498a quashed qua reltaives of husband no specific allegations

IN THE HIGH COURT OF PUNJAB HARYANA, CHANDIGARH

Criminal Misc. M No. 10561 of 2007(OM)
Date of Decision: July 24, 2012

Surinder Singh and others ………..Petitioners

Versus

State of Punjab ……….Respondent

Coram: Hon’ble Mrs. Justice Sabina

Present: Mr.R.S.Ghuman, Advocate for the petitioners

Mr.D.S.Paul,Deputy Advocate General Punjab
Mr.J.S.Brar,Advocate for respondent No.2

Sabina, J.

Petitioners have preferred this petition under Section 482 of the Code Criminal Procedure, 1973 seeking quashing of the FIR No. 99 dated 14.7.2004 registered under Sections 498- A,406,506,34 of the Indian Penal Code (`IPC’ for short) at Police Station Sadar Phagwara, District Kapurthala (Annexure P5).

The prosecution story in brief is that the complainant was married to accused No.1-Charanjit Singh on 19.11.2000 as per Sikh rites. No child was born to them out of the said wedlock. At the time of her marriage, sufficient dowry had been given by her parents . ` 3,00,000/- had been given to the husband and mother-in-law of the complainant towards their travelling expenses for going to Canada. The complainant lived with her husband upto 4.12.2000. The complainant was ill-treated by her husband and mother-in-law on account of the insufficiency of dowry. Charanjit Singh had moved papers for sponsorship of the complainant but the immigration was declined to the complainant by the Embassy as he could not get married within three months of divorce from his earlier marriage. Harjinder Singh had acted like maternal uncle of Charanjit Singh and had performed all the ceremonies. Harvinder Kaur, daughter of Harjinder Singh was married to Charanjit Singh earlier and they were divorced on 17.11.2000. However, Harvinder Kaur and Harjinder Singh did not disclose the factum of earlier marriage of Charanjit Singh to the complainant. She had now received divorce adjudication from Canada.

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After hearing the learned counsel for the parties, this petition deserves to be allowed.

It has been held in State of Haryana vs. Bhajan Lal, 1992 Supp(1) Supreme Court Cases 335, the Apex Court has held as under:-

“The following categories of cases can be stated by way of illustration wherein the extraordinary power under Article 226 or the inherent powers under Section 482,Cr.P.C. Can be exercised by the High Court either to prevent abuse of the process of any court or otherwise to secure the ends of justice, though it may not be possible to lay down any precise, clearly defined and sufficiently chennelised and inflexible guidelines or rigid formulae and to give an exhaustive list of myriad kinds of cases wherein such power should be exercised:- (1)Where the allegations made in the first information report or the complainant, even if they are taken at their face value and accepted in their entirety do not prima facie constitute any offence or make out a case against the accused.

(2)Where the allegations in the first information report and other materials, if any, accompanying the FIR do not disclose a cognizable offence, justifying an investigation by police officers under Section 156(1)of the Code except under an order of a Magistrate within the purview of Section 155(2) of the Code.

(3)Where the uncontroverted allegations made in the FIR or complaint and the evidence collected in support of the same do no disclose the commission of any offence and make out a case against the accused.

(4)Where, the allegations in the FIR do not constitute a cognizable offence but constitute only a non-cognizable offence, no investigation is permitted by a Police Officer without an order of Magistrate as contemplated under Section 155(2) of the Code.

(5)Where the allegations made in the FIR or complaint are so absurd and inherently improbable on the basis of which no prudent person can ever reach a just conclusion that there is sufficient ground for proceeding against the accused.

(6)Where there is an express legal bar engrafted in any of the provisions of the Code or the concerned Act (under which a criminal proceeding is instituted) to the institution and continuance of the proceedings and/or where there is specific provision in the Code or the concerned Act, providing efficacious redress for the grievance of aggrieved party.

(7)Where a criminal proceeding is manifestly attended with mala fide and/or where the proceedings is maliciously instituted with an ulterior motive for wreaking vengeance on the accused and with a view to spite him due to private and personal grudge. We also give a note of caution to the effect that the power of quashing a criminal proceeding should be exercised very sparingly and with circumspection and that too in the rarest of rare cases; that the court will not be justified in embarking upon an enquiry as to the reliability or genuineness or otherwise of the allegations made in the FIR or the complaint and that the extraordinary or inherent powers do not confer an arbitrary jurisdiction on the court to act according to its whim or caprice.”

Petitioner No.2-Savdeep Kaur is the sister of Charanjit Singh, husband of the complainant. Petitioner No.3-Rajinder Singh is the husband of Savdeep Kaur. Petitioner No.1 -Surinder Singh is described as paternal uncle of the complainant. A perusal of the FIR reveals that there is no specific allegation against the petitioners in the FIR. The complainant had got married to Charanjit Singh on 19.11.2000. Thereafter, Charanjit Singh moved necessary papers for immigration of the complainant to Canada but the same was denied by the Embassy. It appears that the FIR in question was lodged in the year 2004 as the immigration to the complainant was denied by the Embassy. Petitioners No. 2 and 3 are presently residing abroad. The complainant has got remarried after she got divorced from Charanjit Singh and is also, admittedly, now settled abroad. Since there is no specific allegation against the petitioners in the FIR, the continuation of the criminal proceedings against them would be nothing but an abuse of process of law.

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Accordingly, this petition is allowed. FIR No. 99 dated 14.7.2004 registered at Police Station Sadar Phagwara District Kapurthala under Sections 498-A, 406,506 and 34 IPC (Annexure P5) and all subsequent proceedings arising therefrom qua petitioners are quashed.

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