Home News Judgements Municipal Council Ratlam vs Shri Vardhichand Case Brief

Municipal Council Ratlam vs Shri Vardhichand Case Brief

Municipal Council, Ratlam Vs Shri Vardhichand and Ors, 29 July 1980 AIR 1622, 1981 SCR (1)


This case issues the Ratlam municipality’s responsibilities to its human beings beneath Section 123 M. P.Municipalities Act of 1961.These responsibilities encompass the availability of sanitary centers and the prevention of road infection from a close-by alcohol plant. The citizens of the Ratlam municipality, pissed off at the shortage of sanitary centers and the infection within the streets, introduced healthy towards the municipality beneath Section 133 of the Criminal Procedure Code for public nuisance. The municipality argued that, 1) the citizens selected to stay wherein there aren’t any center, and 2) the government lacked the finances essential to assemble what become required to conform.The Magistrate ordered the municipality to offer the right centers and assemble drainpipes to bog down the infection.The order become appealed to the High Court, which affirmed the order below. The Supreme Court then taken into consideration whether or not a Court may want to affirmatively compel a statutory frame to assemble sanitary centers and drainpipes at super cost. The Supreme Court upheld the High Court’s order, maintaining that the Magistrate had the electricity to compel a statutory frame to conform with the order within the call of public responsibility. The Supreme Court additionally held that Section 133 of the Criminal Procedure Code operates towards statutory our bodies and may be used to get rid of a public nuisance in a restricted time period. Furthermore, the Supreme Court discovered that a municipality can not declare economic incapacity whilst it’s far accountable for retaining public fitness. The Supreme Court stated, “[a] accountable municipal council constituted for an appropriate motive of retaining public fitness and imparting higher budget can not run far from its predominant responsibility through pleading economic incapacity. Decency and dignity are non-negotiable aspects of human rights and are a primary price on nearby self-governing our bodies.”


1.In this situation citizens of Ratlam metropolis located in country of Madhya Pradesh turned into the petitioners .

 2. Some of the citizens of Ratlam metropolis filed criticism earlier than Sub Divisional Magistrate of Ratlam metropolis alleging that municipality of that location isn’t building right drains as required and due to excertion created with the aid of using close by slum dwellers resulted into stench and stink in that location which led public nuisance to the petitioners of the case.

3. The Sub Divisional Magistrate of Ratlam district advised the municipality to put together a right improvement plan inside 6 months of the criticism submitted with the aid of using the citizens of Ratlam metropolis.

4. The instructions the Sub Divisional Magistrate to the municipality turned into permitted with the aid of using High Court. 

5. Afterwards the municipality got here in attraction earlier than the apex courtroom docket of India and alleged that they do now no longer have right monetary help in addition to right budget to conform with the route given with the aid of using the sub divisional Justice of the Peace of Ratlam metropolis.

6. After that, Supreme courtroom docket supply route to the municipality to observe the instructions given with the aid of using the Sub Divisional Justice of the Peace beneath Section 123 of Municipality Act , 1961and stated that scarcity of budget isn’t a defence to perform the simple responsibilities finished with the aid of using the nearby government of a selected region.  

Issues raised

The issue that was raised in this case was Whether with the aid of using affirmative movement a courtroom docket can compel a statutory frame to perform responsibility in the direction of network to have a right sanitation facility at extra cost.


It is visible that the judges have opted to be liberal in decoding the ambit of social justice.Apparently, the ancient history changed into additionally in guide of the judgement as India had very currently confronted an emergency which changed into quite wondered on its unjustness. The case reiterates the judicial activism and the position of the judges in reforming the legal guidelines of the u . s .through prioritising the freedom and dignity of the people.The judiciary has considered the human rights on one hand and the environmental safety however as the 2 faces of the equal coin.The choice proves that judiciary is a protector of essential rights as in this example it blanketed the proper of every person with regards to surroundings beneath Art. 21 of the Indian Constitution.This judgement have become a watch opener for the public-lively people and recommended them to record petitions to clear up nearby environmental issues.This reformed the complete machine and some of instances were filed earlier than distinct courts looking for treatments towards environmental pollution. The content material of the case visible at the side of the Article 32 and 226 of the Constitution of India changed into to facilitate the emergence of PIL, having been framed or amended upon the tenets of social justice. Definitely the case changed into reasoned and justified through the Hon’ble judges of the Supreme Court of India.


One can usually argue that given the genuinity of the plea raised via way of means of the Municipality in this example(8), it turns into hard to implement the judgement surpassed and the order of the Justice of the Peace on ground. And in any such state of affairs Municipality is left without option.

However within the 12 months 1993, via way of means of manner of 73rd and 74th modification within the constitution, the neighbourhood our bodies have been given powers to address the environmental issues. So this turned into an essential improvement submit Ratlam case which left no area for such a controversy to rise up in destiny at the start place

Every proper has center and penumbra Meaning (HLA Hart). The center element is specifiable while the penumbra element is flexible (a well-known instance may be the elastic nature of a rubber band).The judiciary translates and performs with this elastic element and Environment may be nowadays visible as a third technology human proper.Because each human proper has few key functions like, 1.the applicability to everybody no matter geography or social backgrounds, etc (the conventional aspect). 2.the essential detail concerned in it that’s that it need to be enforceable with MİNİMUM assets and linked to specifiability 3. The specifiability and non ambiguity Making it clear

Considering some of these factors, construing the surroundings as part of human rights in this example via way of means of the courtroom docket turned into certainly a visionary method via way of means of Justice Krishna lyer if one evaluates it primarily based totally on those touchstones.

