The golden rule of statutory interpretation

The golden rule of statutory interpretation
The golden rule of statutory interpretation may be applied where an application of the literal rule would lead to an absurdity
The golden rule is that the words of a statute must prima facie be given their ordinary meaning. It is yet another rule of construction that when the words of the statute are clear, plain and unambiguous, then the courts are bound to give effect to that meaning, irrespective of the consequences.
CASE
Lee v.Knapp
FACTS
• The defendant had driven a vehicle round the block in the City in which his company‘s office stood for the particular purpose of demonstrating to his own van driver, he being the managing director of a clothing manufacturing company, that a new two-ton van that the company had bought was really quite easy to handle; the driver had been doubtful about that.
ISSUES
• The question of law is whether or not by leaving the van when he did, and so soon as he did, and going away himself to his company‘s offices, the defendant committed a breach of section 77 (1) of the Road Traffic Act, 1960, which provides, so far as material, that if in any case owing to the presence of a motor vehicle on a road an accident occurs whereby damage is caused to a vehicle other than that motor vehicle, the driver of the motor vehicle shall stop and, if required so to do by any person having reasonable ground for so requiring, give his name and address and also the name and address of the owner and the identification marks of the vehicle.

JUDGEMENT
Applying the golden rule court held that requirement of the section had not been followed by the driver as he had not stopped for a reasonable period requiring interested persons to make necessary inquires from him about the accident

Conclusion
• In this case, interpretation of the world ‘stop’ was involved. Under section 77(1) of the road traffic Act, 1960 a driver causing an accident shall stop after the accident. In this case, the driver stopped for a moment after causing an accident and then moved away. Applying the golden rule the Court held that requirement of the section had not been followed by the driver as he had not stopped for a reasonable time of period Requiring interested persons to make necessary inquiries for him about the accident
Case
G.Narayanaswami V. Pannersevan
Issues
Whether the first respondent was not qualified to stand for the election to the Graduates’constituency? ”
Legal provision
Article 168 of our Constitution shows that the State Legislatures in nine States in India, including Madras, were to consist of two Houses: the Legislative Assembly and the Legislative Council.
Article 170 lays down that the Legislative Assembly of each State shall consist of members chosen by direct election from territorial constituencies in the State, in such manner as the Parliament may by law determine
Judgement
After considering all the relevant constitutional and statutory provisions relating to the qualifications of a candidate for election from the Graduates constituency of the Legislative Council of the Madras State, that the appellant possesses all the qualifications laid down for such a candidate. Therefore, we allow this appeal, set aside the Judgment and Order of the Madras High Court, and dismiss the respondent‘s election petition.
WRITTEN BY
RAGHAV JAGGA

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