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Baljinder Singh vs State Of Haryana on 30 April, 2019

CRM-M No.42929 of 2018 (OM) 1

IN THE HIGH COURT OF PUNJAB AND HARYANA AT
CHANDIGARH

CRM-M No.42929 of 2018 (OM)
Decided on: 30.04.2019

Baljinder Singh
….Petitioner

Versus

State of Haryana
….Respondent

CORAM: HON’BLE MR JUSTICE ARVIND SINGH SANGWAN

Present : Mr. Vijay Lath, Advocate
for the petitioner.

Mr. Himmat Singh, DAG, Haryana.

Mr. Balvinder Sangwan, Advocate
for the complainant – HAICL.

ARVIND SINGH SANGWAN, J. (Oral)

The petitioner prays for grant of anticipatory bail in FIR

No.205 dated 04.09.2018 registered under Sections 406, Section420 read with

Section 34 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 (in short ‘SectionIPC’) at Police

Station Sadar Ambala.

The operative part of the order dated 11.10.2018, vide

which interim anticipatory bail has been granted to the petitioner, is

reproduced as under:-

“….Counsel for the petitioner has submitted that as
per the allegations in the FIR, the complainant – Haryana
Agro Industries Corporation Limited (hereinafter to be
referred to as ‘the HAICL’) is a procuring agency of the
State Government and during the marketing season of
2014-15, the District Milling Committee allotted the firm
of the petitioner i.e. M/s. Gagan Rice Mills, 5861.63 MT of

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CRM-M No.42929 of 2018 (OM) 2

paddy for Custom Milling of Rice (CMR) as per the
agreement dated 01.10.2014. It is further stated in the FIR
that the rice miller had supplied 3927.29 MT of Custom
Milled Rice on behalf of the complainant to Food
Corporation of India (FCI) by 31.03.2015, a date which
was extended by the Government upto 30.09.2015 and,
thus, by not handing over the complete stock, has caused
huge loss to the Government Exchequer and has
committed a fraud of Rs.5,39,50,364/-.

Counsel for the petitioner has argued that the
petitioner has, in fact, supplied the custom rice to Food
Corporation of India by way of 137 consignments, which
is equivalent to the total allotted rice. Counsel for the
petitioner has relied upon the statement pertaining to the
year 2014-15 (Annexure P3) to show that against the
contract number by the Food Corporation of India, the
said custom rice was delivered, however, the dispute arose
when out of 137 consignments, 30 consignments were
adjusted towards one M/s. Shiv Shakti Rice Mills instead
of M/s. Gagan Rice Mills, Mirzapur, Ambala City and the
petitioner has filed a criminal complaint under Sections
406, Section420, Section467, Section468, Section471 and Section120-B IPC against one Anoop
Gachli, District Manager, Haryana Agro Industries
Corporation Limited, Darshan Dhingra, Proprietor of
M/s. Shiv Dass Rice Mills and others. It is further stated
that in the said complaint, statement of one Balwinder
Singh, Manager, FCI, Ambala City was recorded as CW1
(Annexure P4) in which it is stated that the Miller i.e. M/s.
Gagan Rice Mills, has deposited/delivered 137
consignments equal to 73980 bags, underweight 36919.74
Kgs with FCI contract-wise and also proved the aforesaid
statement pertaining to the year 2014-15.

Counsel for the petitioner has further submitted that
even when the matter was pending before this Court for

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appointment of an Arbitrator as per the terms and
conditions of the clause of the agreement, the petitioner
has taken a specific stand that the official of the
complainant are hand-in-glove with partner of M/s. Shiv
Dass Rice Mills. It is further submitted that a Civil Suit
No.6 dated 10.01.2018 is also filed against the
complainant levelling specific allegations against Anoop
Gachli, the then District Manager, HAICL that he has
colluded with M/s. Shiv Dass Rice Mills and the said suit
is also pending.

Counsel for the petitioner has also submitted that
on a complaint given by the petitioner, even an internal
enquiry, was got conducted by the complainant –
Corporation in which, on 07.08.2015, the District
Manager (W) has asked an explanation from District
Manager Farmers Service Centre, Ambala as to how the
allotment of the vehicles for custom rice were changed
from the account of M/s. Gagan Rice Mills to the account
of M/s. Shiv Dass Rice Mills and if, any prior permission
was taken from FCI as well as the Headquarter, in this
context.

