Patna High Court: The Bench of Ahsanuddin Amanullah, J. dismissed an application seeking relief in the matter wherein cognizance of the offence had been taken under Section 7 of the Essential Commodities Act.
The facts of the case are that the petitioner in the godown run by him had a huge quantity of rice stored in gunny bags of Food Corporation of India along with its tag, which were sealed as well as unsealed. The main allegation against the petitioner was not only of storage of a huge quantity of rice but also of not being able to explain the source and most importantly, the sealed bags of foodgrains bearing FCI tag. The petitioner submitted that under the Essential Commodities Act, 1955, there is no Control Order with regard to storage of rice and, thus, the godown having the rice was not an offence by itself. It was further submitted that the petitioner has bought the rice from various grain merchants.
The Court held that the allegations against the petitioner were not only of procuring a huge quantity of rice, but more importantly, bearing the logo of FCI and also having FCI tag, for which there is no explanation, and thus, the charge against the petitioner cannot be said to be false and frivolous. The petition was thus dismissed. [Dilip Kumar Sah v. State of Bihar, 2019 SCC OnLine Pat 208, Order dated 15-02-2019]