In the case of Sumitra Devi vs. Sampuran Singh (2011) 3 SCC 556, which has been relied upon by learned Senior Counsel for the Appellant, this Court has held that “it will all depend on the facts of each case whether the presumption of service of notice sent under postal certificate should be drawn. It is true that as observed by the Privy Council in its above referred judgment, the presumption would apply with greater force to letters which are sent by registered post, yet, when facts so justify, such presumption is expected to be drawn even in the case of a letter sent under postal certificate.” Considering the facts and circumstances of that case, this Court held the notice sent under certificate of posting to be sufficient service. In the case of Ranju vs. Rekha Ghosh (2007) 14 SCC 81, this court was considering a case where one month’s notice was to be given to the tenant for eviction. After considering the provisions of the relevant Tenancy Act, Transfer of Property Act and the Bengal General Clauses Act, it was held that “clause (6) provides mere “one month’s notice”; in such event, the said notice can be served in any manner and it cannot be claimed that the same should be served only by registered post with acknowledgement due.” In the facts of that case, it was held that service of notice sent under certificate of posting was sufficient. Similar is the case at hand, where the Act provides for that ‘the landlord has given a notice…’, without specifying the mode of such notice, and in the facts of the present case, notice sent under postal certificate has rightly been held to be proper service. While considering a case of service of notice under the Companies Act, this Court, in the case of V.S. Krishnan vs. Westfort HiTech Hospitals (2008) 3 SCC 363, has held that service of notice sent under certificate of posting would be sufficient where “there are materials to show that notices were sent, the burden is on the addressee to rebut the statutory presumption.”
From the perusal of the aforesaid Proviso to the Section 21(1) (b) of Uttar Pradesh (Regulation of Letting, Rent and Eviction) Act, 1972, it is clear that no particular mode of giving notice by the landlord to the tenant has been provided for, meaning thereby that the same could be given orally or in writing; and if in writing, it is not necessary that it should be sent only by registered post. What is required is that “the landlord has given a notice in that behalf to the tenant”. Mohd. Asif Naseer v. West Watch Company, Civil Appeal No. 2375 of 2020 (Arising Out of SLP (C) No. 29649 of 2016).
A news item has the potentiality of bringing doomsday for an individual. The Editor controls the selection of the matter that is published. Therefore, he has to keep a careful eye on the selection. Blue-pencilling of news articles by anyone other than the Editor is not welcome in a democratic polity. Editors have to take responsibility of everything they publish and to maintain the integrity of published record. It is apt to remind the answer of the Editor of “The Scotsman”, a Scottish Newspaper. When asked what it was like to run a national newspaper, the Editor answered “Run a newspaper! I run a country”. It may be an exaggeration but it does reflect the well-known fact that it can cause far-reaching consequences in an individual and country’s life.
From the scheme of the Press and Registration of Books Act, 1867 it is evident that it is the Editor who controls the selection of the matter that is published in a newspaper. Further, every copy of the newspaper is required to contain the names of the owner and the Editor and once the name of the Editor is shown, he shall be held responsible in any civil and criminal proceeding. Further, in view of the interpretation clause, the presumption would be that he was the person who controlled the selection of the matter that was published in the newspaper. The presumption under Section 7 of the Act is a rebuttable presumption and it would be deemed a sufficient evidence unless the contrary is proved. It was held in K.M. Mathew v. K.A. Abraham, (2002) 6 SCC 670 as under:
“The provisions contained in the Act clearly go to show that there could be a presumption against the Editor whose name is printed in the newspaper to the effect that he is the Editor of such publication and that he is responsible for selecting the matter for publication. Though, a similar presumption cannot be drawn against the Chief Editor, Resident Editor or Managing Editor, nevertheless, the complainant can still allege and prove that they had knowledge and they were responsible for the publication of the defamatory news item. Even the presumption under Section 7 is a rebuttable presumption and the same could be proved otherwise. That by itself indicates that somebody other than Editor can also be held responsible for selecting the matter for publication in a newspaper.”Gambhirsinh R. Dekare v. FalgunbhaiChimanbhai Patel, (2013) 3 SCC 697.
In a recent judgment of the Allahabad High Court (Phool Chand v. Joint Director of Consolidation),it was held as under:
“The presumption under the Section is that if the deed is signed by the person giving and the person taking in adoption the provision has been complied with. It is the person challenging the factum of adoption who has to disprove the adoption. A mere plea that the deed is not genuine is not sufficient to rebut the presumption under Section 16 of the Act. Under such circumstance, the plea that the requirements of Section 11 of the Act had not been satisfied are not made out and hence loose all significance with the registration of the deed of adoption.”