Andhra Pradesh High Court Upholds Earlier Judgement Stating Tobacco Does Not Fall Within Definition of “Food” and Police Does Not Have Any Jurisdiction To Investigate Any Offences Relating to FSSA, 2006

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Case: Katakam Brahman Versus The State of Andhra Pradesh 

Facts

In this case a crime in F.I.R. No. 36 of 2018 had been registered in the Durgi Police Station, Guntur Districts against the Petitioner for the offences under sections 188, 273, 420, 120(B) IPC and section 58, 59, 63 of FSSA act, 2006, because the petitioner was caught storing tobacco and tobacco products. The case was registered against the Petitioner, who was found to be storing or transporting tobacco products in the state of Andhra Pradesh. Aggrieved by the same the Petitioner filed the criminal petition before the court seeking relief from the proceedings arose from the F.I.R. registered against him. 

Arguments

The learned counsel for the Petitioner submitted before the court that in Crl. P. No. 5421 of 2019, a single judge of this court had held that tobacco does not fall within the definition of the “Food” and as such, registration of crime under Food Safety and Standards Acts, 2006 is not permissible. 

Further, it was submitted in Crl. No. 3731 of 2018, a single-judge bench of the Court held that the police would not have any jurisdiction to initiate or investigate any offences relating to Food Safety and Securities act, 2006. The judge also held that the transportation of or the storage of the tobacco and tobacco products would not constitute an offence punishable under sections 270 to 273 of IPC. 

Court’s Decision

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The Court is of the view that the aforesaid findings which are being consistently followed by the Court, this Criminal Petition is allowed. All the submissions made by the learned counsel of the Petitioner are the proved facts. Therefore, any application pending in respect of this Petition shall stand closed and there are no orders as to costs. 

Click here to view the Judgment.


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