Means and Includes-the meaning of

In P.Kasilingam v. P.S.G.College of Technology, reported in AIR 1995 SC 1395, the Apex Court observed that:

It has been urged that in Rule 2(b) the expression “means and includes” has been used which indicates that the definition is inclusive in nature and also covers categories which are not expressly mentioned therein. We are unable to agree. A particular expression is often defined by the Legislature by using the word ‘means’ or the word ‘includes’. Sometimes the words ‘means and includes’ are used. The use of the word ‘means’ indicates that “definition is a hard and fast definition, and no other meaning can be assigned to the expression than is put down in definition.” (See : Gough v. Gough, (1891) 2 QB 665; Punjab Land Development and Reclamation Corpn. Ltd. v. Presiding Officer, Labour Court, (1990) 3 SCC 682, at p.717). The word ‘includes’ when used, enlarges the meaning of the expression defined so as to comprehend not only such things as they signify according to their natural import but also those things which the clause declares that they shall include. The words ‘means and includes’, on the other hand, indicate “an exhaustive explanation of the meaning which, for the purposes of the Act, must invariably be attached to these words or expressions.” (See : Dilworth v. Commissioner of Stamps, 1899 AC 99 at pp. 105-106 (Lord Watson); Mahalakshmi Oil Mills v. State of Andhra Pradesh, (1989) 1 SCC 164, at p. 169 : (AIR 1989 SC 335 at p. 339). The use of the words ‘means and includes’ in Rule 2(b) would, therefore, suggest that the definition of “college” is intended to be exhaustive and not extensive and would cover only the educational institutions falling in the categories specified in Rule 2(b) and other educational institutions are not comprehended.”

(vi) In Bharat Co-operative Bank (Mumbai) Ltd., v. Coop. Bank Employees Union, reported in AIR 2007 SC 2320, the Apex Court observed as follows:

“On the other hand, when the word “includes” is used in the definition, the legislature does not intend to restrict the definition; makes the definition enumerative but not exhaustive. That is to say, the term defined will retain its ordinary meaning but its scope would be extended to bring within it matters, which in its ordinary meaning may or may not comprise. Therefore, the use of the word “means” followed by the word “includes” in Section 2(bb) of the ID Act is clearly indicative of the legislative intent to make the definition exhaustive and would cover only those banking companies which fall within the purview of the definition and no other.”

(vii) In Ramanlal Bhailal Patel v. State of Gujarat reported in AIR 2008 SC 1246, the Apex Court has observed that in such a case, the use of word ‘includes’ indicates an intention to enlarge the meaning of the word used in the Statute.

Torture means

Universal Declaration of Human Rights 

The Declaration defines torture as follows:

“. .  torture means any act by which

  • severe pain or suffering,
  • whether physical or mental,

is intentionally inflicted by or at the instigation of a public official

on a person for such purposes as obtaining from him or third person information or confession, punishing him for an act he has committed or is suspected of having committed, or intimidating him or other persons.

It does not include pain or suffering arising only from, inherent in or incidental to, lawful sanctions to the extent consistent with the Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners.”

International Law- definition

What is International Law

International law defines the legal responsibilities of States in their conduct with each other, and their treatment of individuals within State boundaries. International law encompasses a wide range of issues of international concern, such as-

  1. human rights,
  2. disarmament,
  3. international crime,
  4. refugees,
  5. migration,
  6. problems of nationality,
  7. the treatment of prisoners,
  8. the use of force,
  9. and the conduct of war,

among others. It also regulates the global commons, such as-

  1. the environment and sustainable development,
  2. international waters,
  3. outer space,
  4. global communications and
  5. world trade.

The International Law Commission was established by the General Assembly, in 1947, to undertake the mandate of the Assembly, under article 13 (1) (a) of the Charter of the United Nations to “initiate studies and make recommendations for the purpose of … encouraging the progressive development of international law and its codification”.

Under article 20 of its Statute, the Commission is required to prepare drafts in the form of articles and to submit them to the General Assembly together with a commentary containing an adequate presentation of precedents and other relevant data, including treaties, judicial decisions, and doctrine.

