Topic: U.P. Pollution Control Board Vs Dr. Bhupendra Kumar Modi & Anr

U.P. Pollution Control Board Vs Dr. Bhupendra Kumar Modi & Anr
Criminal Appellate Jurisdiction - Criminal Appeal NO. 2019 OF 2008 (Arising out of S.L.P. (Crl.) No. 1660 of 2005) – Date of Judgment: 12 December, 2008

P. Sathasivam, J. 

1) Leave granted. 

2) This appeal is directed against the order dated 29.11.2004 passed in Crl. Misc. Case No. 1347 of 2001 of the High Court of Judicature at Allahabad, Lucknow Bench quashing the Complaint Case No. 44 of 1988 filed by the U.P. Pollution Control Board, Lucknow through its officers against M/s Modi Carpets Ltd. Raebareli and 12 others under Section 44 of the Water (Prevention & Control of Pollution) Act, 1974 (hereinafter referred to as "the Act") pending in the Court of Special Judicial Magistrate (Pollution), Lucknow.
3) Background facts, in a nutshell, are as follows: The State Board for Prevention and Control of Water Pollution was constituted on 03.02.1975 by the Government of U.P. and it has been named as - U.P. Pollution Control Board (hereinafter referred to as "the Board") which is the appellant herein vide notification No. 2179/9-2-100-74 dated 13.07.1982. On the application submitted by M/s Modi Carpets Ltd., Raebareli, seeking consent to discharge effluent, the appellant-Board granted conditional consent main ground that there was no material on record to 5  show that respondent No.1 was, at the relevant time, incharge and responsible to the company for conduct of its business. Aggrieved by the said judgment of the Lucknow Bench, the appellant-Board has filed the above appeal by way of special leave. 

7) Heard Mr. Rakesh K. Khanna, learned Senior Counsel, appearing for the appellant-Board and Mr. L.N. Rao, learned senior counsel, appearing for the 1st respondent. 8) The only point for consideration in this appeal is whether the complaint of U.P. Pollution Control Board discloses any material against the first respondent i.e., Dr. Bhupendra Kumar Modi, Joint Managing Director, particularly, his control over the decision making process of the Company and whether the High Court was justified in quashing the same in so far as Dr. Bhupendra Kumar Modi in a petition under Section 482 Cr.P.C. 

9) The High Court while accepting the case of Dr.Bhupendra Kumar Modi perused the complaint of the Board. According to it, nowhere it is specifically stated in the complaint and there is also no material on record to show that Dr. Bhupendra Kumar first respondent who is Joint Managing Director of the Company. In those circumstances, we are of the view that the above-mentioned decisions relied on by the first respondent are not helpful to the stand taken by him. It is useful to refer the decision in the case of U.P. Pollution Control Board vs Messrs Modi Distillery and Others, (1987) 3 SCC 684. The said case, by special leave, was directed against the judgment and order of the High Court of Allahabad dated 16.05.1984 setting aside, in its revisional jurisdiction, order of the CJM, Ghaziabad dated 03.11.1983 directing issue of process against the respondents therein on a complaint filed by the appellant Pollution Control Board under Section 44 of Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974. The issue involved therein was whether the Chairman, Vice-Chairman, Managing 1  7  Director and Members of the Board of Directors of M/s Modi Industries Limited, the company owning the industrial unit called M/s Modi Distillery could be proceeded against on a complaint against the said industrial unit. Learned Single Judge of the High Court found that there was no sufficient ground against the respondent inasmuch as the allegations made.