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Equivalent Citation: AIR1951SC41, (1951)53BOMLR499, 21CompCas33(SC), 1SCR869 IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
Decided On: 04.12.1950
Appellants: Chiranjit Lal Chowdhuri
Respondent: The Union of India (UOI) and Ors.
Harilal Kania, C.J., Saiyid Fazl Ali, Patanjali Sastri, Mukherjea and Das, JJ. Subject: Constitution
Constitution of India - Articles 14, 19(1), 19(5), 31 and 32; Sholapur Spinning and Weaving Company (Emergency Provisions) Act, 1950 Citing Reference:
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Sholapur Spinning and Weaving Company Act 1950-Act Dismissing Company's managing agents, removing its directors, authorising government for appointment of new directors and curtailing shareholders' right in the voting matter etc.-Validity-Whether infringement on fundamental rights-Right of property save not to be deprived by authority of law-Right to acquire, hold and dispose property-Right to equal protection of law Constitution of India, Arts. 14, 19(1) (f), 19(f), 31, 32-Deprivation of property,-- Meaning of “property”, “acquisition”, “taking possession”, “equal protection”-Under Art 32, right to apply-Right of shareholders. JUDGMENT
1. This is an application by the holder of one ordinary share of the Sholapur Spinning and Weaving Company Ltd. for a writ of mandamus and certain other reliefs under article 32 of the Constitution of India. The authorized capital of the company is Rs. 48 lakhs and the paid-up capital is Rs. 32 lakhs, half of which is made up of fully paid ordinary shares of Rs. 1,000 each. 2. I have read the judgment prepared by Mr. Justice Mukherjea. In respect of the arguments advanced to challenge the validity of the impugned Act under articles 31 and 19 of the Constitution of India, I agree with his line of reasoning and conclusion and have nothing more to add. 3. On the question whether the impugned Act infringes article 14, two points have to be considered. The first is whether one individual shareholder can, under the circumstances of the case and particularly when one of the respondents is the company which opposes the petition, challenge the validity of the Act on the ground that it is a piece of discriminatory legislation, creates inequality before the law and violates the principle of equal protection of the laws under article 14 of the Constitution of India. The second is whether in fact the petitioner has shown that the Act runs contrary to article 14 of the Constitution. In this case heaving regard to my conclusion on the second point, I do not think it is necessary to pronounce a definite opinion on the first point. I agree with the line of reasoning and the conclusion of Mr. Justice Mukherjea as regards the second point relating to the invalidity of the Act on the ground that it infringes article 14 of the Constitution and have nothing more to add. 4. In my opinion therefore this petition fails and is dismissed with costs. Fazl Ali, J.
5. I am strongly of the opinion that this petition should be dismissed with costs. 6. The facts urged in the petition and the points raised on behalf of the petitioner before us are fully set forth in the judgments of my brethern, Sastri, Mukherjea and Das JJ., and I do not wish to repeat them here. It is...