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Satyagraha: the meaning of

Hidayatullah C. J. in Dr. Ram Manohar Lohia Vs. State of Bihar and Others,

The last ground is based on “Mass Satyagraha”. The term Satyagraha has been defined in Webster’s “Twentieth Century Dictionary” (Unabridged Second Edition) as “lit grasping for truth; sans. Satya, truth and graphs, grasping the political doctrine of Mohandas K. Gandhi which favoured passive resistance and non-co-operation in opposing British Rule in India. “Mere passive resistance in the line preached by Gandhi-cannot be a ground for detention under the head “public order” or “supply and services”. We have clearlv set forth the law touching satyagraha in Civil Rule Nos. 47. 48, 49. 59 and 60 (HC) of 1981 Krishna Barua v. District Magistrate where inter alia, we observed: “However the detention law should not be allowed to be taken by their smooth handle to subjugate legitimate and demoratic common will which do not affect the supplies and services essential to the community. The extraordinary law should not be a pretext or pretence to handle ordinary or run of the mill incidents.”

Dependant means

Definition of ‘dependant’ as provided in Section 2(1)(d) of Act, 1923, which is reproduced herein below:-

(d) “dependant” means any of the following relatives of a deceased (employee), namely-

(1) a widow, a minor [legitimate or adopted] son, an unmarried [legitimate or adopted] daughter, or a widowed mother; and

(2) if wholly dependent on the earnings of the [employee] at the time of his death, a son of a daughter who has attained the age of the 18 years and who is infirm:

(3) if wholly or in part dependent on the earnings of the [employee] at the time of his death-

(a) a widower.

(b) a parent other than a widowed mother.

(c) a minor illegitimate son, an unmarried illegitimate daughter or a daughter [legitimate or illegitimate or adopted] if married and a minor or if widowed and a minor.

(d) a minor brother or an unmarried sister or a widowed sister if a minor.

(e) a widowed daughter-in-law.

(f) a minor child of a pre-deceased son.

(g) a minor child of a pre-deceased daughter where no parent of the child is alive, or

(h) a paternal grandparent if no parent of the [employee] is alive;

Workmens Compensation Act, 1923 – Section 2(1)(d)


Article 31, like Art, 19 (1) (f), is concerned with “property.” Both the Articles are in the same chapter and deal with fundamental rights. Therefore, it is reasonable to say that the word “property” must be given the same meaning in construing those two articles., What, then, is the meaning of the word “property?” It may mean either the bundle of rights which the owner has over or in respect of a thing, tangible or intangible, or it may mean the thing itself over or in respect of which the owner may exercise those rights. It is quite clear that the Ordinance or the Act has not deprived the share-holder of his share itself. The share still belongs to the shareholder. He is still entitled to the dividend that may be declared. He can deal with or dispose of the share as he pleases. The learned Attorney-General contends that even if the other meaning of the word “property” is adopted, the share-holder has not been deprived of his “property” understood in that sense, that is to say he has not been deprived of the entire bundle of rights which put together constitute his “property.” According to him the “property” of the share-holder, besides and apart from his right to elect directors, to pass resolutions giving directions to the directors and to present a winding up petition, consists in his right to participate in the dividends declared on the profits made by the working of the Company and, in case of winding up, to participate in the surplus that may be left after meeting the winding up expenses and paying the creditors. Those last mentioned rights, he points out, have not been touched at all and the shareholder can yet deal with or dispose of his shares as he pleases and is still entitled to dividends if and when declared. Therefore, concludes the learned Attorney-General, the share- holder cannot complain that he has been deprived of his “property,’’ for the totality of his rights has not been taken away. The argument thus formulated appears to me to be some what too wide, for it will then permit the Legislature to authorise the State to acquire or take possession, without any compensation, of almost the entire rights of the owner leaving to him only a few subsidiary rights. This result could-not, in my opinion, have been intended by our constitution. As said by Rich J, in the Minister for State for the Army v. Dalziel, (1943-44) 68 C.L.R. 261, While dealing with S. 51 (XXXI) of the Australian constitution :

“Property, in relation to land, is a bundle of rights exercisable with respect to the land. The tenant of an unencumbered estate in fee simple in possession has the largest possible bundle. But there is nothing in the placitum to suggest that the Legislature was intended to be at liberty to free itself from the restrictive provisions of the placitum by taking care to seize something short of the whole bundle owned by the person whom it is expropriating.”

