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Shiv Narain Jaiswal And Others v. State Of U.P. And Another - APPLICATION U/s 482 No. 11893 of 2004  RD-AH 17716 (13 October 2006)
Criminal Misc. Application No. 11893 of 2004
Shiv Narain Jaiswal and others Vs. State of U.P. and another
This is an application under section 482 Cr.P.C. for quashing the proceedings of criminal case no. 3025 of 2002, Abhay Pratap Singh Vs. Shiv Narain Jaiswal and others, pending before the the Chief Judicial Magistrate, Azamgarh and the orders dated 23.9.2002 and 2.1.2003 passed by the Chief Judicial Magistrate, Azamgarh.
I have heard learned counsel for the applicants and learned A.G.A. for the State.
The facts relevant for disposal of this application are that Abhay Pratap Singh, (O.P.no. 2 in this case) moved an application under section 156(3) Cr.P.C. against the accused applicants with these allegations that he is an Advocate practising in civil court, Azamgarh. He had purchased a piece of land bearing plot no. 485 in Mauza Kolwaz Bahadur for construction of his house and after getting his name mutated he started construction of the house in accordance with sanctioned map. Prem Narain and Shiv Narain etc. ( applicants in the present case) had their land adjacent to the aforesaid land and they objected to these constructions hence, the plots of both the parties were surveyed and a report was submitted to higher authorities which made it clear that Shiv Narain etc. have no concern with the land of Abhay Pratap Singh. The authorities were also satisfied on seeing the documents of Abhay Pratap Singh and Abhay Pratap Singh after completing the construction of walls on 10.9.2002 put roof on the walls, and on that date at about 11 P.M. accused Prem Narain, Shiv Narain and two sons of Prem Narain along with their 3- 4 companions came to the newly constructed house of Abhay Pratap Singh. They were having lathis, Dandas, Ballam, Gandasa, and country made pistol in their hands. Abhay Pratap Singh was present at his newly constructed house along with Avnind Singh and Mundesh Singh. Prem Narain and his companions started abusing them and challenged Abhay Pratap Singh, Avnind Singh and Mundesh Singh, and fired at them with an intent to kill them. The assailants were identified in the light of torches. They demolished the roof of the house and caused loss to the complainant to the tune of Rs.30,000/-. They also took five bags of cement, four Phawaras, two Belchas and three Balties with them. Fires were done by the accused persons from their fire arms but the complainant and his companions some how escaped injuries. The complainant went to the police station to lodge a report but his report was not written. When the local police did not take any action, Abhay Pratap approached the higher Police authorities vide his application dated 11.9.2002 which was sent by Registered Post. Even then no action was taken. Then he moved this application under Section 156(3) Cr,P.C. for taking action against the accused persons who had committed offences under sections 504, 506, 147, 148, 149, 440, 307 and 379 I.P.C.
On the above application moved on 17.9.2002, the Magistrate passed an order on 23.9.2002 for its registration as complaint and fixed a date for recording statement of the complainant under section 200 Cr.P.C.. After recording statement of the complainant he also recorded the statements of witnesses Awanind Singh and Mukesh Singh under section 202 Cr.P.C. Then he passed an order on 2.1.2003 summoning the accused applicants under sections 147, 148, 149, 379, 354, 440, 504 and 506 I.P.C. Aggrieved with the orders dated 23.9.2002 and 2.1.2003 the accused filed this application under section 482 Cr.P.C. for quashing these orders.
