Bhumi Bhagat And Ors vs State Of Punjab And Another on 9 November, 2017

CRM-M-13041-2017 -1-

IN THE HIGH COURT OF PUNJAB AND HARYANA AT
CHANDIGARH

CRM-M-13041-2017 (OM)
Date of decision : 09.11.2017

Bhumi Bhagat and others
…Petitioners

Versus

State of Punjab and another
…Respondents

CORAM: HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE JITENDRA CHAUHAN

Present: Mr. Ajaivir Singh, Advocate for the petitioner.

Ms. Anju Arora, Addl.A.G., Punjab,
assisted by ASI Sikander Singh.

Mr. B.D. Sharma, Advocate for respondent No.2.

JITENDRA CHAUHAN, J. (Oral)

This petition under Section 482 of the Code of Criminal

Procedure has been filed for quashing of FIR No.16 dated 02.02.2015,

registered under Sections 307, 397, 406 and 498-A read with Section 149 of

the Indian Penal Code (for short ‘the IPC’) [challan presented under

Sections 406 and 498-A read with Section 149 IPC, whereas, Sections 307

and 397 read with Section 149 IPC deleted vide order dated 01.05.2015], at

Police Station Navi Baradari, District Jalandhar, and all consequential

proceedings arising therefrom, on the basis of compromise (Annexure P-3)

arrived at between the parties.

Vide order dated 20.04.2017, the parties were directed to

appear before the learned trial Court/Illaqa Magistrate, for getting their

statements recorded. In compliance thereof, report of Judicial Magistrate 1st

Class, Jalandhar, 10.07.2017, was received, wherein, it was noticed that “As

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per compromise Mark B accused has to make payment of Rs.40 lacs at the

time of second statement in proceedings under Section 13-B of Hindu

Marriage Act. Thereafter, on 21.03.2007 (sic 21.03.2017), oral statement

was effected with the accused where they assured to make balance amount

of Rs. 40 lac at the time of making statement of compromise before lower

court in the present case. But now accused are adamant that balance

amount of Rs. 40 lacs will be paid on 25.09.2017 at the time of final

statement in divorce petition. As such accused failed to make the payment

as per oral settlement dated 21.03.2017, therefore, FIR No.16 dated

02.02.2015 be not quashed.”

Learned counsel for the petitioners states that vide judgment

and decree dated 11.10.2017, the marriage between the parties has been

dissolved by a decree of divorce by mutual consent under Section 13-B of

the Hindu Marriage Act. The respondent-wife has received `50,00,000/- as

full and final settlement of her claim for past, present and future

maintenance and alimony and that nothing more is due to her.

Learned counsel appearing on behalf of the respondent-wife

admits the factum of compromise and states that he would have no

objection, in case, the prayer made in the instant petition is allowed.

Hon’ble the Supreme Court in Gian Singh Vs. State of Punjab

and another, 2012(4) RCR (Criminal) 543, has observed 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

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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.”

In Narinder Singh and Others Vs. State of Punjab and

Another (2014) 6 SCC 466, it has been observed thus:-

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“31. In view of the aforesaid discussion, we sum up and
lay down the following principles by which the High
Court would be guided in giving adequate treatment to
the settlement between the parties and exercising its
power under Section 482 of the Code while accepting the
settlement and quashing the proceedings or refusing to
accept the settlement with direction to continue with the
criminal proceedings:

(I) Power conferred under Section 482 of the Code is to
be distinguished from the power which lies in the Court
to compound the offences under Section 320 of the Code.
No doubt, under Section 482 of the Code, the High Court
has inherent power to quash the criminal proceedings
even in those cases which are not compoundable, where
the parties have settled the matter between themselves.
However, this power is to be exercised sparingly and
with caution.

(II)When the parties have reached the settlement and on
that basis petition for quashing the criminal proceedings
is filed, the guiding factor in such cases would be to
secure:

(i) ends of justice, or

(ii) to prevent abuse of the process of any Court.
While exercising the power the High Court is to form an
opinion on either of the aforesaid two objectives.

