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Harpreet Singh vs State Of Punjab And Anr on 17 December, 2019

IN THE HIGH COURT OF PUNJAB AND HARYANA
AT CHANDIGARH

CRM-M-3844-2019(OM)
Date of decision: 17.12. 2019

Harpreet Singh

…….Petitioner

Versus

State of Punjab and another
……Respondents

CORAM: HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE ANIL KSHETARPAL

Present:- Mr.Atul Jain, Advocate for the petitioner

Mr. Hittan Nehra, Addl. AG, Punjab

Ms. Sukhpreet Kaur, Advocate for respondent no.2

ANIL KSHETARPAL, J. (ORAL)

Accused-petitioner has filed the present petition under

Section 482 Cr.P.C for quashing of order dated 3.10.2018 by the

Magistrate, affirmed in revision by the Court of Sessions. Learned Chief

Judicial Magistrate has found that prima facie the petitioner-accused is

required to be additionally charged with an offence under Section 409

IPC as he was an attorney.

Learned counsel for the petitioner submits that the charge

under Section 406 IPC was already framed and therefore, there was no

requirement of an alteration of the charge. He further submitted that as

per Section 216 Cr.P.C, the Court may alter or add any charge at any

time, before the judgment is pronounced, however, that power can only

be exercised suo moto and not on the application of the first

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CRM-M-3844-2019(OM) 2

informant/complainant.

This Court has considered submissions, however, does not

find any substance therein. In the present case, original charge, apart

from other offences, under Section 406 IPC was framed. First

informant/victim subsequently filed an application for alteration/addition

of charge under Section 409 IPC on the ground that petitioner-accused

was an attorney and he committed criminal breach of trust. The Court on

appreciation of material available on the file found substance in the

application. Therefore, the charge was ordered to be amended. The

charge can be amended or added at any time before the pronouncement of

judgment. Discretion vests with the Judicial Magistrate to alter the

charge at any stage till he pronounces the judgment.

As regards second contention of the learned counsel for the

petitioner, it may be noted that Section 216 Cr.P.C entitles/enables the

Court to amend or alter charge at any stage before the pronouncement of

the judgment. The power under Section 216 Cr.P.C cannot be interpreted

in a manner, restricted to be exercised by the Court suo moto only. It can

be exercised on the application of the public prosecutor or the victim.

The phraseology used in Section 216 Cr.P.C does not debar the first

informant/victim to draw attention of the Court to the defective or

erroneous charge.

In view of the aforesaid, this Court does not find any

substance, even in the second argument of the learned counsel for the

petitioner.

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CRM-M-3844-2019(OM) 3

Hence, no ground to interfere is made out.

Dismissed.

17.12. 2019 (ANIL KSHETARPAL)
rekha JUDGE
Whether speaking/reasoned Yes / No
Whether Reportable Yes / No

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