It has been alleged in this application that a civil suit was already pending between the parties in respect of the disputed land and a copy of the plaint of O.S. no. 679 of 2001 filed in the court of Civil Judge (Junior Division ), Azamgarh was produced as Annexure no.1 to the affidavit and a copy of injunction order issued by the Civil Judge (Junior Division )in that suit directing both the parties to maintain status-quo was filed as Annexure no.2. A copy of the written statement of the defendants in that suit was also filed as annexure no.3.It was alleged that since the application was filed under section 156(3) Cr.P.C., the Magistrate could not pass an order for registering it as a complaint case and in support of this contention the learned counsel for the applicant has cited before me a ruling of Hon'ble K.N. Sinha,J. of this Court in 'Shyam Lal Jaiswal Vs. State of U.P' 2003 (46) ACC 1164 in which it has been held that in an application moved under section 153(3) Cr.P.C. Magistrate cannot pass an order for registering it as complaint and such an order is illegal. In reply to this contention, the learned counsel for O.P. no.2 cited before me a Full Bench ruling of this Court in 'Ram Babu Gupta Vs. State of U.P.and others ' 2001 (43) ACC 50. In this case it has been held that Magistrate has got jurisdiction to treat the application moved under section 156(3) Cr.P.C. as complaint and the different view taken by the Division bench of this Court in the case of 'Suraj Mal Vs. State' 1993(30) ACC 81 does not lay down correct law.
I have carefully gone through both these rulings. The Full Bench decision in the case of Ram Babu Gupta is based upon the decision of Hon'ble Supreme Court in the case of Suresh Chand Jain Vs. State of Madhya Pradesh and another' J.T. 2001 (2) SC 81. Their Lordships of Full Bench have referred to various rulings on the above point in para 15 of the judgment. It may be mentioned that the decision in Suresh Chand Jain's case was pronounced by Hon'ble Supreme Court when the judgment in Ram Babu Gupta's case had been reserved. After delivery of the judgment of Hon'ble Apex Court in the aforesaid case the Full bench fixed a date for re-hearing of the matter in the light of the above judgment and thereafter it decided this case on the basis of the above judgment in Suresh Chand Jain's case holding that in view of this pronouncement of the Hon'ble Supreme Court there was no necessity to deal with the rulings referred to in para 15 of the judgment.
The view taken by Hon'ble Single Judge in Shyam Lal Jaiswal's case is just opposite to the view taken by the Full bench in the case of Ram Babu Gupta and it appears that this Full Bench ruling was not cited before his Lordship while deciding the above case. His Lordship has, however, relied upon the following three rulings in his judgment in the case of Shyam Lal Jaiswal:
1. Madhu Bala Vs.Suresh Kumar and others 1997 (35) ACC 371 (S.C.);
2. Dinesh Chandra and others Vs. State of U.P. 2000(41) ACC 831 (Allahabad);
3. Mahboob Ali Vs. State of U.P. and others 2001 (Suppl) ACC 277 (Allahabad).
I have gone through all the aforesaid three rulings as well as the ruling of Hon'ble Apex Court in Suresh Chandra Jain's case referred to in the Full Bench ruling of this Court in Ram Babu Gupta's case with a view to ascertain as to what is correct legal position, I now proceed to discuss all these rulings:
First of all I take up the judgement of Hon'ble Apex Court in the case of Suresh Chand Jain Vs. State of Madhya Pradesh & another : JT 2001 (2) SC 81 . In this case facts were that a complaint was made before the Chief Judicial Magistrate , Neemuch (M.P.) with the allegation that the accused had committed offence punishable under section 420 I.P.C. and under section 3 of the Prizes , Chits and Money Circulation Scheme ( Prohibition) Act . After perusal of the complaint the Magistrate was of the view that the offence was of serious nature and so it required to be investigated by the police . He, therefore, instead of proceeding with the matter as a complaint case , passed an order directing the police under section 156(3) Cr. P. C. to investigate the case. This order was challenged by the accused before the learned Sessions Judge by filing a revision contending that the Magistrate had no jurisdiction to pass such an order on a complaint filed before him. This plea was rejected by the Sessions Judge. Then he moved an application before High Court under section 482 Cr.P.C. That application was also dismissed. Then he filed a criminal appeal before the Hon'ble Apex Court challenging the above order. The Hon'ble Supreme Court holding that the order passed by the Magistrate was absolutely right made following observations in para 10 of the judgement:
"The position is thus clear. Any judicial Magistrate , before taking cognizance of the offence, can order investigation under Section 156 (3) of the Code. If he does so, he is not to examine the complainant on oath because he was not taking cognizance of any offence therein. For the purpose of enabling the police to start investigation it is open to the Magistrate to direct the police to register an F.I.R. There is nothing illegal in doing so . After all registration of an F.I.R. involves only the process of entering the substance of the information relating to the commission of the cognizable offence in a book kept by the officer in charge of the police station as indicated in Section 154 of the Code. Even if a Magistrate does not say in so many words while directing investigation under Section 156 (3) of the Code that an F.I.R. Should be registered , it is the duty of the officer-in- charge of the police station to register the F.I.R. regarding the cognizable offence disclosed by the complaint because that police officer could take further steps contemplated in Chapter XII of the Code only thereafter."
