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HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE AT ALLAHABAD
?Court No. – 83
Case :- APPLICATION U/S 482 No. – 10760 of 2021
Applicant :- Nikhil Agarwal
Opposite Party :- State of U.P. and Another
Counsel for Applicant :- Anurag Kumar Pandey
Counsel for Opposite Party :- G.A.
Hon’ble Rajeev Misra,J.
Heard Mr. A.K. Pandey, learned counsel for applicant, learned A.G.A. for State.
This application under Section 482 Cr.P.C. has been filed challenging charge-sheet No. 54 of 2020 dated 8.11.2020 submitted in Case Crime No. 16 of 2020, under Sections 498A, 323, 504, 506 IPC, P.S. Mahila Thana, District Bareilly as well as entire proceedings of consequential Case No. 5289 of 2020 (State Vs. Nikhil Agarwal) arising out of above mentioned case crime number, now pending in the Court of Chief Judicial Magistrate, Bareilly.
It transpires from record that in respect of various criminal acts alleged to have been committed by accused persons, an F.I.R. dated 20.2.2020 was lodged by first informant/opposite party-2 Shilpi Agarwal which was registered as Case Crime No. 16 of 2020, under Sections 498A, 323, 504, 506 IPC, P.S. Mahila Thana, District Bareilly. In the aforesaid F.I.R. three persons namely, Nikhil Agarwal (husband), Arvind Singhal(father-in-law) and Lata Agawal(mother-in-law) of informant opposite party-2 have been nominated as named accused.
Pursuant to aforesaid F.I.R. police proceeded with statutory investigation of aforesaid Case Crime Number in terms of Chapter XII Cr. P. C. After completion of investigation, Investigating Officer submitted a charge sheet dated 8.11.2020 against applicant only. Other two named accused have been exculpated. Upon submission of aforesaid charge-sheet, cognizance was taken by court concerned and ultimately applicant was summoned in consequential case number detailed above.
Record shows that during pendency of above noted criminal case, parties amicably settled their dispute outside the Court. On the basis of settlement so arrived at between the parties, a compromise deed dated 4.2.2021 was drawn. By means of aforesaid compromise deed it has been agreed that the matter be decided on the basis of compromise.Subsequently, aforesaid compromise deed has been filed before court below.
Learned counsel for applicant contends that dispute between the parties is a purely private dispute. During pendency of case before Court below, parties amicably settled their dispute. On the basis of settlement so arrived at between parties, a compromise deed dated 4.2.2021 was drawn which has been also been verified by a notary. Certified copy of same is on record as Annexure-4 to the affidavit. As no orders have been passed by Court below on the basis of above mentioned compromise, applicant who is charge sheeted accused has now approached this Court by means of present application under section 482 Cr.P.C. seeking quashing of proceedings of above mentioned criminal case in view of compromise so entered between parties.
On the aforesaid premise, it is urged by learned counsel for applicant that once parties have entered into a compromise, no useful purpose shall be served by prolonging proceedings of above mentioned criminal case. Interest of justice shall better be served in case, entire proceedings of above mentioned criminal case are quashed by this Court itself in exercise of jurisdiction under Section 482 Cr. P. C, instead of relegating the parties to Court below.
Learned counsel for opposite party No.2 has supported the present application. He has invited the attention of Court to the short counter affidavit filed by opposite party-2 wherein the averments made in the affidavit filed in support of application under section 482 Cr.P.C. have been admitted. He further contends that once informant opposite party-2 has compromised with applicant, he now cannot have any grievance in case present application is allowed by this Court.
Learned A.G.A. representing State has also not opposed the present application.
This Court is not unmindful of the following judgements of Apex Court:
1. B.S. Joshi and others Vs. State of Haryana and another (2003)4 SCC 675
2. Nikhil Merchant Vs. Central Bureau of Investigation[2008)9 SCC 677]
3. Manoj Sharma Vs. State and others ( 2008) 16 SCC 1
4. Shiji @ Pappu and Others VS. Radhika and Another, 2011 (10) SCC 705
5. Gian Singh Vs. State of Punjab (2012) 10 SCC 303
6. K. Srinivas Rao Vs. D.A Deepa, (2013) 5 SCC226
7. Narindra Singh and others Vs. State of Punjab ( 2014) 6 SCC 466
8. Yogendra Yadav and Ors. Vs. State of Jharkhand and another 2014 (9) SCC 653
9. C.B.I. Vs. Maninder Singh (2016) 1 SCC 389
10. C.B.I. Vs. Sadhu Ram Singla and Others, (2017) 5 SCC 350
11. Parbatbhai Aahir @ Parbatbhai Bhimsinhbhai Karmur and Others Vs. State of Gujarat and annother, 2017 (9) SCC 641
12. Anita Maria Dias and Ors. Vs. State of Maharashtra and Others, (2018) 3 SCC 290
13. State of M.P. VS. Dhruv Gurjar and Another, (2019) 5 SCC 570
14. State of M.P. V/s Laxmi Narayan Ors., 2019 (5) SCC 688
15. Rampal Vs. State of Haryana, AIR online 2019 SC 1716
16. Arun Singh and Others VS. State of U.P. and Another (2020) 3 SCC 736
wherein the Apex Court has categorically held that compromise can be made between the parties even in respect of certain cognizable and non compoundable offences. However, Apex Court in State of M.P. Vs. Laxmi Narayan (Supra) has observed that no compromise can be made in respect of offences against society as they are not private in nature. Similarly in Ram Pal Vs. State of Haryana (Supra) it has been held that no compromise can be made in cases relating to rape and sexual assault. Reference may also be made to the decision given by this Court in Shaifullah and others Vs. State of U.P. And another [2013 (83) ACC 278] in which the law expounded by the Apex court in some of the aforesaid cases has been explained in detail.
