Ardeshir H. Bhiwandiwala Vs. The State
of Bombay  INSC 25 (27 January 1961)
DAYAL, RAGHUBAR DAYAL, RAGHUBAR IMAM, SYED
JAFFER KAPUR, J.L.
GUPTA, K.C. DAS AYYANGAR, N. RAJAGOPALA
CITATION: 1962 AIR 29 1962 SCR (3) 592
CITATOR INFO :
R 1967 SC1364 (5) RF 1974 SC 759 (23) RF 1987
SC1023 (3) D 1988 SC 113 (5)
Factory-Salt Works, whether a
factory-Premises, if include -open land-Manufacturing Process-Conversion of sea
water into salt-Factories Act, 1948 (LXIII of 1948), ss. 2(k) and (m), 92.
The appellant was convicted of an offence
under s. 92 of the Factories Act, 1948, for working a salt works without
obtaining a licence. The salt works extended over an area of about 250 acres'
The only buildings on this land were temporary shelters for the resident labour
and for an office ; at some places ,there where pucca platforms for fixing the
water pump where 593 required to pump water from the sea. The appellant contended
(i) that the salt works was not a factory as defined in s. 2(m) of the Act,
(ii) that the word " premises " in the definition of factory did not
include open land, and (iii) that in converting sea water into salt the
appellant was not carrying on any manufacturing process as defined in s. 2(k).
Held, that the salt works was a factory
within the definition given in the Act and that the appellant was rightly
convicted for working it without a licence. The word " premises " is
a generic term meaning open land or land with buildings or buildings alone; the
salt works came within the expression "premises" in the definition of
the word " factory ". The extraction of salt from sea water was not
due merely to natural forces but was due to human efforts aided by natural
forces. The process of conversion of sea water into salt was a "
manufacturing process " as defined in cl. (k) of s. 2, inasmuch as salt
was manufactured from sea water by a process of treatment and adaptation. By
this process sea water, a non-commercial article, was converted into a
different thing salt, a commercial article.
Kent v. Astley, L.R. (1869) 5 Q. B. 19,
Redgrave v. Lee, (1874) 9 Q. B. 363 and Nash v. Hollinshead,  1 K.B.
Sedgwick v. Watney, Combe, Reid & Co.
Ltd.  A.C. 446, Grove v. Lloyds British Testing Co. Ltd.  A.C. 466,
Kaye v. Burrows & Ors. and Hines v. Eastern Counties Farmers' Co-operative
Association Ltd.  A.C. 477, The State of Kerala v. V. M. Patel, Cr. App. NO.
42 of 1959, decided on 12-10-1960, In re: Chinniah, Manager, Sangu Soap Works,
A.I.R. 1957 Mad. 755. Paterson v. Hunt (1909) 101 L.T.R. 571, Law v. Graham,
 2 K.B. 327, Hoare v.
Truman, Hanbury, Buxton & CO. (1902) 86
L.T.R. 417, and McNicol v. Pinch,  2 K.B. 352, referred to.
CRIMINAL APPELLATE JURISDICTION: Criminal
Appeal No. 32 of 1956.
Appeal from the judgment and order dated
October 7 and 10, 1955, of the Bombay High Court in Criminal Appeal No. 817 of
Porus A. Mehta, R. Ganapathy Iyer and G.
Gopalakrishnan, for the appellant.
N. S. Bindra, R. H. Dhebar and T. M. Sen, for
1961. January 27. The Judgment of the Court
was delivered by RAGHUBAR DAYAL, J.-This is an appeal by special Rag leave by
Ardeshir H. Bhiwandiwala against the order of the High Court of Bombay allowing
an appeal 594 by the State against the acquittal of the appellant of an offence
under s. 92 of the Factories Act, 1948 (Act LXIII of 1948), hereinafter called
the Act, for his working the Wadia Mahal Salt Works situate at Wadala, Bombay,
without obtaining a licence under s. 6 of the said Act read with r. 4 of the
rules framed under the Act.