Counsel for the petitioner has also submitted that
an FIR No.344 dated 26.12.2015, was registered under
Sections 406 and Section420 IPC by one Hardeep Singh, In-
charge of the Corporation levelling allegations against the
aforesaid Anoop Gachli, the then District Manager,
HAICL, Ambala City, in a similar manner where the paddy
stock was changed.

Counsel for the petitioner has further relied upon
the order dated 27.09.2018 passed by the Managing
Director of the complainant – Corporation, appointing an
Arbitrator regarding the dispute between the petitioner
and the complainant.

Counsel for the petitioner has also relied upon the

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judgment “SectionKailash Verma vs Punjab State Civil Supplies
Corporation and another”, 2005(1) RCR (Criminal) 727,
wherein the Hon’ble Supreme Court has held that when the
Government Department entrust paddy to an accused for
dehusking and the same is not returned by the accused as
per the agreement, it is a matter of civil nature and no
offence under Section 406 IPC is made out.

Counsel for the petitioner has further placed
reliance on the judgment “SectionPunjab State Civil Supplies
Corporation (PUNSUP) vs Deepak Kumar and another”,
2007(2) RCR (Criminal) 550, wherein a similar view has
been taken that if there is an arbitration clause in the
agreement, no offence under Section 406 IPC is made out.

In reply, counsel for the State, on instructions from
the Investigating Officer, assisted by counsel for the
complainant – Corporation has, however, opposed the
prayer for bail. It is submitted by counsel for the State that
M/s. Shiv Dass Rice Mills has given a letter in writing that
on account of shortage of space, they want to transfer
13817 bags to M/s. Gagan Rice Mills through the
petitioner, to which they had given no objection and
thereafter, the disputed 18 consignments of Custom Mill
Rice were permitted to be transferred to the premises of
M/s. Gagan Rice Mills and when the petitioner handed
over the same to Food Corporation of India, those
consignments were adjusted in the account of M/s. Shiv
Dass Rice Mills. Counsel for the complainant has also
raised the arguments on the similar ground. It is also
submitted that even in the civil litigation the Corporation
has taken a similar stand.

In reply, counsel for the petitioner has submitted
that the petitioner has got his signatures attested from the
Forensic Science Laboratory, Madhuban Karnal, on the
disputed letters relied upon by the Corporation and no

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definite opinion has been given that it bears the signatures
of the petitioner.

After hearing the counsel for the parties,
considering the fact that an Arbitrator has already been
appointed regarding the dispute between the parties and
also in view of the fact that the role of Anoop Gachli, the
then District Manager, also needs to be probed during the
investigation, I find that it is not a case where custodial
interrogation of the petitioner is required, at this stage.
Accordingly, the petitioner is directed to appear before the
Investigating Officer on 20.10.2018 at 10:00 am or on any
other date or time fixed by him, to join investigation and
he shall be released on interim bail subject to the
following conditions:-

1. He shall make himself available for interrogation by a
police officer as and when required;

2. He shall not directly or indirectly make any
inducement, threat or promise to any person
acquainted with the facts of the case so as to dissuade
him from disclosing such facts to the Court or to any
police officer; and

3. He shall not leave India without previous permission of
the Court.

List again on 12.12.2018.”

Counsel for the petitioner has submitted that, in pursuance

to the order dated 11.10.2018, the petitioner has appeared before the

Investigating Officer and has joined the investigation.

Counsel for the State, on instructions from ASI Shambhu

Lal, has not disputed the aforesaid fact and submits that the petitioner is

no more required for further investigation.

In view of the above, this petition is allowed and the

interim bail granted to the petitioner vide order dated 11.10.2018 is

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made absolute subject to the conditions envisaged under Section 438(2)

Cr.P.C.

(ARVIND SINGH SANGWAN)
JUDGE
30.04.2019
yakub

Whether speaking/reasoned Yes/No

Whether reportable: Yes/No

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