The Hon'ble Apex Court in the said judgement relied upon its earlier decision of three Judges Bench in Gopal Das Sindhi and others Vs. State of Assam and another ( AIR 1961 SC 986) and two Judges Bench in Tula Ram and others Vs. Kishore Singh ( AIR 1977 SC 240). In Gopal Das Sindhi (supra) the Hon'ble Apex Court had made the following observations:
" If the Magistrate had not taken cognizance of the offence on the complaint filed before him, he was not obliged to examine the complainant on oath and the witnesses present at the time of the filing of the complaint. We can not read the provision for section 190 to mean that once a complaint is filed, a Magistrate is bound to take cognizance if the facts stated in the complaint disclose the commission of any offence. We are unable to construe the word ' may' in section 190 to mean 'must'. The reason is obvious. A complaint disclosing cognizable offences may well justify a Magistrate in sending the complaint, under section 156(3) to the police for investigation. There is no reason why the time of the Magistrate should be wasted when primarily the duty to investigate the cases involving cognizable offences is with the police. On the other hand, there may be occasions when the Magistrate may exercise his discretion and take cognizable of a cognizance offence."
The same position was reiterated by Hon'ble Apex Court in Tula Ram ( supra).
A decision of Punjab & Haryana High Court in Suresh Kumar Vs. State of Haryana [ 1996(3) Recent Criminal Reports 137] was also cited before the Hon'ble Apex Court in which a contrary view was taken by that Court. In regard to that ruling the Hon'ble Apex Court made the following observation in para 12 of its judgement:
".......... It is unfortunate that when this Court laid down the legal position so explicitly in the above two decisions which reached the notice of the learned Judge of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, he had formulated a position contrary to it by stating that " the Magistrate has no power within the contemplation of section 156(3) of the Code, to ask for registration of the case." It appears that the judicial officers under Punjab and Haryana High Court who were, till then, following the correct position, were asked by the learned Judge to follow the erroneous position formulated by him in the aforesaid judgement."
Now I take up the Full Bench judgement of this Court in Ram Babu Gupta and another Vs. State of U.P. and others [2001 (43) ACC 50] . In this Full Bench case the following two points were framed for consideration:
"1. Should the Magistrate while exercising powers under Section 156(3) Cr.P.C. be left to write cryptic orders " register and investigate." or " register and do the needful" or " he has to investigate", or the like ? Or the Magistrate's order should prima facie indicate application of mind;
2. Is the observation of the Division Bench in Suraj Mal ( supra) correct when it says that when an applicant before a Magistrate prays only for registration and investigation of a case, such an application will not become "complaint" as defined in Section 2 of the Cr.P.C.?"
This Hon'ble Full Bench after referring to the case law on the point and then relying upon the aforesaid ruling of Hon'ble Apex Court in Suresh Chand Jain (supra) , replied point no.1 as under:
"16. Having thus noticed the observations aforesaid in Suresh Chand Jain, it may be desirable to revert to the facts in Suresh Chand Jain. The Magistrate in that case received a complaint submitted by the complainant and expressed his opinion that from the allegations therein, serious offences were disclosed and the complaint was required to be investigated by the police and thus forwarded it to the police station with the direction to register the First Information Report and initiate investigation and called a copy of the FIR immediately on registration of the case.
