging From The Record Leading To The Filing Of This Revision Are That An FIR Was Lodged By S.I. Atul Kumar Singh On 29.12.2004 At P.S. Nawabganj (Allahabad), Where A Case Under Section 3/8 Cow Slaughter Act And Section 11 Prevention Of Cruelty To Animals Act(in Short 'the Animals' Cruelty Act') Was Registered At Crime No. 777 Of 2004 Against (1) Sufiyan S/o Mujjan (2) Atiq S/o Babu And (3) Bachau S/o Isahaq. Shorn Of Unnecessary Details, The Allegations Made In The FIR, In Brief, Are That On Getting Information From An Informer, S.I. Atul Kumar Singh With The Help Of Other Police Personnel Arrested The Accused Sufiyan On 29.12.2004 At About 5.15 P.m. Near Ram Janaki Temple Situated Within The Limits Of Village Samai Nawabganj District Allahabad. He Was Driving Truck No. U.P.70-S/8631 In Which 19 Bullocks And One Cow Were Loaded. Two Persons Namely Atiq S/o Babu And Bachau S/o Ishak Were Also Arrested, Who Were Standing In The Truck Catching The Animals. The Truck And Animals Were Seized By The Police And Brought To P.S. Nawabganj, Where Aforesaid Case Was Registered Against The Above Named Accused. The Revisionists Asfaq Ahmad And Aftab Ahmad Both Sons Of Mohammad Sami Residents Of Village Mazid Nagar Glass Factory, P.S. Duhmanganj, Allahabad, Who Are The Registered Owners Of Aforesaid Truck, Moved An Application To Release Truck In Their Favour. That Application Has Been Rejected By The Court Below Vide Impugned Order. Hence This Revision.
3. When The Case Was Taken Up In The Revised List, The Counsel For The Revisionists Did Not Come. Hence I Have Heard Arguments Of Learned AGA For The State. The Revision Is Being Decided On Merit After Going Through The Record.
4. It Was Contended By The Learned AGA That One Cow And 19 Bullocks Were Being Transported To Bihar By The Accused Suffiyan, Atiq And Bachau In Truck No. U.P. 70-S/8631 For The Purpose Of Slaughtering And Hence The Court Below Did Not Commit Any Illegality In Declining To Release The Truck In Favour Of The Revisionists, As The Said Truck Was Being Used For Illegal Smuggling Of Cow And Bullocks Out Side The State For The Purpose Of Slaughtering.
5. Having Given My Best Of Consideration To The Submissions Made By The Learned AGA, I Find No Force In The Aforesaid Contention. Counter Affidavit Has Been Filed By The Investigating Officer S.I. Saryu Prasad Singh, But No Paper Has Been Filed To Show That The Animals Which Were Loaded In Truck No. U.P. 70-S/8631 Were Being Transported To Bihar. No Goods Receipt Was Found On The Accused Persons Or In The Truck To Indicate That The Animals Were Booked For Bihar. The Truck And Cow/bullocks Were Seized In District Allahabad Which Is Situated At A Far Distance From The Border Of Bihar State. Therefore, Merely On The Basis Of Alleged Confession Of The Accused Before The Police, It Can Not Be Inferred That The Seized Animals Were Being Transported To Bihar. Admittedly No Animal Was Found Dead Or Maimed In The Truck. Any Injury Sufficient In The Ordinary Course Of Nature To Cause Death Was Also Not Inflicted To Any Animal. Keeping These Facts In View, Let Us Now Examine Whether Any Offence Under Cow Slaughter Act Is Made Out In This Case.
6. The Uttar Pradesh Prevention Of Cow Slaughter Act Was Enacted To Prohibit And Prevent The Slaughter Of Cow And Its Progeny In Uttar Pradesh. Slaughter Has Been Defined In Section 2 (d) Which Reads Thus:-
"Slaughter' Means Killing By Any Method Whatsoever And Includes Maiming And Inflicting Of Physical Injury Which In The Ordinary Course Will Cause Death."

7. Section 3 Of Cow Slaughter Act Lays Down That "no Person Shall Slaughter Or Cause To Be Slaughtered, Or Offer Or Cause To Be Offered For Slaughter, A Cow, Bull Or Bullock In Any Place In Uttar Pradesh, Anything Contained In Any Other Law For The Time Being In Force Or Any Usage Or Custom, To The Contrary Notwithstanding."
8. Section 5-A Of Cow Sluaghter Act Is Mainly Relevant For The Present Case. Sub Section (1) Of Section 5-A Reads As Under:-
5-A Regulation On Transport Of Cow Etc-(1)
"No Person Shall Transport Or Offer For Transport Or Cause To Be Transported Any Cow, Or Bull Or Bullock, The Slaughter Whereof In Any Place In Uttar Pradesh Is Punishable Under This Act, From Any Place Within The State To Any Place Outside The State, Except Under A Permit Issued By An Officer Authorised By The State Government In This Behalf By Notified Order And Except In Accordance With The Terms And Conditions Of Such Permit."