The main question for determination in this
appeal is whether these Salt Works come within the definition of the word
" factory " under cl. (m) of s. 2 of the Act. The answer to this
question depends on the meaning of the word " premises " in the
definition of the word "factory " and on the determination whether
what is done at this Salt Works in connection with the conversion of sea water
into crystals of salt comes within the definition of the expression "
manufacturing process " in cl. (k) of s. 2 of the Act.
The Salt Works extend over an area of about
two hundred and fifty acres. Some of the other salt works, however, have even
larger areas. The only buildings on this land consist of temporary shelters
constructed for the resident labour and for an office. At a few places, pucca
platforms exist for fixing the water pump when required to pump water from the
sea. When not required, this pump is kept in the office. With the exception of
the constructions already mentioned, the entire area of the Salt Works is open.
On the sea side, it has bunds in order to prevent sea water flooding the salt
Clause (m) of s. 2 of the Act reads:
factory' means any premises including the
precincts thereof(i) whereon ten or more workers are working, or were working
on any day of the preceding twelve months, and in any part of which a
manufacturing process is being carried on with the aid of power, or is
ordinarily so carried on, or (ii) whereon twenty or more workers are working,
or were working on any day of the preceding twelve months, and in any part of
which a manufacturing process is being carried on without the aid of power, or
is ordinarily so carried on, 595 but does not include a mine subject to the
operation of the Mines Act, 1952, or a railway running shed." The relevant
portion of the definition of " manufacturing process " in cl. (k) of
s. 2, reads :
" manufacturing process' means any
process for(i) making, altering, repairing, ornamenting, finishing, packing,
oiling, washing, cleaning, breaking up, demolishing, or otherwise treating or
adapting, any article or substance with a view to its use, sale, transport,
delivery or disposal; or (ii) pumping oil, water or sewage;
It is contended for the appellant that the
expression "premises" in the definition of the word
"factory" means " buildings " and that "mere open land
" is not covered by the word " premises " and as there are no
buildings except temporary sheds on the Salt Works, the Salt Works cannot be
said to be a " factory ". We do not agree with this contention. The
word "premises " has now come to refer to either land or buildings or
to both, depending on the context. The meanings of the word " premises
" in various lexicons and dictionaries are given below:
a) Wharton's Law Lexicon:
" Premises " is often used as
meaning " land or houses ".
(b) Cochran's Law Lexicon, IV Edition: "
Premises " means " houses or lands (c) Black, H.C., Law Dictionary,
" Premises " as used in the estates
means(i) lands and tenements; an estate; land and buildings thereon; the
subject-matter of the conveyance;
(ii) a distinct and definite locality and may
mean a room, especially building or other definite area;
(d) Earl Jowitt, Dictionary of English
Law:" Premises............ from this use of the word, " premises
" has gradually acquired the popular sense of land or buildings.
Originally, it was only used in this sense by
laymen, and it was never so used in well-drawn instruments, but it is now 596
frequently found in instruments and in Acts of Parliament as meaning land or
houses, e.g., the Public Health Act, 1875, s. 4, where "premises"
includes messuages, buildings, lands, easements, tenements and here ditaments
of any tenure......
(e) Ballentine, J.A., Law Dictionary with
Pronunciation, II Edition:
" Premises "-as applied to land, Webster's
New International Dictionary defines the word as follows: The property conveyed
in a deed;
hence, in general, a piece of land or, real
estate ; sometimes, especially in fire insurance papers, a building or
buildings on land; the premises insured.
It is therefore clear that the word "
premises " is a; generic term meaning open land or land with buildings or
The expression" premises including
precincts" it has been urged, clearly indicates that in the context of the
definition of the word " factory ", premises meant only buildings as
buildings alone can have precints and there can be no precincts of any open
land. This expression " premises including precincts" does not
necessarily mean that the premises must always have precincts. Even buildings
need not have any precincts. The word " including " is not a term
restricting the meaning of the word " premises " but is a term which
enlarges the scope of the word " premises ".
We are therefore of opinion that even this
contention is not sound and does not lead to the only conclusion that the word
" premises " must be restricted to mean buildings and be not taken to
cover open land as well.