17. In view of the aforesaid discussion on the legal provisions and decisions of the Supreme Court as on date, it is hereby held that on receiving a complaint , the Magistrate has to apply his mind to the allegations in the complaint upon which he may not at once proceed to take cognizance and may order it to go to the police station for being registered and investigated . The Magistrate's order must indicate application of mind. If the Magistrate takes cognizance , he proceeds to follow the procedure provided in Chapter XV of Cr.P.C. The first question stands answered thus."
Regarding point no.2 the Full /Bench made the following observations in para 18 and 19 of the judgement:
"18. Coming to the second question noted above it is to be at once stated that a provision empowering a court to act in a particular manner and a provision creating a right for an aggrieved person to approach a Court or authority, must be understood distinctively and should not be mixed up. While Sections 154,155 sub-section (1) and (2) of 156, Cr.P.C. confer right on an aggrieved person to reach the police, 156(3) empowers a Magistrate to act in a particular manner in a given situation . Therefore, it is not possible to hold that where a bare application is moved before Court only praying for exercise of powers under Section 156 (3) Cr.P.C., it will remain an application only and would not be in the nature of a complaint. It has been noted above that the Magistrate has to always apply his mind on the allegations in the complaint where he may use his powers under Section 156 (3) Cr.P.C. In this connection it may be immediately added that where in an application , a complainant states facts which constitute cognizable offence but makes a defective prayer, such an application will not cease to be a complaint nor can the Magistrate refuse to treat it as complaint even though there be no prayer seeking trial of the known or unknown accused. The Magistrate has to deal with such facts as constitute cognizable offence and for all practical purposes even such an application would be a complaint . This Court can do no better than refer to the following observations in Suresh Chand Jain(supra):-
"The position is thus clear. Any judicial Magistrate, before taking cognizance of the offence, can order investigation under Section 156(3) of the Code.... could take further steps contemplated in Chapter XII of the Code only thereafter."
19. In view of the aforesaid discussion, the observations in the two paragraphs noted above in Suraj Mal (supra), cannot be said to be laying down correct law, therefore, those observations shall remain confined to the decision in Suraj Mal. The second point formulated above stands also answered thus."
It was thus also held in the above para 19 of the Full Bench Judgement that the Division Bench of this Court in Suraj Mal 1993 (30) ACC 81 taking a contrary view did not lay down the correct law.
In view of the decision of Hon'ble Supreme Court in Sumer Chand Jain ( supra ) and the Full Bench decision of this Court in Ram Babu Gupta (supra ), the correct legal position is that even in a complaint, the Magistrate before taking the cognizance under Chapter XV of Cr.P.C. can pass an order for investigation by police under section 156(3) Cr.P.C. if the allegations made in the complaint disclose a cognizable offence. Similarly on an application under section 156(3) Cr.P.C. the Magistrate has got a right to treat it as a complaint and to proceed with it under Chapter XV of the Cr.P.C..
The aforesaid ruling of Hon'ble Supreme Court and the above Full Bench ruling of this Court do not appear to have been cited before Hon'ble K.N.Sinha ,J when his Lordship was deciding the case of Shyam Lal Jaiswal Vs,. State of U.P. [2003 (46) ACC 1164] in which he has taken a view contrary to the law laid down by Hon'ble Apex Court and by the Full Bench of this Court.
Hon'ble K.N. Sinha ,J, has , however, referred to following three decisions in support of his view that on an application moved under section 156(3) Cr.P.C. the Magistrate has got no jurisdiction to pass an order to treat it as a complaint.
1.Madhu Bala Vs. Suresh Kumar 1997(35) ACC 371 (SC)
2.Dinesh Chandra Vs.State of U.P. 2000 (41) ACC831
3.Mahboob Ali Vs. State of U.P 2001 (Suppl.) ACC 277.
I have gone through all these rulings also and now I proceed to discuss them one by one.