Judgement: Municipal Council Ratlam V. Vardhichand 

Justice Krishna lyer, recognized the provisions within the IPC and CrPC regarding the regulation of public nuisance and interpreted them within the contemporary case.

Firstly, as a long way because the statutory duty goes, the Municipality can’t turn away from its obligation in violation of its rule book/regulation which places a tremendous responsibility on it. Secondly, the courtroom docket taken into consideration the factor of public nuisance in contravention of Section 133. of CrPC. Section 133. to $.143 of Crec are precise provisions which lay down procedural in addition to sizeable regulation.They also are called “SUMMary remedies”. Section 133.lay down the powers of Magistrate/Sub Div.Magistrate together with the system wherein a “conditional order” may be given. For example you could virtually compel a police officer to do so which may be exceeded directly to the Magistrate who troubles display Cause note as to the cause asking the violator why the conditional order should not be exceeded. He desires to seem earlier than the Magistrate for the same. This order may be finally vacated (if compiled with) in any other case may be made permanent.

A public authority’s path can’t be defied and if now no longer observed is punishable u/s 188 of the IPC 1860. S.188 of the IPC, Mandates the pride of following components to represent a violation, 1.A lawful order promulgated through an authority/ public servant 2. Knowledge of the order 3.Disobedience of that order 4. Result probably to comply with because of disobedience of such order

For it to represent an offence beneath this a segment, disobedience must have result attached(5) like annoyance or obstruction. In this case, the result is carefully associated with public nuisance as non Compliance of the Justice of the Peace’s order could result in fitness and environmental troubles. The Municipality took the same old defence taken in opposition to this segment which changed into that the order changed into incorrect within the feel that they Tacked finances. The courtroom docket construed this proper of the residents as a “human proper and shortage of finances isn’t any excuse that could stand in opposition to this kind of proper. Court on this regard said,

Decency and dignity are non-negotiable aspects of human rights and are a primary rate on nearby self-governing bo Similarly, offering drainage systems-… 

The courtroom docket additionally opined that such self defence is disgraceful because the Municipality has finances to combat the case however now no longer alleviate the troubles confronted through the general public. It says,

“Had the municipal council and its govt officials spent 1/2 of this litigative zeal on cleansing up the road and building the drains through rousing the people’s sramdan assets and laying out the city’s confined economic assets, the people’s desires could have been in large part met lengthy ago. “

Court found that order u/s 133 CrPC is compulsory and Mandatory for the Municipality to abide through and the plea of economic incapacity is definitely unjustified in such instances wherein public nuisance is brought about. This segment additionally furthered the purpose of social justice and rule of regulation in lighting fixtures of global tendencies and the placement India took regarding the environment. Therefore the Municipality changed into directed to pop out with a plan and follow the order of the Justice of the Peace.

Adding to the above dialogue courtroom docket additionally mentioned the Gobind Singh case[6] which worried the Justice of the Peace directing the proprietor of the bakery to demolish his oven and chimney because it brought about inconvenience to the general public at massive beneath the applicable sections mentioned above. The Supreme courtroom docket but did now no longer absolutely consider the Complete closure which could close down the baker’s trade (asking baker to end trade), however depended on the findings of the Sub Divisional Magistrate in nearby inspection of the site. This changed into a alternate in role from the sooner precedents(7] wherein the courtroom docket puzzled the “medical evidence” or the findings of the Justice of the Peace. Therefore the courtroom docket took tremendous factor from the judgement in Gobind Singh case and quoted it,

“We are of the opinion that during a count number of this nature wherein what’s worried isn’t always Merely the proper of a non-public man or woman however the fitness, protection and comfort of the general public at massive, the more secure direction could be to simply accept the view of the found out Magista who noticed for himself the threat resulting

“We are of the opinion that during a count number of this nature wherein what’s worried isn’t always Merely the proper of a non-public man or woman however the fitness, protection and comfort of the general public at massive, the more secure direction could be to simply accept the view of the found out Magistrate, who noticed for himself the threat on account of the operating of the bakery.”


As in step with my view ,the judgement given with the aid of using the honourable choose in this situation turned into a milestone within the direction of environmental safety. It may be without problems referred to as as landmark judgement in environmental safety .The judiciary has regarded the human rights on one hand and the environmental safety then again as the 2 faces of the equal coin. The choice proves that judiciary is protector of essential proper as in this situation it covered the proper of every character in terms of surroundings beneath Art. 21 of the Constitution.Therefore, in keeping with my view the decision given in this situation is cheap and justified.

This case brief has been written by Ahana Dubey, from Jogesh Chandra Chaudhuri Law College, Kolkata.


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