Sub-cl. (bb) of el. (1) of s. 7 of the Act
requires the occupier of a factory to mention in the written notice to be sent
to the Chief Inspector before his occupying or using any premises as a factory,
the name and address of the owner of the premises or building including the
precincts thereof referred to in s. 93. This sufficiently indicates that the
word " premises " is not restricted in scope to buildings alone. of
course, the building referred to in this clause is the 597 building which is
referred to in s. 93 of the Act.
Sub-s. (1) of s. 93 reads:
" Where in any premises separate
buildings are leased to different occupier,% for use as separate factories, the
owner of the premises shall be responsible for the provision and maintenance of
common facilities and services, such as approach roads, drainage, water supply,
lighting and sanitation." This again makes it clear that " premises
" refer to an entire area which may have within it several separate
Further, s. 85 empowers the State Government
to declare that all or any of the provisions of the Act shall apply to any
place wherein a manufacturing 'process is carried on with or without the aid of
power or is so ordinarily carried on notwithstanding certain matters mentioned
in the section.
The word " place" is again a
general word which is applicable to both open land and to buildings and its use
in this section indicates that the Act can be applied to works carrying on a
manufacturing process on open land.
There is thus internal evidence in the Act
itself to show that the word " premises " is not to be confined in
its meaning to buildings alone.
The High Court has rightly pointed out that
the Act is for the welfare of the workers and deals with matters connected with
the health, safety, welfare, working hours of the workers, employment of young
persons and leave to be granted to workers and that, therefore, the legislature
could not have intended to discriminate between the workers who are engaged in
a manufacturing process in a building and those who 'are engaged in such a
process on open land.
It is contended for the appellant that the
various provisions of the Act cannot be applicable to salt works where the
process of converting sea water into salt is carried on in the open. This is
true as regards some of the provisions, but then there is nothing in the Act
which makes it uniformly compulsory for every occupier of a factory to comply
with every requirement of the Act, An occupier is to comply 598 with such
provisions of the Act which apply to the factory he is working. It is admitted
that the workers have at times to work at night; that some women workers are
employed; that workers have to take rest; that they have to take food at about
mid-day; that they do require drinking water and that first-aid 'things are
kept in the office room. It may be that the occupier has made adequate arrangements
for such purposes but this does not mean that the provisions of the Act
concerning such amenities shall not be applicable to salt works. Further, the
Act has sufficient provisions empowering the State to exempt the occupiers from
complying with certain I provisions as a special case.
Section 6 of the Act empowers the State
Government to make rules requiring the previous permission in writing of the
State Government or the Chief Inspector to be obtained for the site on which
the factory is to be situated and for the construction or extension of any
factory or class or description of factories. This provision of the Act
together with the relevant rules framed in that connection, does not mean that
every factory must have a building and that necessary permission for its
construction or extension is to be obtained. Of course, every factory must have
a site and previous permission of the State Government or the Chief Inspector
may be necessary before the site is to be used for the purposes of a factory.
Further, there is nothing in the definition
of manufacturing process " which would make it necessary that this process
be carried on in a building. This definition really deals with the nature of
the work done and not with where that work is to be done. The work can be done
both in the building or in the open.
Lastly, learned counsel for the appellant
relied on certain cases which are detailed below:
In Kent v. Astley (1) it was held that a
slate quarry, a large open space extending over an area of 400 acres, the works
of which were carried on in the open (1) (1869) L.R. 5 Q.B. 19.
599 air, the only buildings being sheds, was
not a "factory" within the meaning of 30 & 31 Viet. c. 103
(Factory Acts Extension Act, 1867), s. 3, sub-s. 7. Cockburn, C.J., said at
" Therefore, if this work had been
carried on within a building, I think that it would have fallen within the
scope of the statute, and that the justices' ought to have convicted..........