First of all I take up the ruling in the case of Madhu Bala (supra) . In this case facts were that a complaint was lodged before the C.J.M. Kurukshetra under section 498A and 406 I.P.C. and on that complaint the Magistrate instead of taking cognizance under section 190 Cr.P.C. passed order for investigation by the police under section 156(3) Cr.P.C. directing the police to register the case and to investigate the same. Thereafter the police investigated the matter and submitted charge sheet against the accused persons under section 498A and 406 I.P.C. The Magistrate took cognizance against the accused persons under section 406 I.P.C. only . He did not take cognizance under section 498A I.P.C. holding that the offence under section 498A I.P.C. was allegedly committed outside his territorial jurisdiction within the district of Karnal. Thereafter another complaint was filed against the accused persons in the court of C.J.M. Karnal under Section 498A I.P.C. and on this complaint also the Magistrate passed order for investigation by the police under section 156(3) Cr.P.C. The police accordingly registered the case and after investigation submitted charge sheet. Then cognizance was taken by the Magistrate. Charges were also framed against the accused persons. Thereafter accused persons filed application under section 482 Cr.P.C. before Punjab and Haryana High Court challenging the orders of both the Chief Judicial Magistrate of Karnal and Kurukshetra . The High Court allowed the application under section 482 Cr. P. C. holding that the Magistrate had no power to direct the police to register the case . The order of the High Court was challenged before the Hon'ble Apex Court . The Hon'ble Apex Court allowed the appeal holding that the order passed by the Magistrates were completely legal and justified. It made the following observations in this judgement:
"From a combined reading of the above provisions , it is abundantly clear that when a written complaint disclosing a cognizable offence is made before a Magistrate, he may take cognizance upon the same under Section 190(1)(a) of the Code and proceed with the same in accordance with the provisions of Chapter XV. The other option available to the Magistrate is such a case is to send the complaint to the appropriate Police Station under Section 156(3) for investigation. Once such a direction is given under sub-section (3) of Section 156 the police is required to investigate into that complaint under sub-section (1) thereof and on completion of investigation to submit a 'police report' in accordance with Section 173(2) on which a Magistrate may take cognizance under Section 190(1)(b)- but not under 190(1)a). Since a complaint filed before a Magistrate cannot be a 'police report' in view of the definition of 'complaint' referred to earlier and since the investigation of a 'cognizable case' by the police under Section 156 (1) has to culminate in a ' police report' the 'complaint'- as soon as an order under Section 156(3 is passed thereon- transforms itself to a report given in writing within the meaning of Section 154 of the Code, which is known as the First Information Report (F.I.R.) As under Section 156(1), the police can only investigate a cognizable 'case', it has to formally register a case on that report"
Thereafter referring to certain provisions of the Police Act and Rules it further observed as under:
"From the foregoing discussion it is evident that whenever a Magistrate directs an investigation on a 'complaint' the police has to register a cognizable case on that complaint treating the same as the F.I.R. and comply with the requirements of the above Rules. It , therefore, passes our comprehension as to how the direction of a Magistrate asking the police to 'register a case' makes an order of investigation under Section 156(3) legally unsustainable. Indeed, even if a Magistrate does not pass a direction to register a case, still in view of the provisions of Section 156(3) of the Code which empowers the Police to investigate into a cognizable 'case' and the Rules framed under the Indian Police Act, 1861 it ( the police) is duty bound to formally register a case and then investigate into the same. The provisions of the Code, therefore, does not in any way stand in the way of a Magistrate to direct the police to register a case at the police station and then investigate into the same. In our opinion when an order for investigation under Section 156(3)_ of the Code is to be made the proper direction to the Police would be 'to register a case at the police station treating the complaint as the First Information Report and investigate into the same."
With due deference to his Lordship deciding Shyam Lal Jaiswal's case (supra), it is pointed out that the above observations of the Hon'ble Apex Court do not support the conclusion drawn by his Lordship in the above ruling.
The second ruling referred in the case of Shyam Lal is of this Court in the case Dinesh Chandra (supra). I have very carefully gone through this ruling also. In this judgement no specific finding has been recorded on the issue and actually his Lordship(Hon'ble S.K.Agarwal,J) has made a reference to the Full Bench which was constituted in the case of Ram Babu (supra). This reference has also been considered in the Ram Babu's case. In this case also , the Magistrate on a complaint before him passed an order directing registration of the case by the police and this order was challenged before this Court and the matter was referred to the above Full Bench.