9. The Contravention Of Section 3, 5 & 5-A Of Cow Slaughter Act Is Punishable Under Section 8 Which Reads Thus:-
"(1) Whoever Contravenes Or Abets The Contravention Of The Provisions Of Section3, Section 5 Or Section 5-A Shall Be Punished Imprisonment For A Term Which May Extend To Seven Years Which May Extend To Ten Thousand Rupees.
(2) Whoever Attempts To Commit An Offence Punishable Under Sub Section (1) Shall Be Punished With Imprisonment For A Term Which May Extend To One-half Of The Longest Term Of Imprisonment Provided For That Offence And With Such Fine As Is Provided For The Offence."

10. As Would Appear From Section 5-A-(1) Of Cow Slaughter Act, Transportation Of Any Cow, Bull Or Bullock Without Requisite Permit From Any Place Within The State Of Uttar Pradesh To Any Place Outside The State Is Prohibited, Contravention Of Which Is Punishable Under Section 8. It Means That Transportation Of Any Cow, Bull Or Bullock Within The State Of Uttar Pradesh Is Not Prohibited And No Offence Would Be Made Out By Mere Transportation Of Cow, Bull Or Bullock Or Carrying Them On Foot From One Place To Another Place Within The State Of Uttar Pradesh. However, While Transporting Or Carrying These Animals Within The State Of Uttar Pradesh, If Any Animal Is Killed Or Maimed Or Such Physical Injury Is Inflicted Which In The Ordinary Course Will Cause Death, Then Such Acts Would Be Deemed 'slaughtering' Within The Meaning Of Section 2 (d) Of Cow Slaughter Act, Which Is Punishable Under Section 8 Of This Act, Being The Contravention Of Section 3. If At The Time Of Transporting Or Carrying These Animals, Any Of Them Is Offered For Slaughtering To Any Person, Then Also Such Act Would Be Punishable Under Section 8, Being The Contravention Of Section 3. Attempt To Commit The Offences Under Cow Slaughter Act Is Also Punishable Under Section 8 (2) Of This Act. If Neither Any Attempt For Slaughtering The Cow, Bull Or Bullock Is Made, Nor These Animals Are Offered To Any Person For Slaughtering And If All The Animals Are Healthy And No Injury Is Caused To Them During Transportation Or Carrying Them On Foot, Then No Offence Under Cow Slaughter Act Would Be Made Out, Even If These Animals Are Being Transported With The Intention Of Slaughtering, Because Intention Of Any Offence Is Not Punishable Under Any Law For The Time Being In Force.
11. It Is Well Known That There Are Four Stages Of An Offence. These Are (1) Intention (2) Preparation (3) Attempt And (4) Commission. As I Have Mentioned Above, Intention Of Any Offence Is Not Punishable Under Any Law. The Preparation Of Slaughtering The Cow, Bull Or Bullock Is Also Not Punishable Under Cow Slaughter Act Or Any Other Law For The Time Being In Force. The Act Of Transporting The Cow, Bull Or Bullock Or Carrying Them On Foot Within The State Of Uttar Pradesh Would Not Travel Beyond The Stage Of Preparation Of Slaughtering, Even If These Animals Are Being Transported Or Carried For The Purpose Of Slaughtering. There Is Vast Difference In The Stages Of 'preparation' And 'attempt'. Mere Transportation Of Cow, Bull Or Bullock Within The State Of Uttar Pradesh Can Not Amount To 'attempt' Of Slaughtering And This Act At The Most Can Be Said To The Preparation Of Slaughtering, Which Is Not Punishable Under Cow Slaughter Act Or Any Other Law For The Time Being In Force. Reference In This Regard May Be Made To The Case Of Babu Vs. State Of U.P. 1991 (supal) ACC 110. In That Case Also Bullocks Were Being Transported In Trucks Which Were Seized At Bihar Border. FIR Was Lodged Under Section 5 & 8 Of Cow Slaughter Act And Section 11 Of Animals' Cruelty Act. It Is Held By The Allahabad High Court That Uttar Pradesh Prevention Of Cow Slaughter Act Prohibits Slaughter Of Cow Or Bullocks And Possession Of Beef, But There Is Nothing In The Act Prohibiting Preparation For Cow Slaughtering. It Is Further Observed That It Should Not Be Forgotten That Transport Of The Bullocks Could Only Be An Insolate Offence Not Punishable Under The Prevention Of Cow Slaughter Act. It Is Also Held That There Can Not Be Reasonable Presumption Or Inference That The Bullocks Were Being Transported For Slaughtering.
12. The Offence Of 'abatement' Of Slaughtering Would Also Not Be Made In Present Case, As The Accused Persons Were Neither Offering The Cow Or Bullocks To Any Other Person For Slaughtering, Nor They Were Providing Any Kind Of Aid To Any Person For The Offence Of Slaughtering. Mere Transporting The Cow, Bull Or Bullock Or Carrying Them On Foot Can Not Be Said To The 'abatement' Of Any Offence Under Cow Slaughter Act, Unless These Animals Are Offered To Any Other Person For Slaughtering And Any Other Kind Of Aid Is Provided To Any Person For The Offence Of Slaughtering.