and I do not think that in using the word I premises' the legislature intended
to include sheds erected in the quarry merely as a protection against the
weather; they are only accessories to the quarry and the quarrying processes;
and the legislature has not yet declared that open air works shall be within
the scope of the Factory Acts...... But, except in cases which have been
specially provided for, it has not as yet included works carried on in the open
air, because they are less exposed to the evils incident to manufactures
carried on in buildings." Mellor, J., said at page 24:
" The legislature has from time to time
extended the Factory Acts to different trades and businesses. Numerous slate
quarries exist, and a large number of persons are employed in them: if the
legislature intended to apply the Factory Acts to them, it would have been done
by special enactment." Hannen, J., said:
" I agree with my Brother Mellor, that
if the legislature had intended to apply the Factory Acts to quarries, they
would have been expressly mentioned, and this omission leads strongly to the
conclusion that it was not intended to interfere with persons employed in
quarries." It is not clear from these observations alone why the slate
quarries where work was carried on in the open air and not in building, was not
held to be "a factory" on that account.
This is, however, apparent when one considers
that the Factory Act of 1833 was enacted to regulate the labour of children and
young persons in the mills and factories of the United Kingdom and applied only
to cotton, woollen, worsted, hemp, flax, tow, linen or silk mill or factory
wherein 77 600 steam or water or any other mechanical power was used to propel
or work the machinery in such mill or factory. The other subsequent Acts simply
extended the scope of the Factory Act of 1833. The Act of 1844 was to amend the
law relating to labour in ,,factories and provided by s. LXXIII that "the
Factory Act as amended by this Act and this Act " would be construed
together as one Act. The relevant portion of the definition of the word "
factory " in this Act reads:
"The word I factory' notwithstanding any
Provision or Exemption in the Factory Act shall be taken to mean all Buildings
and Premises situated within any part of the United Kingdom of Great Britain
and Ireland wherein or within the, Close or Curtilage of which Steam, Water, or
any other mechanical Power shall be used to move or work any Machinery employed
in preparing, manufacturing, or finishing, or in any Process incident to the
Manufacture of Cotton., Wool, Hair, Silk, Flax, Hemp, Jute, or Tow, either
separately or mixed together, or mixed with any other Material or any Fabric
made thereof." This indicates that is premises " need not consist of
buildings and that they mean something different from buildings The Act of 1850
was for the regulation of the employment of children in factories and provided
that that Act would be construed together with the previous Acts as one Act.
There is nothing particular in the Factory
Act of 1856 to refer to.
The Act of 1860 dealt with the employment of
women, young persons and children in bleaching works and dyeing works under the
regulations of the Factories Act; s. VII, which defines the words "
Bleaching Works " and " Dyeing Works " reads, with regard to its
relevant portion, thus:
" In the Construction of this Act the
words Bleaching Works' and Dyeing Works' shall be understood respectively to
mean any Building.
Buildings, or Premises in which Females,
Young 601 Persons and Children, or any of them, are employed, and in One or
more of which Buildings or Premises any Process previous to packing is carried
on... " Section IX gives the exemptions and its relevant portion is:
" Nothing in this Act contained shall
extend or apply to ...
or to any Premises, either open, in closed,'
or covered, used or to be used bona fide exclusively for the purposes of
This makes it clear that " Premises
" can consist of open areas.
The 1867 Act is described as " Factory
Acts Extension Act, 1867 ", and according to s. 3, " factory means:
7. Any premises, whether adjoining or
separate, in the same occupation, situate in the same City, Town, Parish, or
Place, and constituting One Trade Establishment, in, on or within the Precincts
of which Fifty or more Persons are employed in any manufacturing Process;
It is clear from the series of legislation up to the decision in Kent's case
that the Parliament specifically enacted with respect to the places which were
to be controlled by the respective Factory Acts and that it was therefore that
it was said that if the legislature had intended to apply the Factory Act to
the slate quarries, it would have extended the Act to them. As the various
Factories and Mills which were covered by the Factory Act of 1833 were such
which could function only in buildings, the conception grew that nothing would
come within the expression " factory " unless it had a building and
unless the Factory Act definitely provided for the application of the Act to
The next case relied on is Redgrave v. Lee (2
). The earlier decision was just followed in this.
The next case cited for the appellant is Nash
v. Hollin shead (3). This case too is distinguishable as the farm on which the
workman was employed to drive a movable steam engine for the purpose of working
a (1) (1869) L.R. 5 Q.B. 19. (2) (1874) 9 Q.B. 363.
