represents at which particular context or place. So here the court will have to go beyond the statute and yet stick to the same literal words of the statute to ascertain its meaning. Also the ambiguity sometimes is “syntactic”84 which means the vagueness arises from words like “or”,“and”, “all” and other such words. For example if a punishment for a certain crime is “fine or imprisonment or both”, the court can imprison the accused or impose a fine or impose a fine as well as imprison him. If the language of the statute is clear and unambiguous, the Court cannot discard the plain meaning, even if it leads to an injustice.85The words cannot be understood properly without the context in which it is used. The strict adherence to this principle may cause injustice and sometimes it might give results which are quite contrary to general intention of the statute or common sense.86 In case there is some lacuna or omission in the statute which prevents it from giving a complete idea, or it makes it logically incomplete, it is the duty of the court to make up the defect by adding or altering something, but the court is not allowed to do more than that. It is permissible only in cases where the statutes are inapplicable in their present form, which is incomplete. For the change, either alteration or addition the court looks into the matters which will probably help it in ascertaining the intention of the legislature. It is not necessary that judges would always find some or the other means to help them in cases of defective texts. There will be some cases where they might find nothing of this kind. They may ascertain the intention of the legislature which presumably, would have had the defect come to notice.
One of the problems of literal rule is that it breeds absurdity. Sometimes...
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