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Ajudhia Prasad Vs Emperor

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Citations: Ajudhia Prasad Vs Emperor, AIR 1928 All 752

Date of Judgement: 30/08/1928

Equivalent citations: AIR 1928 All 752, 113 Ind Cas 179

Case No.: Criminal Revision No. 601

Case Type: Criminal Appeal

Appellant: Ajudhia Prasad Dhobi

Respondent: Emperor

Bench: Hon’ble Justice J. Dalal

Court: Allahabad High Court

Statutes Referred:

  • The Indian Penal Code, 1860; Section 116, 161

Cases referred:

  • Kishan Lal Vs Emperor [1904] 1 A.L.J. 207
  • Pulipati Venkiah Vs Emperor A.I.R. 1924 Mad. 851

Facts:

  • This is an appeal by the applicant, Ajudhia Prasad against his conviction under Section 161 of Indian Penal Code (corresponding to Section 7 of Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988) read with Section 116 of Indian Penal Code.
  • Ajudhia Prasad introduced the bribe giver to the Assistant Superintendent of Police Mr. Naqvi.
  • Mr Naqvi heard from a female worker what Ajudhia expected and made arrangements to get Ajudhia and the principal individual Narain Das, who wanted that the Assistant Superintendent of Police should utilize favor in the activity of his authority capacities.
  • The favour wanted by Narain Das was that his sibling’s name might be taken out from Register No. 8 of awful characters of the Jhansi Police headquarters.
  • The Public Servant didn’t accept the bribe.

Issue Involved:

  • Whether the appellant is liable under Section 116 of the Indian Penal Code?
  • Is it a crime to take a bribe even when the act done to the bribe giver is just and proper?
  • Is it an offense if the public servant does not accept the bribe?
  • Is it a bribe if it is given for doing work which is not within the official duty of the respected person?

Contention of Appellant:

  • Ajudhiya Prasad argued that he was not liable for the conviction in the case of bribing a public servant but he only introduced the bribe giver to the Assistant Superintendent of Police Mr. Naqvi, which doesn’t fall under Section 116 of Indian Penal Code.
  • He offered a bribe as a reward to the public servant.

Contention of Respondent:

  • He has contended that the Associate Superintendent was not accountable for this specific register and couldn’t eliminate the name of any individual from that register in the activity of his authority work.
  • In this way, the official was not in a situation to show favour to Narayan Das and consequently, if the official had acknowledged the cash, he would not have been at real fault for accepting hush money and hence the individual giving the payoff couldn’t have been blameworthy under the arrangements under Section 116 of the Indian Penal Code.
  • The respondent took the support of Pulipati Venkiah Vs Emperor A.I.R. 1924 Mad. 851. in which the Judge wrote the judgement that It must be shown that the accused had taken bribe or motive to do official work, that the allegation against Karnam was that he had taken bribe from a villager on the understanding that he would give him some dark land. This does not constitute ego under Section 161 as being dark is not an official act of a karnam.

Judgement:

The conviction was upheld but the sentence was reduced by the court.

  • Hon’ble Justice Dalal opined that the Judge in the case of Pulipati Venkiah Vs Emperoroverlooked the Section 161 of Indian Penal Code.
  • Also, the punishment was very harsh, keeping in mind the fact that Narayan Das has been left with only a fine.

Ratio Decidendi:

  • In reaching that conclusion the Allahabad High court decided that Erroneous representation by the public servant that the act is within official duty, still the act comes within ambit of Section 161 Indian Penal Code (corresponding to Section 7 of Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988).

Obiter Dicta:

A very strange reason has been given for the difference of opinion by the Magistrate.

  • “Narain Das wept and looked’ sad. The Dhobi did neither. Possibly the Dhobi was not aware of the sensitiveness of the Court who tried him. As a rule, Indians are very quick at weeping and knocking their heads on the ground.”
  • “Secondly, “please walk into my parlour, said the spider to the fly” is a class of conduct at which my mind revolts. I reduced the sentence to rigorous imprisonment for one month.”

Conclusion:

The High Court of Allahabad held that even where an act isn’t inside the activity of the authority obligation of a community worker, for example, the activity of impact to acquire a title, assuming a local official mistakenly addresses that the specific demonstration is inside the activity of his authority obligation he would be responsible to conviction under Section 161 of Indian Penal Code, if he got a satisfaction by inciting such a wrong confidence in someone else.

Drafted by: Mumuksha Singh, University of Rajasthan, Five-year Law College.

Edited by: Aashima Kakkar, Associate Editor, Law Insider

Published On: November 23, 2021 at 12:50 IST