498A FIR & Chargesheet both Quashed against Married Sister-in-Law

IN THE HIGH COURT OF GUJARAT AT AHMEDABAD

SPECIAL CRIMINAL APPLICATION NO. 3516 of 2012
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JITENBHAI NAVINBHAI SONI & 4….Applicant(s)
Versus
STATE OF GUJARAT & 1….Respondent(s)
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CORAM: HONOURABLE MR.JUSTICE S.G.SHAH
Date : 20/06/2016
ORAL ORDER

1. Petitioners herein are pressing charges u/ss.498A, 323, 504, 506(1) and 114 of the Indian Penal Code because of complaint filed by one Heenaben, wife of present petitioner No.1 on 15.9.2012, alleging ill-treatment, demand of dowry and physical torture, so also dragging out of matrimonial house by all of them. It is undisputed fact that petitioner No.1 is husband of the complainant, whereas petitioner No.2 is father-in-law, petitioner No.3 is mother-in-law, petitioner No.4 is brother-in-law and petitioner No.5 is sister- in-law i.e. sister of petitioner No.1. It is also undisputed fact that petitioner No.5 i.e. sister-in-law of the complainant and sister of her husband – petitioner No.1, is married and residing at Ahmedabad; whereas rest of the petitioners are residing at Vadodara, where the incident has taken place. It is also undisputed fact that complainant is also residing at Vadodara.

2. At this stage, it would not be necessary to enter into minute details of dispute between the parties so also history of litigation for the simple reason that trial Court is yet to proceed further based upon the chargesheet already filed before it for framing the charge after scrutiny that whether there is sufficient evidence against petitioners to frame charge and to convict them. It is also undisputed fact that pursuant to FIR dated 15.9.2012, the investigating agency has already filed a chargesheet No.I-111 of 2012 on 17.10.2012 i.e. well before filing of this petition on 7.12.2012. Therefore, though issue regarding jurisdiction of this Court to quash the complaint after framing of the charge may not be taken seriously, at present, the fact remains that atleast petitioner No.5, who married just after couple of months from the marriage of the complainant with petitioner No.1, the allegations against petitioner No.5 are seems to be hypothetical and hyper-technical only because she is sister of petitioner No.1. It is evident from the record that FIR is dated 15.9.2012, whereas marriage of the complainant and petitioner No.1 was solemnised on 17.5.2005, whereas marriage of the petitioner No.5 was solemnised on 23.1.2006. Therefore, there is least chance of ill-treatment and more particularly, beating by petitioner No.5 to the complainant, for the simple reason that after marriage, petitioner No.5 is now residing at Ahmedabad, whereas complainant and other petitioners are residing at Vadodara.

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3.In view of above facts and circumstances, it would be appropriate to quash the complaint so far as petitioner No.5 is concerned. For the purpose, I am relying upon below- mentioned few decision of the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India:-

(1) AIR 2000 SC 2324(1) between Kans Raj Vs.State of Punjab & Ors.;
(2) AIR 2010 SC 3363(1) between Preeti Gupta and Anr. Vs. State of Jharkhand & Anr.; and (3) AIR 2014 SC 2756 between Arnesh Kumar Vs. State of Bihar & Anr.

4.Whereas, so far as other petitioners are concerned, since there are serious allegations in the FIR itself and since chargesheet is already filed, and as petitioners have alternate remedy to file an application to discharge them, considering the available record, learned advocate for the petitioners has submitted that, at present, petitioners are not pressing for order on merits so far as petitioners No.1 to 4 are concerned, and would like to take appropriate steps in accordance with law.

5.In view of above facts and circumstances, petition is allowed qua petitioner No.5 and thereby, though FIR being C.R.No.I-128 of 2012 dated 15.9.2012 registered with Vadodara City police station based upon which chargesheet No.I-111 of 2012 on 17.10.2012 shall stand quashed and therefore, all other proceedings pending against the petitioner No.5 pursuant to such FIR and chargesheet shall stand quashed and set-aside as well as dismissed. However, it is made clear that the FIR and chargesheet shall remain in force against remaining petitioners since they do not press this petition at this stage. It is made clear that this Court has not examined are concerned and therefore, in case any petition is preferred by them either before the Sessions Court or before any other authority, then, it shall be decided in accordance with law without being influenced by the order of this Court.

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6.The petition is therefore, partly allowed in favour of petitioner No.5 only and is dismissed as not pressed qua other petitioners i.e. No.1 to 4.

Order

 (S.G.SHAH, J.)

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