It is to be noted here that the provision of section 21 of the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940, makes it abundantly clear that the post of Drug Inspector is a very vital public post with wide range of powers to take samples and seize the samples and prosecute the persons for selling the adulterours, suprious and sub-standard quality drugs. In view of such vital powers conferred bysection 21 of the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940 on such Drug Inspectors, the said section clearly, mandates that the Central Government or the State Government, may issue notification in Official Gazatte so as to appoint such Drug Inspectors for such areas as assigned to them. The intention of the legislature is very clear from the said section 21 of the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940 that the appointment of such a person holding such an important post as a Drug Inspector, especially in the interest of public heath, obviously will have to be notified in the Official Gazette and that the said notification should indicate the area in which the said Drug Inspector can exercise his powers. In fact, section 21 does not say that the publication of notification in Official Gazette is discretionary. If one were to look at the wording of the said section carefully, the Central Government or the State Government may appoint such qualified persons as the Drug Inspectors as it thinks fit. In fact, the wording of the said section 21 shows that there is coma after the word may and not before the said word so as to construe that the issuance of the notification in the Official Gazette is discretionary.
41. Taking into account all the purposes and objects of the Act and the powers conferred on the Drug Inspector who is the vital authority to initiate the prosecution, I hold that the appointment of Drug Inspector can only be through an Official Gazette Notification and not otherwise. I am also of the opinion that such a notification should also indicate the area in which such a Drug Inspector can operate and exercise his powers, and the same should not be left to conjectures and surmises of the public.
Bombay High Court
The State Of Maharashtra vs Shri R.A. Chandawarkar & Other on 18 February, 1998
Equivalent citations: 1999 (5) BomCR 519, 1999 BomCR Cri, (1999) 3 BOMLR 394, 1999 CriLJ 4449, 1999 (2) MhLj 650