General Explanations IPC
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Section – 21 Public Servant
Who are the Public Servant ?
21. “Public servant”.—The words “public servant” signify a person who comes under any of the descriptions namely:
First – Repealed by the Adaptation of Laws Order, 1950;
Second.—Every Commissioned Officer in the Military, Naval or Air Forces of India;
Third.—Every Judge including any person empowered by law to discharge, whether by himself or as a member of any body of persons, any adjudicatory functions;
Fourth.—Every officer of a Court of Justice (including a liquidator, receiver or commissioner) whose duty is, as such officer, to investigate or report on any matter of law or fact, or to make, authenticate, or keep any document, or to take charge or dispose of any property, or to execute any judicial process, or to administer any oath, or to interpret, or to preserve order in the Court, and every person specially authorised by a Court of Justice to perform any of such duties;
Fifth.—Every juryman, assessor, or member of a panchayat assisting a Court of Justice or public servant
Sixth.—Every arbitrator or other person to whom any cause or matter has been referred for decision or report by any Court of Justice, or by any other competent public authority;
Seventh.—Every person who holds any office by virtue of which he is empowered to place or keep any person in confinement;
Eighth.—Every officer of the Government whose duty is, as such officer, to prevent offences, to give information of offences, to bring offenders to justice, or to protect the public health, safety or convenience;
Ninth.—Every officer whose duty is as such officer, to take, receive, keep or expend any property on behalf of the Government, or to make any survey, assessment or contract on behalf of the Government, or to execute any revenue-process, or to investigate, or to report, on any matter affecting the pecuniary interests of the Government, or to make, authenticate or keep any document relating to the pecuniary interests of the Government, or to prevent the infraction of any law for the protection of the pecuniary interests of the Government;
Tenth.—Every officer whose duty is, as such officer, to take, receive, keep or expend any property, to make any survey or assessment or to levy any rate or tax for any secular common purpose of any village, town or district, or to make, authenticate or keep any document for the ascertaining of the rights of the people of any village, town or district;
Eleventh.—Every person who holds any office in virtue of which he is empowered to prepare, publish, maintain or revise an electoral roll or to conduct an election or part of an election;
(a) in the service or pay of the Government or remunerated by fees or commission for the performance of any public duty by the Government;
(b) in the service or pay of a local authority, a corporation established by or under a Central, Provincial or State Act or a Government company as defined in section 617 of the Companies Act, 1956 (1 of 1956).]
A Municipal Commissioner is a public servant.
Explanation 1.—Persons falling under any of the above descriptions are public servants, whether appointed by the Government or not.
Explanation 2.—Wherever the words “public servant” occur, they shall be understood of every person who is in actual possession of the situation of a public servant, whatever legal defect there may be in his right to hold that situation.
Explanation 3.—The word “election” denotes an election for the purpose of selecting members of any legislative, municipal or other public authority, of whatever character, the method of selection to which is by, or under, any law prescribed as by election.
State Amendment Rajasthan
Thirteen – Every person employed or engaged by any public body in the conduct and supervision of any examination recognised or approved under any law.
Explanation – The expression “ Public Body” includes-
- A University, Board of Education or other body, either established by or under a Central or State Act or under the provisions of the constitution of India or constituted by the Government; and
- A Local body.
To test to determine whether a person is a public servant is
- Whether he is in the service or pay of the Government and
- Whether he is entrusted with the performance of any public duty.
- XXX (Repealed)
- Commissioned Officer in Army( Military, Navy or Airforce) in india.
- Judge or any person empowered by law to discharge any adjudicatory functions.
- Every officer of Court (liquidator, receiver or commissioner) whose duty to investigate or report on any matter of law or fact.
- Juryman, Accessor or member of a panchayat
- Arbitrator or any other person to whom any case is reffered for decision.
- Every person who can keep person in confinement
- Such person whose duty is to stop offence.
- Person who does assesment of revenue on behalf of Govt or whose duty is to take, receive, keep or expend any property on behalf of the Government,
- Person relating to levy any tax for any secular common purpose of any village, town or district.
- Such person who has electoral roll.
- Such person who is in service or pay of govt. for performance of public duty on fee.
- Includes such person who is into local authority.
- Every person who supervise or conduct public exam.
Explanation – 1 Every Government Servant is public servant but every public servant is not govt. servant. It is not necessary that all public servant are appointed by govt.
Explanation The Word Public Servant includes every person
Explanation W/e Matter is of election then election of any manner or , of any post
Case Law –R. S. Nayak v A. R. Antule
SC held that MLA is not a Public servant because he is liable only for his party.
PV Narasimha Rao v State, AIR 1998 SC 2120
Member of Parliament ( MP) is a Public Servant
M Karunanidhi v UOI, AIR 1979 SC 898
Chief Ministers & Ministers are Public Servant
P Nallammal v State, UOI, 1999 CrLJ 3604
Speaker of Legislative assembly is a public servant
UOI v Ashok Kumar Mitra, AIR 1995 SC 1976
Employee of a Nationalised Bank is a public servant
Ram Krishan v State of Delhi, AIR 1956 SC 1976
All Railway Servants are public servant
State of Ajmer v Shiv Lal,AIR 1959 SC 847
Teacher in a Govt. school is a public servant
Maharudrappa Danappa Kesarappanavar v The State of Mysure, AIR 1961 SC 785
Chairman of managing committee of a municipality is a public servant
State through CentralBureau of Investigation v D P Dogra, AIR 1986 SC 312 Employees of life insurance corporation
State (SPE, Hyderabad) v Air commodore Kailash Chand, AIR 1980 SC 522
Member of Auxiliary Air Force
State of MP v M Narsimhan, AIR 1975 SC 1835
Employees of Bharat Heavy Electricals ( Inmdia) Limited are public servant
National Small Industries Corporation Ltd v State AIR 2009 SC 1284
Employees of Government Company are public servant
Bihar State Electricity Board v Nand Kishore Tamakhuwala, AIR 1986 SC
Officers of State Electricity Board
General Explanations IPC