13. In View Of The Forgoing Discussion And Having Regard To The Observations Made By This Court In Babu Singh Vs. State Of U.P. (supra), In The Present Case Also, No Offence Under Cow Slaughter Act Would Be Made Out, Because All The Animals Were Healthy And Alive And No Injury Was Caused To Any Of Them. There Is Nothing On Record To Show That The Bullocks Or Cow Were Being Offered To Any Person For Slaughtering. No Bullock Or Cow In The Truck Was Found Killed Or Maimed. There Is Nothing In The FIR Or Counter Affidavit To Show That The Accused Persons Had Made Any Attempt To Slaughter Any Bullock Or Cow. Thus, There Was No Contravention Of Section 3 Or Section 5-A Of Cow Slaughter Act In Present Case And Hence No Offence Punishable Under Section 8 Of This Act Would Be Made Out. Therefore, There Was No Justification For The Court Below To Decline To Release The Truck In Favour Of The Revisionists, Who Are The Registered Owners Of This Vehicle, As Is Evident From The Copy Of Registration Certificate (annexure 2).
14. It Is Often Seen Now-a-days That Whenever The Cow, Bull Or Bullocks Are Transported By Any Goods Carriage Or Carried On Foot, They Are Generally Seized Either By The Police Or Some Anti-social Elements. The Uttar Pradesh Police Also Is Helpless Before Such Anti-social Elements, Who Are Violating The Fundamental Right Of Citizens To Carry The Trade Of Purchasing And Selling The Animals. Cow Slaughter Act Prohibits Slaughter Of Cow, Bull Or Bullock And Possession Of Beef, But Neither This Act, Nor Any Other Law For The Time Being In Force Prohibits The Trade Of Cow Or Its Progeny Within The State Of Uttar Pradesh. Unfortunately The Police Of Uttar Pradesh Is Also Helping Such Anti-social Elements By Seizing The Animals And Vehicles Carrying Them, Even No Offence Under Cow Slaughter Act Or Animals' Cruelty Act Is Made Out. Even More Unfortunate State Of Affairs In Uttar Pradesh Is That The Magistrates And Judges In Subordinate Courts Are Not Looking To This Matter And Either Due To Excessive Devotion To Cow Or Lack Of Legal Knowledge, They Are Not Only Declining To Release The Seized Animals Or Vehicles Carrying Them, But Without Applying Their Mind, They Are Rejecting The Bail Applications Also In Such Cases, Although No Offence Under Cow Slaughter Act Is Made Out And All The Offences Under Animals' Cruelty Act Are Bailable. While Making Inspection Of Rampur Judgship As Administrative Judge, I Found That A Large Number Of Bail Applications In Such Cases Were Rejected Not Only By The Magistrates, But Unfortunately The Then Sessions Judge And Some Additional Sessions Judges Also Did Not Care To See Whether Any Offence Under Cow Slaughter Act Is Made Out Or Not And Without Applying The Mind Bail Applications Even In Those Cases Were Rejected Where Two Or Three Bullocks Were Being Carried On Foot By The Accused. This Unfortunate Practice Of Rejecting The Bail Applications By Merely Seeing Section 3, 5, 5-A And 8 Of Cow Slaughter Act In FIR Is Prevalent Almost In The Whole Uttar Prdesh, Which Has Been Unnecessarily Increasing The Work Load Of High Court. By Declining Bail To The Accused Persons Under Cow Slaughter Act, Although No Offence Under This Act Is Made Out And The Offences Punishable Under Animals' Cruelty Act Are Bailable, The Personal Liberty Of The Accused Protected Under Article 21 Of The Constitution Of India Is Also Unnecessarily Curtailed Till Their Release On Granting Bail By The High Court.
15. The Court Below Has Declined To Release The Truck In Favour Of The Revisionists On The Ground That The Said Truck Was Being Used For Illegal Smuggling Of Cow Or Its Progeny For The Purpose Of Slaughtering, Which Is Serious Offence. Assuming For The Sake Of Argument That Slaughtering Of Cow Or Its Progeny Is Serious Offence, Even Then The Court Below Was Not Justified To Decline To Release The Truck In Question In Favour Of The Revisionists, Who Are Its Registered Owners, Because As I Have Stated Above, Mere Transportation Of The Cow, Bull Or Bullock From One Place To Another Place Within The State Of Uttar Pradesh Does Not Constitute Any Offence Under Cow Slaughter Act, Unless There Is Contravention Of Section 3 And 5-A Of The Act. As Stated Herein-above, There Was No Contravention Of Section 3 Or 5-A In The Present Case. Therefore, The Revisionists Are Entitled To Get The Supurdagi Of Their Truck. The Impugned Order Is Wholly Illegal Which Cannot Be Sustained.
12. Consequently, The Revision Is Allowed. The Impugned Order Is Set Aside And The Court Below Is Directed To Issue Notice To The Revisionists By Registered Post And Release Truck No. U.P. 70-S/8631 In Their Favour Without Demanding Any Kind Of Surety From Them.
The Office Is Directed To Send A Copy Of This Judgment Within A Week To The Lower Court Concerned For Necessary Action.

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