Prelims level : Polity Mains level : GS-II Governance, Social Justice and IR
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Why in News:

  • Dishonest and temporary “removal” of original documents to take photocopies and to
    further use information amounts to theft, the Supreme Court has held.


  • The judgment followed the principle laid down by the apex court in its earlier precedents that “to commit theft, one need not take movable property permanently out of the possession of another with the intention not to return it to him. It would satisfy the definition if he took any movable property out of the possession of another person though he intended to return it later on.”

Apex Court Verdict:

  • The loss need not be caused by a permanent deprivation of property but may be caused even by temporary dispossession, though the person taking it intended to restore it sooner or later. A temporary period of deprivation or dispossession of the property of another cause’s loss to the other.

Calcutta court verdict:

  • held that since the the first 28 documents were still in Birla’s custody, the taking away of the information contained in these documents and their temporary removal would not qualify as theft, dishonest misappropriation of property or dishonest receiving of the stolen property.
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