(III) Such a power is not be exercised in those
prosecutions which involve heinous and serious offences
of mental depravity or offences like murder, rape,
dacoity, etc. Such offences are not private in nature and
have a serious impact on society. Similarly, for offences
alleged to have been committed under special statute like
the
Prevention of Corruption Act or the offences
committed by Public Servants while working in that
capacity are not to be quashed merely on the basis of
compromise between the victim and the offender.

(IV) On the other, those criminal cases having
overwhelmingly and pre-dominantly civil character,
particularly those arising out of commercial
transactions or arising out of matrimonial relationship
or family disputes should be quashed when the parties
have resolved their entire disputes among themselves.

(V) While exercising its powers, the High Court is to
examine as to whether the possibility of conviction is
remote and bleak and continuation of criminal cases
would put the accused to great oppression and prejudice
and extreme injustice would be caused to him by not

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quashing the criminal cases.

(VI) Offences under Section 307 IPC would fall in the
category of heinous and serious offences and therefore is
to be generally treated as crime against the society and
not against the individual alone. However, the High
Court would not rest its decision merely because there is
a mention of
Section 307 IPC in the FIR or the charge is
framed under this provision. It would be open to the
High Court to examine as to whether incorporation of
Section 307 IPC is there for the sake of it or the
prosecution has collected sufficient evidence, which if
proved, would lead to proving the charge under
Section
307 IPC. For this purpose, it would be open to the High
Court to go by the nature of injury sustained, whether
such injury is inflicted on the vital/delegate parts of the
body, nature of weapons used etc. Medical report in
respect of injuries suffered by the victim can generally be
the guiding factor. On the basis of this prima facie
analysis, the High Court can examine as to whether
there is a strong possibility of conviction or the chances
of conviction are remote and bleak. In the former case it
can refuse to accept the settlement and quash the
criminal proceedings whereas in the later case it would
be permissible for the High Court to accept the plea
compounding the offence based on complete settlement
between the parties. At this stage, the Court can also be
swayed by the fact that the settlement between the parties
is going to result in harmony between them which may
improve their future relationship.

(VII) While deciding whether to exercise its power under
Section 482 of the Code or not, timings of settlement play
a crucial role. Those cases where the settlement is
arrived at immediately after the alleged commission of
offence and the matter is still under investigation, the
High Court may be liberal in accepting the settlement to
quash the criminal proceedings/investigation. It is
because of the reason that at this stage the investigation
is still on and even the charge sheet has not been filed.
Likewise, those cases where the charge is framed but the
evidence is yet to start or the evidence is still at infancy
stage, the High Court can show benevolence in
exercising its powers favourably, but after prima facie
assessment of the circumstances/material mentioned
above. On the other hand, where the prosecution
evidence is almost complete or after the conclusion of
the evidence the matter is at the stage of argument,
normally the High Court should refrain from exercising
its power under
Section 482 of the Code, as in such
cases the trial court would be in a position to decide the

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case finally on merits and to come a conclusion as to
whether the offence under
Section 307 IPC is committed
or not. Similarly, in those cases where the conviction is
already recorded by the trial court and the matter is at
the appellate stage before the High Court, mere
compromise between the parties would not be a ground
to accept the same resulting in acquittal of the offender
who has already been convicted by the trial court. Here
charge is proved under
Section 307 IPC and conviction
is already recorded of a heinous crime and, therefore,
there is no question of sparing a convict found guilty of
such a crime.”

Hence, in view of the facts and circumstances of the instant

case and the guidelines laid down by Hon’ble the Supreme Court, this Court

feels that no useful purpose would be served in keeping the proceedings

alive. It will be in the interest of justice, if the settlement reached between

the parties is accepted.

Accordingly, the present petition is allowed. FIR No.16 dated

02.02.2015, registered under Sections 307, 397, 406 and 498-A read with

Section 149 IPC (challan presented under Sections 406 and 498-A read with

Section 149 IPC, whereas, Sections 307 and 397 read with Section 149 IPC

deleted vide order dated 01.05.2015), at Police Station Navi Baradari,

District Jalandhar, and all consequential proceedings arising therefrom are

hereby quashed qua the present petitioner(s).

09.11.2017 (JITENDRA CHAUHAN)
atulsethi JUDGE

Whether speaking / reasoned : Yes No

Whether Reportable : Yes No

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