Present: Schneider J.
STEWART v. PACKIR SAIBO.
P. C. Badulla—6,110.
Motor by-law—Rash and negligent driving—Conviction of driver—
Charge against owner—Vehicles Ordinance, No. 4 of 1916, s. 22.
Where, after the conviction of the driver of a motor car fornegligent driving, the owner, who was not present at the time,was charged with the same offence under by-law 32 framed undersection 22 (1) (&) of the Vehicles Ordinance.
Held, that the by-law was ultra vires in so far as it seeks to makethe owner liable equally with the driver for an offence committedby the driver in the absence of the owner.
PPLICATION by the Attorney-General to revise the proceed-
ings in this case in which the accused, the owner of a motorcar, the driver of which was charged and convicted under by-law 32framed under section 22 of the Vehicles Ordinance with havingdriven the car in a negligent manner, was himself charged with thesame offence under the same provisions of the law, although hewas not present at the time. The accused pleaded guilty, and wasfined Re. 1.
J. E. M. Obeyesekere, (7.(7., in support.
( 26 )
Stewart v.Packir Saibo
June 6, 1925. Schneider J.—
This is an appeal by the Attorney-General. The accused is theowner of a motor car, the driver of which was charged and convictedunder by-law 32 of the by-laws framed under section 22 of theVehicles Ordinance, No. 4 of 1916,1 with having driven his car in anegligent manner. The accused was not in the car at the time, butwhen he was charged in this case with the same offence under thesame provision of the law he pleaded guilty, and was sentencedto pay a fine of Re. 1. As no appeal was competent from thissentence, the proceedings are brought up in revision. The Attorney-General’s submission is that the reference to “ owner ” in the by-lawin question is ultra vires. I would uphold this submission. Theby-law in question could only have been framed under section 22
(h) which enacts that “ By-laws may give such other directionswith regard to the driving and management of such vehicles asmay appear necessary or conducive to the public safety and con-venience.” Now, an owner who was not in the vehicle at the timeof the commission of the offence by the driver cannot be regardedas being concerned in any way with the driving and management.Therefore this by-law is ultra vires in so far as it seeks to make theowner liable equally with the driver for an offence committed bythe driver in the absence of the owner.
1 accordingly set aside the conviction and acquit the accused.
Ceylon Government Gazette No. 6,840 of December 15,1916.