Hearing of the case resumed.
Accused No.2 is not present, exempted as he has been from personal appearance.
Accused No. 2 is absent to-day and an application has been filed on his behalf to be represented through his lawyer. I allow the this application, in view of the authority reported in A.I.R. 1947 Madras 433: In re: Ummal Hasanath. Grant, Sect. 205 or sect. 540 A of the Code would not apply though the latter section may be stretched to apply. Still there is sect. 353 of the Procedure Code as held in that Madras case, and in virtue thereof I permit accused no. 3 to be represented by his lawyer for this day only.
I examine one court-witness for a just decision of the case and offer him for examination by the Prosecution and the accused. That done, I have heard learned Advocates of both sides in the matter of a charge being framed under sect. 500 of the Penal Code. Draft charge filed by the prosecution be kept with the record.
Now I come to merits of the case. This interesting litigation is all about an M.D.Degree of the Western University of Illinois-ext. II used by the complainant before me a Homoeopathic Doctor.
I have considered the evidence led before me oral and documentary.
It is clear from the evidence of the Court witness an official of the American Consulate here that the Western University of Illinois is not one of the approved Universities.
The letter of the Consulate ext. 9 (not marked by the Prosecution buy by me as the result of examination of the Court witness) is there. The penultimate paragraph of the said letter leaves no room for doubt that the Western University of Illinois bears the stigma of a bogus institution. Further, the list of approved institutions approved by the Attorney General, U.S.A., is fortunately before me. It is ext. IX.
The University by which the complainant swears is not listed there. True it is that there is a later list. But as the court witness makes it clear that the letter of the Consulate was issued on the basis of that latest list. Attention may now be called to Rule 4 of the Ethical rules- ext. 6. Going by this rule and the complaint being a member of the Faculty was bound to go by the same a rule of the Faculty he should not have used the title for the simple reason that it was not recognised by the Government of U.S.A.
I do not overlook the fact that the complainant is a homoeopath and a member of the Faculty too. But he is so, not because of this mushroom degree but in spite of it. because of his strength of practice as is made clear in ext. A.
These then are the facts and I have no doubt in my mind that the degree of M.D. used by the complainant is a bogus degree.
Once that is conceded, the accused come under exception 1 to sect. 499 and other exceptions, too. Indeed, they have done a public service by exposing the hollowness of the vaunted degree.
It is not of the least materiality that the complainant was exposed first and then enquiries were made in the Consulate and in the Govt. of India What is of materiality is if the imputations made are true. And I hold that the imputation in regard to the degree being a bogus one is true.
That being so, there is no case and I discharge the accused all of them under sect. 253 (1) of the Procedure Code.