The learned Judge then concluded as follows at page 286:

“It would, in my opinion, be wholly inconsistent with the language of the placitum to hold that whilst preventing, the Legislature from authorising the acquisition of a citizen’s full title except upon just terms, it leaves it open to the Legislature to seize possession and enjoy the full fruits of possession indefinitely, on any terms it chooses or upon no terms at all”

Police power

We are familiar with the expression “police power” which is in vogue in the United States of America. ‘This expression simply denotes that in special cases the State can step in where its intervention seems necessary and impose special burdens for general benefit. As one of the Judges has pointed out,

“the regulations may press with more or less weight. upon one than upon another, but they are designed not to impose unequal or unnecessary restrictions upon anyone, but to promote, with as little individual inconvenience as possible, the general good.” (Per. Field J. in Barbier v. Connolly; 113 U. S. 27).

It need not be emphasised that the principles underlying what is known as police power in the United States of America are not peculiar to that country, but are recognised in every modern civilized State. Professor Willis dealing with the question of classification in exercise of police power makes the following observations:

“There is no rule for determining when classification for the police power is reasonable. It is a matter for judicial determination, but in determining the question of reasonableness the Courts must find some economic political or other social interest to be secured, and some relation of the classification to the objects sought to be accomplished. In doing this the Courts may consider matters of common knowledge, matters of common report, the history of the times, and to sustain it they will assume every state of facts which can be conceived of as existing at the time of legislation. The fact that only one person or one object or one business or one locality is affected is not proof of denial of the equal protection of the laws. For such proof it must be shown that there is no reasonable basis for the classification, (Page 580 of “constitutional Law”, 1st Edition, by Prof. Willis)”.

Right to sue means

The statute of Limitation was intended to provide a time limit for all suits conceivable. Section 3 of the Limitation Act provides that a suit, appeal or application instituted after the prescribed “period of limitation” must subject to the provisions of Section 4 to 24 be dismissed although limitation has not been set. up as a defence. Section 2(j) defines the expression’ ‘period of limitation” to mean the period of limitation prescribed in the Schedule for suit, appeal or application. Section 2(j) also defines,’ ‘prescribed period” to mean the period of limitation computed in accordance with the provisions of the Act. The Court’s function on the presentation of plaint is simply to examine whether, on the assumed facts, the plaintiff is within time. The Court has to find out when the “right to sue” accrued to the plaintiff. If a suit is not covered by any of the specific articles prescribing & period of limitation, it must fall within the residuary article. The purpose of the residuary article is to provide for cases which could not be covered by any other provision in the Limitation Act. The residuary article is applicable to every variety of suits not otherwise provided for. Article 113 (corresponding to Article 120 of the Act 1908) is a residuary article for cases not covered by any other provisions in the Act. It prescribes a period of three years when the right to sue accrues. Under Article 120 it was six years which has been reduced to three years under Article 113. According to the third column in Article 113, time commences to run when the right to sue accrues.

The words “right to sue” ordinarily mean the right to seek relief by means of legal proceedings. Generally, the right to sue accrues only when the cause of action arises, that is, the right to prosecute to obtain relief by legal means. The suit must be instituted when the right asserted in the suit is infringed or when there is a clear and unequivocal threat to infringe that right by the defendant against whom the suit is instituted (See: (i) AIR 1930 270 (Privy Council) and (ii) Gannon Dunkerley and Co., Ltd. Vs. Union of India (UOI),


The term `employment’ used in Article 319 of the Constitution fell for consideration before the Hon’ble Full Bench of Rajasthan High Court in Har Govind Pant’s case (supra). The observations made in para 74, 75, relevant part of 76, 89 and 91, read as under:-

“74. Now the term ’employment’ postulates relationship of master and servant or subordination of the employee to the master. Seemingly the term ‘Employment’ occurring in Article 319 is of wider amplitude and of general import. It has to be construed in the light of general purpose and context and setting in which it finds place in the Constitution. The question whether conditions of employment can be regarded falling within the relationship of master and servant is whether the alleged employee is under the control and bound to obey the directions of the alleged master. In Yewons v. Nokos, (1880) 6 QBD 330, Bramwell J. denned a servant as one who is subject to the command of his master, as to the manner in which he should do his work. See also Halsbury’s Laws of England, 3rd Edition, Volume 25, Page 447, wherein it has been observed that the relationship of master and servant imports the existence of power in the employer not only to direct what the servant is to do but also the manner in which the work is to be done.

This dictum has also received the approval of the Supreme Court in Union of India v. Sankalchand Himatmal Sheth, (reported in AIR 1977 SC 2328). In that case Hon’ble Chandrachud J. has observed (at pp. 2344-45);

“In general relationship of master and servant imports the existence of power in the employer not only to direct what work the servant is to do but also the manner in which the work is to be done.”