Food Adulteration

Prevention of Food Adulteration Act

The Act is a welfare legislation to prevent health hazards by consuming adulterated food. The mens rea is not an essential ingredient. It is a social evil and the Act prohibits commission of the offences under the Act. The essential ingredient is sale to the purchaser by the vendor. It is not material to establish the capacity of the person vis a vis the owner of the shop to prove his authority to sell the adulterated food exposed for sale in the shop. It is enough for the prosecution to establish that the person who sold the adulterated article of food had sold it to the purchaser (including the Food Inspector) and that Food Inspector purchased the same in strict compliance with the provisions of the Act.
The sanctioning authority has to consider the material placed before it whether the offence of adulteration of food was committed and punishable under the Act. Once that satisfaction is reached and the authority is competent to grant the sanction, the sanction is valid. It is not necessary for the sanctioning authority to consider that the person sold is the owner, servant, agent or partner or relative of the owner or was duly authorised in this behalf. (See State of Orissa v. K. Rajeshwar Rao, 1992 CrLJ 300 : 1992 AIR (SC) 240 : 1992 (Cr) 177 : 1992 CAR 45 : 1992 CrLR (SC) 390 : 1991(3) Crimes 868)