The Allahabad HC on Thursday ruled that Non-iodized salt can be sold for animal use, iodization iron fortification, manufacture of medicine and for industrial use.
The bench of Justice Jyotsna Sharma was dealing with the criminal revision filed to allow the revision for setting aside and stay the operation of the impugned judgments and order passed by Additional District and Sessions Judge, Aligarh and 1st Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate, Aligarh respectively, respondent nos. 2 and 3
In this case, the accused was challaned for selling non-iodized salt. The challan came to be filed by the Food Inspector after initially taking 500 gm of sample of edible salt, testing the same and after adopting the prescribed procedure filing a complaint, finding same to be non-iodized. He was declared guilty and sentenced as above.
The convict filed an appeal against the above judgment and order. The appellant court confirmed the order of the trial court and dismissed the appeal.
The issue for consideration before the bench was:
Whether the order passed by the Appellate Court needs interference or not?
High Court noted that the burden of proof definitely lied on the prosecution side to prove that the salt in question was being sold for human consumption and not for animal or industrial use or any other purpose.
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The bench observed that this fact is not disputed that at the time of occurrence, the law relating to food adulteration prescribed that any common salt exposed for sale for human consumption must be iodized in the manner as prescribed. The law required that non-iodized salt cannot be sold for human consumption, however, any uniodized salt for animal use or for the purpose of iodization iron fortification, manufacture of medicine and for industrial use was permitted by law to be sold.
High Court stated that “if “the law or precedent” is beneficial to the accused then unless it is prohibited, the benefit should be given to the accused retrospectively. Hence, this revision deserves to be allowed on two grounds. Firstly, the Rule 44-I which was the basis of conviction was declared ultra-vires the rule-making powers of the government. Secondly, the evidence was deficient on the point that the sample in fact belonged to that category of common salt which was exposed for direct human consumption.”
In view of the above, the bench allowed the revision.
Case Title: Umesh v. The State of UP and others
Bench: Justice Jyotsna Sharma
Case No.: CRIMINAL REVISION No. – 175 of 2002
Counsel for the Appellant: Ashok Nath Tripathi and Satendra Kumar Gupta
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