(3)  1 K.B. 700.
602 mill for grinding meal intended to be
used for food for stock on the farm and not for sale, was held to be not a
factory in view of the fact that the meal which was ground was not intended for
the purpose of sale but was meant only for feeding the stock from the farm. It
was also observed that the consequences of holding a farm to be a factory
" would really produce a ludicrous result ". It is on the basis of
this observation that the trial Court, in the present case, held that the
application of the provisions of the Act to the Salt Works would lead to "
ludicrous results ". We have already stated that such is not the result of
the application of the relevant provisions of the Factories Act to the Salt
There is nothing useful for the present case,
for our purpose, in Weston v. London County Council (1) and in Wood v. London
County Council (2).
It may now be mentioned that the Factories
Act, 1937 (I Edw.
8 & 1 Geo. 6, c. 67) specifically
provides in sub-s. (7) of s. 151 that " premises shall not be excluded
from the definition of a factory by reason only that they are open air premises
". Various clauses of sub-s. (1) of s. 151 define " factory " to
mean " any premises in which certain type of work is carried on by way of
trade or for purposes of gain. " These provisions support the
interpretation we are putting on the word " premises " in cl. (m) of
s. 2 of the Act.
We therefore hold that the Salt Works would
come within the meaning of the expression " premises " in the
definition of the word " factory " and would be a factory if the work
carried on there comes within the definition of " manufacturing process
The second contention for the appellant is
that the process of converting sea water into salt does not amount to "
'manufacturing process " as no process for making, altering, packing,
cleaning or otherwise treating or adapting any article or substance with a view
to its use, sale, transport, delivery or disposal is carried on. It is also urged
that no other process mentioned in cl. (k) of s. 2 is carried on in the Salt
Works, that it is just the force of gravity and the solar energy which (1)
 1 K.B. 608. (2)  2 K.B. 232.
603 do the necessary work for the occupiers
of the Salt Works to convert sea water into salt and that no human agency is
employed in such conversion. This contention found favour with the trial Court.
The High Court, however, did not agree with it and stated:
"In our opinion it is a travesty of
language to say that although 47 workmen are working on these works, salt is
made without the assistance of human agency............ Now, in this case there
is no doubt that the workmen employed on these salt works are dealing with the
sea water in a particular manner and but for the dealing with it in that
manner, salt as made on these works would not be made.
We agree with the High Court that the
conversion of sea water into salt is not due merely to natural forces, but is
due to human efforts aided by natural forces. The sea water in the sea never
becomes salt merely on account of the play of sun's rays on it. The natural
force of gravity is utilised for carrying sea water from the sea to the
reservoirs, thence to the tapavanis and from there to the crystallizing pans
which are specially prepared by thumping the mud and making the layer of tile
ground hard and watertight. The solar energy is utilised in evaporating the
water in the brine. The human agency is employed for other processes carried on
in the Salt Works.
The process of making salt is described in
the letter dated July 12, 1949, included in Exhibit 1, from the President, Salt
Merchants and Shilotires Association, Bombay, to the Secretary, Department of
Industry and Supply, Government of India, New Delhi, thus:
"A salt work mainly consists of an open
marshy area, surrounded by mud embankment, the height of which is above the
highest tide water mark in that locality to prevent inundation. In this
embankment, sluice gates are provided with suitable places to take in and discharge
the sea water and the waste water respectively. The inner enclosed area is
divided into compartments for the storage of sea brine of different densities.
When the salt is formed, it is stored on the platform by the laborers engaged
in the manufacture.
It is then weighed, bagged and 604 carried to
Railway Station or to a port of shipment......
