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Sabina Bano And Others vs State Of U.P. Thru. Prin. Secy. Home Lko. … on 13 February, 2024

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Allahabad High Court

Sabina Bano And Others vs State Of U.P. Thru. Prin. Secy. Home Lko. … on 13 February, 2024

Author: Sangeeta Chandra

Bench: Sangeeta Chandra

HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE AT ALLAHABAD, LUCKNOW BENCH

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Neutral Citation No. – 2024:AHC-LKO:13314-DB

Court No. – 10

Case :- CRIMINAL MISC. WRIT PETITION No. – 7328 of 2023

Petitioner :- Sabina Bano And Others

Respondent :- State Of U.P. Thru. Prin. Secy. Home Lko. And Others

Counsel for Petitioner :- Abdul Samad

Counsel for Respondent :- G.A.,Shafat Ullah Khan

AND

Case :- CRIMINAL MISC. WRIT PETITION No. – 8101 of 2023

Petitioner :- Shahjahan Parveen And Another

Respondent :- State Of U.P. Thru. Prin. Secy. Home Lko. And Others

Counsel for Petitioner :- Shafat Ullah Khan

Counsel for Respondent :- G.A.,Abdul Samad

Hon’ble Mrs. Sangeeta Chandra,J.

Hon’ble Ajai Kumar Srivastava-I,J.

1. Heard learned counsel for the petitioners and learned A.G.A. for the State.

2. These writ petitions have been filed with the following main prayers :

“To issue a writ, order or direction in the nature of certiorari to quash the impugned First Information Report lodged by the informant/opposite party no.4 against the petitioners on 06.09.2023 in F.I.R. No.0263 of 2023, under Sections 147, 452, 308, 323, 380 of I.P.C., Police Station Aliganj, District Lucknow North (Commissionerate Lucknow).

Issue a writ, order or direction in the nature of certiorari thereby quashing the impugned First Information Report lodged on 06.09.2023 in F.I.R. No.0264 of 2023, under Sections 308, 323, 504 of I.P.C., Police Station Aliganj, District Lucknow North (Commissionerate Lucknow) against the petitioners and two unknown women.”

3. Learned counsel for the petitioners has pointed out the Mediation Centre’s report dated 01.02.2024. He says that settlement has been arrived at between the parties.

4. We have gone through the Mediation Centre’s report dated 01.02.2024 and the settlement agreement enclosed along with it. Sabina Bano, Ansar Ali, Sharafat Ali alias Sharfat ali, Rukhsana and Alimunnisha have been referred to as first party and Mohd. Idress has been referred to as Second party in settlement agreement. The parties have agreed to live separately in future and they have dissolved their marriage as per Talaqnama (talaq-e-hasan) dated 19.08.2023. Mohd. Idress has agreed to pay a sum of Rs.23,00,000/- (rupees twenty three lacs) to Sabina Bano towards one time full and final settlement of all claims including the claim for permanent alimony and mehar iddate. Ms. Sabina Bano has acknowledged a receipt of payment of Rs. 23,00,000/- (rupees twenty three lacs) and she has also expressed her willingness that she has no objections if this Court decides the instant petition.

5. It has also been agreed between the parties that Criminal Misc. Writ Petition No.8101 of 2023 “Shahjahan Parveen and another vs. State of U.P. and others be also settled as part of this settlement agreement. Shahjahan Parveen and Alimunnisha, who are parties in Criminal Misc. Writ Petition No.8101 of 2023, had presented themselves before Mediation and Conciliation Centre of this Court and had requested the mediators that they wish to settle their disputes as well. The parties had informed the mediation centre that they would not have any objections, if the this Court decides Criminal Misc. Writ Petition No.8101 of 2023 “Shahjahan Parveen and another vs. State of U.P. and others.

6. Learned A.G.A. submits that since the parties have settled their dispute by way of mediation, therefore, the impugned F.I.R. may be quashed.

7. Since the matter relates to matrimonial dispute on a minor issue, therefore, parties have decided to settle their dispute by way of a settlement agreement. Accordingly, a settlement agreement has been executed between the parties on 01.02.2024, which has been annexed as Annexure No.D to the instant petition.

8. Both the parties to the matrimonial dispute have arrived at a compromise. In such a situation, the Court has inherent jurisdiction to pass a suitable order as may be necessary to prevent the abuse of process of law and to secure the ends of justice.

9. In the case of B.S. Joshi and others vs. State of Haryana and others, (2003) 4 SCC 675 the Hon’ble Supreme Court by discussing earlier decision has discussed the principles of ends of justice particularly in contexts with matrimonial dispute. Relevant paras of the judgment is reproduced below:-

“12) The special features in such matrimonial matters are evident. It becomes the duty of the Court to encourage genuine settlements of matrimonial disputes.

13) The observations made by this Court, though in a slightly different context, in G.V. Rao v. L.H.V. Prasad Ors. [(2000) 3 SCC 693] are very apt for determining the approach required to be kept in view in matrimonial dispute by the courts, it was said that there has been an outburst of matrimonial disputes in recent times. Marriage is a sacred ceremony, the main purpose of which is to enable the young couple to settle down in life and live peacefully. But little matrimonial skirmishes suddenly erupt which often assume serious proportions resulting in commission of heinous crimes in which elders of the family are also involved with the result that those who could have counselled and brought about rapprochement are rendered helpless on their being arrayed as accused in the criminal case. There are many other reasons which need not be mentioned here for not encouraging matrimonial litigation so that the parties may ponder over their defaults and terminate their disputes amicably by mutual agreement instead of fighting it out in a court of law where it takes years and years to conclude and in that process the parties lose their “young” days in chasing their “cases” in different courts.