While making the reference the following observations were made by Hon'ble S. K.Agarwal,J in para 20 and 21 of its judgement:
"20. In view of the foregoing discussions what is essential for the exercise of the power under Section 156(3) is that the application must disclose the commission of a cognizable case and the facts given therein relate to commission of a cognizable offence. If that is there the Magistrate has to order investigation.
21.The Magistrate even in the case of a complaint, requesting him to take action against the offender, may also exercise this option. There is no bar to his doing this but it can be done at a pre-cognizance stage and not after cognizance is taken by him."
With due deference to his Lordship deciding Shyam Lal Jaiswal's case (supra), it is pointed out that the above observations of Hon'ble S. K. Agarwal, J do not support the conclusion drawn by his Lordship in the above ruling. It may also be added that the Full Bench of this Court in Ram Babu (supra) in para 37 of its judgment upheld the order passed by the Magistrate observing that the order dated 2.7.1997 passed by the Magistrate was reasoned one and there were no error in the order. It dismissed Crl. Revision No. 1466/2000 filed before this Court.
The last ruling cited by his Lordship in the case of Shyam Lal Jaiswal is the ruling in the case of Mahboob Ali (supra) delivered by Hon'ble U.S. Tripathi, J. In this case his Lordship had observed that Magistrate has got no jurisdiction to treat an application under section 156(3) Cr.P.C. as complaint and such an order passed by the Magistrate is without jurisdiction. It is, however, to be seen that this ruling was delivered by his Lordship on 21.12.2000 when the aforesaid judgemnt of Hon'ble Apex Court in Suresh Chand Jain (supra) and of Full Bench in the case of Ram Babu Gupta (supra ) had not been delivered . So this ruling of Hon'ble Single Judge now can not be treated to be laying down the correct law in view of aforesaid rulings of Hon'ble Apex Court and Full Bench of this Court.
The position that emerges out of the discussion attempted above is that, taking into consideration the above rulings of Hon'ble Apex Court and Full Bench of this Court, the Single Judge ruling in Shyam Lal Jaiswal's case laying down a contrary view can not be followed and in view of the above ruling of Hon'ble Supreme Court and the Full Bench of this Court , the order passed by the learned Magistrate is completely valid . He had jurisdiction to pass an order for registration of the case as a complaint on an application under section 156(3) Cr. P. C. as laid down by the above Full Bench on the point no. 2 in its judgement .
Learned counsel for the applicant has also pointed out that there is no allegation of the offence under section 354 I.P.C. in the application of the complainant and the Learned Magistrate had erroneously passed an order summoning the accused for this offence. It was conceded by the Learned counsel for the complainant also that there is no allegation under section 354 I.P.C. against the accused persons and it appears that the order summoning the accused persons under section 354 I.P.C. has been passed under some misapprehension . Hence the order passed by the Magistrate summoning the accused under section 354 I.P.C. is liable to be set aside.
The position in this way is that the application under section 482 Cr.P.C. deserves to be partly allowed to the extent of quashing of the summoning order under section 354 I.P.C. only. The rest of the summoning order passed by the Magistrate in respect of the remaining offences is valid .
Accordingly, the application under section 482 Cr. P. C. is partly allowed only to the extent it relates to quashing of the summoning order under section 354 I.P.C. and the summoning order to that extent is quashed. The remaining portion of the summoning order passed by the Magistrate is valid and is maintained. The accused are, however, allowed one month's time to appear before the Magistrate and during this period the execution of non bailable warrant against the accused applicant shall remain stayed so as to enable him to appear before the court concerned. The accused applicant, after putting in appearance before the court, may apply for bail and their bail application shall be decided by the Courts expeditiously, if possible on the same day, taking into consideration the directions of this Court in the case of Amrawati Devi Vs. State of U. P. [2004(ACJ) 1846].
With the above observations the application under section 482 Cr.P.C. stands disposed of.
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