For said production the sea water is taken
into the Reservoirs at high water tide twice during a month. The high tides
take place on about nine or ten days in a month, five days during day time and
four times at night. Some of the labourers are detained for this work but they
are also not required to be present the whole time, when the evaporation is
going on. Once the brine is let into the crystallising beds, its surface is not
to be disturbed for four or five days. After this, the labourer has to be
careful to see that the density does not exceed a certain limit and that the
other kinds of salt contained in the brine are not deposited, thus
contaminating the sodium chloride (common salt) already formed. This they learn
Sifting and storing then begins. The labourer
has also to refill the crystallizing beds with fresh, brine. Thus the labourers
work is intermittent and not continuous for any fixed hours." It is clear
therefore that labourers are employed for (i) admitting sea water to the
reservoirs by working sluice gates, sometimes at night also, or the pump; (ii)
filling crystallizing beds; (iii) watching the density of brine in the crystallizing
beds; (iv) seeing that the density does not exceed certain limits and that
salts other than sodium chloride (common salt) are not formed; (v) scraping and
collecting salt crystals (vi) grading the salt crystals by " sieving
" and (vii) putting salt into gunny bags.
It follows that it is due to human agency,
aided by natural forces, that salt is extracted from sea water. The, processes
carried out in the Salt Works and described above, come within the definition
of " manufacturing process " inasmuch as salt can be said to have
been manufactured from sea water by the process of treatment and adaptation of
sea water into salt. The sea water, a non-commercial article, has been adapted
to salt, a commercial article.
The observations in Sedgwick v. Watney Combe,
Reid & Company, Limited(1) at page 463, support the (1)  A.C. 446,
605 view that the process undergone at the Salt Works is the process of
treatment 'of sea water for the purpose of converting it into salt. The
hereditament, the subject of controversy in the case, was used in connection
with the manufacture of " bottled beer " by the respondent. Brewed
beer, which was not in a drinkable condition, and therefore not saleable as
draught' beer, was brought to the premises in tank wagons and pumped into large
tanks. Carbonic acid gas was put into it. It was then filtered and put into
bottles which were corked and labelled. The bottles were then packed and
removed for delivery. The question for decision was whether the hereditament
was occupied and used for the purpose of distributive wholesale business. In
that connection it was said:
" But the point is whether the treatment
that the beer undergoes in these premises is a mere prelude to distribution. I
am clearly of opinion that it is not. The finished article that is being
prepared for distribution is bottled beer. It undergoes treatment, a treatment
which changes its quality and makes it from an unpotable and unmarketable
article into a potable and marketable one." In the present case, in the Salt
Works, the finished article is " salt ". It does not enter the Salt
Works as " salt ".
It enters as brine which, under the process
carried out, changes its quality, and becomes salt, a marketable article.
The observations in Grove v. Lloyds British
Testing Co. Ltd.(1) at page 467 support the view that the conversion of sea
water into salt amounts to adapting it for sale. It is stated there :
"I think ' adapting for sale' points
clearly to something being done to the article in question which, in some way,
makes it in itself a little different from what it was before." In Kaye v.
Burrows & Others and Hines v. Eastern Counties Farmers' Co operative
Association Ltd. (2) it was said at page 484:
" The test is just as it was in the
bottled beer case. You must look at what is the finished article' (1) 
A.C. 466, (2)  A.C. 477.
606 to be turned out. If that finished
article is only put into the condition of a finished article by the processes
to which it has been subjected in the hered it ament, then the processes will
fall within the expression altering or adaptation for sale'.
In both the cases of the rags and the seeds
the finished article is different from the article in bulk which enters the
hered it ament, and that is, in our opinion, an adaptation for sale." In
The State of Kerala v. V. M. Patel (1) this Court held the treatment of pepper
and ginger to be a " manufacturing process " where the work which was
carried on in the premises of the firm was described thus :" It consisted
of winnowing, cleaning, washing and drying pepper on concrete floor. A similar
process was also being applied to ginger, which was dipped in lime and laid out
to dry in a warehouse on the premises." The case reported as In re:
Chinniah, Manager, Sangu Soap Works (2) is of no help to the appellant as there
nothing definite was held about the process carried out to be a manufacturing
process or not and what was stated was in connection with the word I(
manufacture" in general and not with reference to " manufacturing
process." Similarly the case reported as Paterson v. Hunt is not of much
help. It simply held that mere sorting of rags will not amount to adapting for
sale. In this case reference was made to it being held in Law v. Graham (4)
that washing the bottles before the beer was put into them was not adapting the
beer, or adapting the bottles or adapting the bottled beer for the purpose of
sale and in Hoare v. Truman, Hanbury, Buxton & Co. (5) that it was a case
of adapting for sale when gas was used to force carbonic acid at high pressure
into the beer for charging it with the acid and mixing it and so aerating the
beer. The case is (1) Crl.App. NO. 42 of 1959. decided on October 12, 1960.
