Thursday, August 15, 2013

file 498a, collect 6 lakhs moolah, quash &HC will oblige !! 6 lakhs in white, how much more in black ??



file 498a, collect 6 lakhs moolah, quash &HC will oblige !! 6 lakhs in white, how much more in black ??

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Crl. Misc. No. M-15266 of 2010 (O&M) -1 -
IN THE HIGH COURT OF PUNJAB AND HARYANA
AT CHANDIGARH.
Crl. Misc. No. M-15266 of 2010 (O&M)
Date of Decision: 31.5.2013.
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Baldev Singh and another ........Petitioners
Vs.
State of Punjab and another ......Respondents
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CORAM: HON'BLE MRS. JUSTICE SABINA
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Present: Mr. Shekhar Kumar, Advocate for Mr. R.S.Bains, Advocate for the petitioners.
Mr. J.S.Bhullar, AAG, Punjab.
Mr. J.P.Rana, Advocate for Mr. Shailender Kumar, Advocate for respondent No. 2. 
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SABINA, J.

Petitioners have filed this petition under Section 482 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 for quashing of the FIR No. 34 dated 7.4.2010, under Section 420, 498-A, 120-B of the Indian Penal Code ('IPC' for short), registered at Police Station Sadar Kotakpura and all the subsequent proceedings arising therefrom.

Learned counsel for the petitioners has submitted that now parties have amicably settled their matrimonial dispute. Petitioners have paid ` 6,00,000 to respondent No. 2 by way of settlement of her claims.

Learned counsel for respondent No. 2 has admitted the factum of compromise effected between the parties. He has placed on record original affidavit sworn by respondent No. 2 (Annexure P-3) on record and a photocopy of the draft handed over by the petitioners to respondent No. 2 in the sum of 6,00,000. Learned counsel for respondent No. 2 has further submitted that in view of compromise effected between the parties, respondent No. 2 has no objection if the FIR in question is ordered to be quashed.

As per the Full Bench judgment of this Court in Kulwinder Singh and others vs. State of Punjab, 2007 (3) RCR (Criminal) 1052, High Court has power under Section 482 Cr.P.C. to allow the compounding of non-compoundable offence and quash the prosecution where the High Court felt that the same was required to prevent the abuse of the process of any Court or to otherwise secure the ends of justice. This power of quashing is not confined to matrimonial disputes alone. Hon'ble the Apex Court in the case of Gian Singh vs. State of Punjab and another 2012 (4) RCR (Crl.) 543, has held as under:-

"57. The position that emerges from the above
discussion can be summarised thus: the power of the
High Court in quashing a criminal proceeding or FIR
or complaint in exercise of its inherent jurisdiction is
distinct and different from the power given to a
criminal court for compounding the offences under
Section 320 of the Code. Inherent power is of wide
plenitude with no statutory limitation but it has to be
exercised in accord with the guideline engrafted in
such power viz; (i) to secure the ends of justice or (ii)
to prevent abuse of the process of any Court. In what
cases power to quash the criminal proceeding or
complaint or F.I.R may be exercised where the
offender and victim have settled their dispute would
depend on the facts and circumstances of each case
and no category can be prescribed. However, before
exercise of such power, the High Court must have due
regard to the nature and gravity of the crime. Heinous
and serious offences of mental depravity or offences
like murder, rape, dacoity, etc. cannot be fittingly
quashed even though the victim or victim's family and
the offender have settled the dispute. Such offences
are not private in nature and have serious impact on
society. Similarly, any compromise between the victim
and offender in relation to the offences under special
statutes like Prevention of Corruption Act or the
offences committed by public servants while working
in that capacity etc; cannot provide for any basis for
quashing criminal proceedings involving such
offences. But the criminal cases having
overwhelmingly and pre-dominatingly civil flavour
stand on different footing for the purposes of
quashing, particularly the offences arising from
commercial, financial, mercantile, civil, partnership or
such like transactions or the offences arising out of
matrimony relating to dowry, etc. or the family
disputes where the wrong is basically private or
personal in nature and the parties have resolved their
entire dispute. In this category of cases, High Court
may quash criminal proceedings if in its view,
because of the compromise between the offender and
victim, the possibility of conviction is remote and
bleak and continuation of criminal case would put
accused to great oppression and prejudice and
extreme injustice would be caused to him by not
quashing the criminal case despite full and complete
settlement and compromise with the victim. In other
words, the High Court must consider whether it would
be unfair or contrary to the interest of justice to
continue with the criminal proceeding or continuation
of the criminal proceeding would tantamount to abuse
of process of law despite settlement and compromise
between the victim and wrongdoer and whether to
secure the ends of justice, it is appropriate that
criminal case is put to an end and if the answer to the
above question(s) is in affirmative, the High Court
shall be well within its jurisdiction to quash the
criminal proceeding."

Since the parties have arrived at a compromise and have decided to live in peace, no useful purpose would be served in allowing the criminal proceedings to continue. Accordingly, this petition is allowed. FIR No. 34 dated 7.4.2010, under Section 420, 498-A, 120-B IPC, registered at Police Station Sadar Kotakpura and all the consequential proceedings, arising therefrom, are quashed.

(SABINA)

 JUDGE

May 31, 2013

Gurpreet




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