Recently Apex court in Parbatbhai Aahir @ Parbatbhai Bhimsinhbhai Karmur (Supra) has laid down the following guidelines with regard to quashing of criminal proceedings as well compromise in criminal proceedings in paragraphs 16 to 16.10 of the judgement, which read as under:
“16. The broad principles which emerge from the precedents on the subject, may be summarised in the following propositions
16.1. Section 482 preserves the inherent powers of the High Court to prevent an abuse of the process of any court or to secure the ends of justice. The provision does not confer new powers. It only recognises and preserves powers which inhere in the High Court;
16.2. The invocation of the jurisdiction of the High Court to quash a First Information Report or a criminal proceeding on the ground that a settlement has been arrived at between the offender and the victim is not the same as the invocation of jurisdiction for the purpose of compounding an offence. While compounding an offence, the power of the court is governed by the provisions of Section 320 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973. The power to quash under Section 482 is attracted even if the offence is non-compoundable.
16.3. In forming an opinion whether a criminal proceeding or complaint should be quashed in exercise of its jurisdiction under Section 482, the High Court must evaluate whether the ends of justice would justify the exercise of the inherent power;
16.4. While the inherent power of the High Court has a wide ambit and plenitude it has to be exercised; (i) to secure the ends of justice or (ii) to prevent an abuse of the process of any court;
16.5. The decision as to whether a complaint or First Information Report should be quashed on the ground that the offender and victim have settled the dispute, revolves ultimately on the facts and circumstances of each case and no exhaustive elaboration of principles can be formulated;
16.6. In the exercise of the power under Section 482 and while dealing with a plea that the dispute has been settled, the High Court must have due regard to the nature and gravity of the offence. Heinous and serious offences involving mental depravity or offences such as murder, rape and dacoity cannot appropriately be quashed though the victim or the family of the victim have settled the dispute. Such offences are, truly speaking, not private in nature but have a serious impact upon society. The decision to continue with the trial in such cases is founded on the overriding element of public interest in punishing persons for serious offences;
16.7. As distinguished from serious offences, there may be criminal cases which have an overwhelming or predominant element of a civil dispute. They stand on a distinct footing in so far as the exercise of the inherent power to quash is concerned;
16.8. Criminal cases involving offences which arise from commercial, financial, mercantile, partnership or similar transactions with an essentially civil flavour may in appropriate situations fall for quashing where parties have settled the dispute;
16.9. In such a case, the High Court may quash the criminal proceeding if in view of the compromise between the disputants, the possibility of aconviction is remote and the continuation of a criminal proceeding would cause oppression and prejudice; and
16.10. There is yet an exception to the principle set out in propositions 16.8 and 16.9 above. Economic offences involving the financial and economic well-being of the state have implications which lie beyond the domain of a mere dispute between private disputants. The High Court would be justified in declining to quash where the offender is involved in an activity akin to a financial or economic fraud or misdemeanour. The consequences of the act complained of upon the financial or economic system will weigh in the balance.”
Considering the facts and circumstances of the case, as noted herein above, submissions made by the counsel for parties, law laid down by Apex Court as mentioned above, coupled with the fact that case in hand, relates to a cime which is not against society. This court is of the considered opinion that parties cannot be permitted to get the proceedings of above mentioned case terminated by way of compromise.Consequently, present application succeeds and is allowed.
Accordingly, proceedings of Case Crime No. 16 of 2020, under Sections 498A, 323, 504, 506 IPC, P.S. Mahila Thana, District Bareilly as well as entire proceedings of consequential Case No. 5289 of 2020 (State Vs. Nikhil Agarwal) are quashed on the basis of compromise.
No order as to costs.
Order Date :- 16.7.2021