14) There is no doubt that the object of introducing Chapter XX-A containing Section 498A in the Indian Penal Code was to prevent the torture to a woman by her husband or by relatives of her husband. Section 498A was added with a view to punishing a husband and his relatives who harassor torture the wife to coerce her or her relatives to satisfy unlawful demands of dowry. The hyper-technical view would be counter productive and would act against interests of women and against the object for which this provision was added. There is every likelihood that non-exercise of inherent power to quash the proceedings to meet the ends of justice would prevent women from settling earlier. That is not the object of Chapter XXA of Indian Penal Code.

15) In view of the above discussion, we hold that the High Court in exercise of its inherent powers can quash criminal proceedings or FIR or complaint and Section 320 of the Code does not limit or affect the powers under Section 482 of the Code.”

10. In the case of Najmul Hasan and others vs. State of U.P. and others, 2018 (7) ADJ 245; this Court has observed in paras 15 16 that:-

“15) Considering the compromise arrived at between the parties on 07.05.2018, as extracted above in paragraph 5 and the categorical stand of the opposite party No.3 before this Court, we are of the considered opinion that no useful purpose would be served in continuation of criminal proceedings in pursuance of the impugned First Information Report lodged by opposite party No.3. Accordingly, it would be appropriate, in the facts and circumstances of the case, to quash the impugned First Information Report as continuation of the proceedings of the First Information Report would be a futile exercise.

16) We, therefore, allow the writ petition and quash the proceedings of the First Information Report dated 14.09.2017, vide Case Crime No.0404 of 2017, under Sections 498-A, 323, 377, 506 of Indian Penal Code and Section 3/4 of Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961 at Police Station Sahadatganj, District Lucknow, lodged by Smt.Anjum Rizvi-the opposite party No.3.”

11. The Hon’ble Apex Court in the case of Gian Singh vs. State of Punjab, 2012(10) SCC 303 has held in para-61 that;

“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 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 favour 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.”

12. In case of Jitendra Raghuvanshi and others vs. Babita Raghuvanshi and others; Hon’ble Supreme Court has again reiterated the findings as laid down in the case of B.S. Joshi (Supra).

13. In the case of Jayrajsinh Digvijaysinh Rana Vs. State of Gujarat and another [2012 CJ (SC) 896] in which the Apex Court has held in para 9 that if the cases are non compoundable under Section 320 Cr.P.C. even then the such a criminal matter can be quashed on the basis of mutual compromise where the chance of conviction is bleak. The relevant para 9 of the case is reproduced as under:-

“9. On going through the factual details, earlier decision, various offences Under Section 320 of the Code and invocation of Section 482 of the Code, we fully concur with the said conclusion. In the case on hand, irrespective of the earlier dispute between Respondent No. 2-the complainant and the Appellant being Accused No. 3 as well as Accused Nos. 1 and 2 subsequently and after getting all the materials,relevant details etc., the present Appellant (Accused No. 3) sworn an affidavit with bona fide intention securing the right, title and interest in favour of Respondent No. 2herein-the Complainant. In such bona fide circumstances, the power Under Section482 may be exercised. Further, in view of the settlement arrived at between Respondent No. 2-the complainant and the Appellant (Accused No. 3), there is no chance of recording a conviction insofar as the present Appellant is concerned and the entire exercise of trial is destined to be an exercise in futility. Inasmuch as the matter has not reached the stage of trial, we are of the view that the High Court, by exercising the inherent power Under Section 482 of the Code even in offences which are not compoundable Under Section 320, may quash the prosecution. However, as observed in Shiji (supra), the power Under Section 482 has to be exercised sparingly and only in cases where the High Court is, for reasons to be recorded, of the clear view that continuance of the prosecution would be nothing but an abuse of the process of law. In other words, the exercise of power must be for securing the ends of justice and only in cases where refusal to exercise that power may result in the abuse of the process of law.”

14. The Apex Court in the case of Shiji @ Pappu and Ors. Vs. Radhika and another [2011 CJ (SC) 239] has scrutinized the legal position in case of compromise in criminal cases in which the dispute was private in nature. In the matter of compromise continuation of proceeding will be sheer abuse of process of law and in this context the technicality should not be allowed to stand in the way of quashing criminal proceeding. Although the power should be used by the court sparingly.

15. Since, parties have amicably settled their disputes which arose due to matrimonial relation, in such a situation it will be futile to engage them in further litigation. After getting relief from legal proceedings both the parties may live their life happily. In present scenario the chance of ultimate conviction is also bleak and therefore no useful purpose is likely to be served by allowing criminal proceeding against the applicants. It may be sheer wastage of valuable time to Court also.

16. Accordingly, both writ petitions are allowed. The proceedings of the impugned F.I.R. registered as Case Crime No. 0263 of 2023, Under Sections 147, 452, 308, 323, 380 of the I.P.C., registered at Police Station – Aliganj, District- Lucknow North (Commissionerate Lucknow) as well as impugned F.I.R. registered Case Crime No.0264 of 2023, under Sections 308, 323, 504 of I.P.C., Police Station Aliganj, District Lucknow North (Commissionerate Lucknow) are hereby quashed.

Order Date :- 13.2.2024

Mahesh

 

 

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