(2) A.I.R. 1957 Mad. 755.
(3) (1909) 101 L.T.R. 571.
(4)  2 K.B. 327. (1902) 86 L.T.R. 417.
(5) (1902) 86 L.T.R. 417.
607 distinguishable as sorting of rags
brought about no change in particular rags sorted out. They were just separated
from other things with which they were mixed and therefore the rags were in no
way adapted to some different article.
This cannot be said in connection with the
conversion of sea water into salt.
The decisions in McNicol v. Pinch (1), State
v. Chrestien Mica Industries Ltd. (2) and G. R. Kulkarni v. The State (3) are
of no help in determining the point under consideration as there the word
" manufacture " was interpreted according to the dictionary meaning
and the context. In the present case, we are considering the definition of the
expression " manufacturing process " and no dictionary meaning of the
word " manufacture " and no interpretation of what constitutes "
manufacture " for the purposes of other Acts can be of any guide. It may,
however, be noted that even according to the meaning given to the word "
manufacture ", the conversion of brine into salt would amount to
manufacture of salt as " the essence of making or of manufacturing is that
what is made shall be a different thing from that out of which it is made
"-vide McNicol v. Pinch(4) page 361.
We are therefore of opinion that the process
of converting sea water into salt carried on the appellant's Salt Works comes
within the definition of manufacturing process " in el. (k) of s. 2 of the
Reference was made to the expression of
opinion by the Chief Inspector of Factories in his letter to the Deputy Salt
Commissioner, Bombay, in support of the appellant's contention that salt works
as such do not come within the definition of the word " factory ". It
was stated in this letter that originally salt pans were considered to be amenable
to the Factories Act and as such salt pan occupiers were informed to get the
pans registered and licensed.
However, as some doubt was felt, the question
was reexamined and it had been found that salt pans would not be factories
except where they were equipped with a building used (1)  2 K.B. 352. (2)
 Pat. 660, (3) I.L.R.  M. P. 13.
608 in connection with the manufacture of
salt. The Deputy Commissioner for Salt was not satisfied with this view and in
his reply dated September 13, 1952, stated, after referring to the provisions
of cl. (m) of s. 2 of the Act, that " by premises is meant building and
its adjuncts ". No further correspondence between these authorities has
been brought on the record and we do not know what had been the final view
taken by the authorities in this connection.
Further, such a view expressed by any
authority is of no help in deciding the questions before us.
It may also be mentioned that the
representation made by the President of the Salt Merchants and Shilotires
Association on July 12, 1949, to the Secretary to Government of India,
Department of Industries & Supply, did not raise the contention that the
salt works did not come within the definition of the word " factory "
and merely represented that the provisions of the Act be not applied to the
salt works in view of the matters mentioned in that representation. Even the
reply by the appellant's firm to the Inspector of Factories dated April 9,
1952, did not state that the salt works did not come within the definition of
the word " factory " and simply stated that the provisions of the
Indian Factories Act were considered redundant for which their Bombay Salt
Association had already made a suitable representation to the Government of
India. It was for the first time, in the written statement filed by the
appellant in the trial Court, that it was contended that the Salt Works would
not come within the word " factory " in the Act. Omission of the
accused or the Association of salt merchants to contend, at an earlier stage,
that the salt works do not come within the definition of the word "
factory " is also not of any relevance for our considering the questions
before us. We have made reference to it only in view of the reference made by
the appellants to an opinion expressed by the Chief Inspector of Factories in
his letter to the Deputy Salt Commissioner dated September 13, 1952.
In view of the above,, we are of opinion that
the appellant's Salt Works do come within the definition 609 of the word
',factory" and that the appellant has been rightly convicted of the
offence of working the factory without obtaining a licence. We therefore
dismiss the appeal.