1. This petition has been filed under Section 482, Cr.P.C. for quashing complaint No. 87 dated 23-10-1992-Annexure P-1, order Annexure P-2 dated 23-7-99 and notice-Annexure P3 dated 23-7-99 and the subsequent proceedings in the complaint (Annexure P-1) pending in the Court of Chief Judicial Magistrate, Mansa.
2. The petitioner is firm dealing in the sale of pesticides and insecticides. Girdhari Lal is the Proprietor of the firm. Hence, the present petition is filed through him. The petitioner on the date of appearance in the Court of C.J.M. Mansa moved an application for getting the sample tested from the Central Insecticides Testing Laboratory. The C.J.M. accepted the application of the petitioner and sent the sample for testing at the expense of the petitioner. The report has been given by the Central Insecticides Testing Laboratory that testing cannot be carried out as the period of insecticides has already expired. Learned counsel for the petitioner submits that clearly the defence of the petitioner has been prejudiced. It is further submitted that the petitioner had given reply on 30-10-91 to the notice dated 21-10-91. The petitioner in this reply had made a request that the sample be sent to Central Insecticides Laboratory for testing. This was not done. The proceedings were not initiated immediately. Rather they were initiated at the fag end of the shelf life of the insecticides in question. It is, therefore, submitted that the petitioner is entitled to protection under Section 30(3) of the Insecticides Act. Since the petitioner is not a manufacturer or importer of the insecticides, he is not liable for prosecution.
3. I have heard the learned counsel for the parties.
4. A perusal of the complaint shows that the sample has been taken from sealed containers. The sealed sample was sent to the Senior Analyst, Insecticide Testing Laboratory, Ludhiana on 6-9-91 i.e. on the date when the sample was taken. The test report was received on 9-10-91. The sample was declared misbranded. Notice as required under Section 24(2) of the Insecticides Act, 1968 was issued on 21-10-91. A perusal of the order passed by the Chief Judicial Magistrate shows that the show-cause notice along with test report was sent to the manufacturer, but no response was given from the manufacturer. The petitioner had requested for re-testing of the insecticides from Central Insecticides Laboratory. In spite of the request of the petitioner, the sample was not sent for re-testing. It was only sent when the application was moved before the Chief Judicial Magistrate and by that time, the shelf-life of the insecticides had expired.
5. In these circumstances, I am of the considered opinion that the defence of the petitioner has been prejudiced. The proceedings, therefore, cannot be permitted to continue. Similar matter cam up for consideration before the Hon’ble Supreme Court in case State of Haryana v. Unique Farmaid P. Ltd., R.C.R. (Criminal) (1999) 4 Rec Cri R 540 : (2000 Cri LJ 2962). After considering the entire matter, the Hon’ble Supreme Court observed that the respondents in those appeals have been deprived of their valuable rights to have the sample tested from the Central Insecticides Laboratory under Section 24(4) of the Act. Consequently, the proceedings were directed to be quashed.
6. In view of the above, this petition is allowed. Complaint-Annexure P-1, order dated 23-7-99-Annexure P-2 proceedings pending before the Chief Judicial Magistrate, on the basis of complaint-Annexure P-1 are hereby quashed. No costs.
7. Petition allowed.