गुरुवार, 8 अगस्त 2013

Quashing of FIR/Charge Sheet/Proceedings in non compoundable offences:

The supreme court in Gian Singh v . State of Punjab and Anr. along with other connected matters , 2012 AIR SCW 5333 (followed in  Dimpey Gujral v. Union Territory, Chandigarh AIR 2013 SC 518) after considering the relevant provisions of the Cr.P.C. and the decisions of the supreme court concluded (in para 57 of the judgment) as under:-

"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 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."

सोमवार, 5 अगस्त 2013

Disputes relating to ownership and possession

In an action for recovery of possession of immovable property, or for protecting possession thereof, upon the legal title to the property being established, the possession or occupation of the property by a person other than the holder of the legal title will be presumed to have been under and in subordination to the legal title, and it will be for the person resisting a claim for recovery of possession or claiming a right to continue in possession, to establish that he has such a right. To put it differently, wherever pleadings and documents establish title to a particular property and possession is in question, it will be for the person in possession to give sufficiently detailed pleadings, particulars and documents to support his claim in order to continue in possession. It would be imperative that one who claims possession must give the following :
(a) Who is or are the owner or owners of the property;
(b) Title of the property;
(c) Who is in possession of the title documents;
(d) Identity of the claimant or claimants to possession;
(e) The date of entry into possession;
(f) How he came into possession whether he purchased the property or inherited or got the same in gift or by any other method;
(g) In case he purchased the property, what is the consideration; if he has taken it on rent, how much is the rent, license fee or lease amount;
(h) If taken on rent, license fee or lease then insist on rent deed, license deed or lease deed;
(i) Who are the persons in possession/occupation or otherwise living with him, in what capacity; as family members, friends or servants etc.,
(j) Subsequent conduct, i.e., any event which might have extinguished his entitlement to possession or caused shift therein; and
(k) Basis of his claim not to deliver possession but continue in possession.

शनिवार, 9 जुलाई 2011

Supreme Court on Tenancy Disputes

‘It is a matter of common knowledge that lakhs of flats and houses are kept locked for years, particularly in big cities and metropolitan cities, because the owners are not certain that even after expiry of lease or licence period, the house, flat or the apartment would be vacated.’ It is remark of  the apex court  in Rameshwari Devi v. Nirmala Devi decided on 4/7/2011.
Speaking for the bench, Justice Dalveer Bhandari said: ‘It takes decades for the final determination of the controversy and the wrongdoers (unscrupulous litigants) are never punished. Pragmatic approach of the courts would partly solve the housing problem of this country.’
The court made the observation while dismissing an appeal by Rameshwari Devi and others staking claim over the property of Nirmala Devi and others of a colony in south Delhi. Describing the appellant as ‘unscrupulous litigants’, the court imposed a cost of Rs.2 lakh on them.

The court said the situation has come to such a pass because going by cost (risk)-benefit ratio, a person engaged in frivolous litigation finds it profitable in procrastinating the litigation.
The deceitful acts of such litigants get aided by the reluctance of the courts to ‘order restitution and actual costs incurred by the other side’, the apex court observed.
The Supreme Court remarked that ‘Unfortunately, our courts are flooded with these cases because there is an inherent profit for the wrongdoers in our system’ .... It is happening because it is the general impression that even if ultimately an unauthorised person is thrown out of the premises, the court would not ordinarily punish the unauthorised person by awarding realistic and actual mesne (average) profits, imposing costs and ordering prosecution.’
Asking the civil courts not to grant ex-parte injunctions without hearing the other side, the judgment said that even if injunction had to be granted, it should be time-bound and for a short period.
In para 52 of the judgment the apex court issued following commandants that the trial courts in civil matters must follow in dealing with such cases:
"52.    The  main  question   which  arises  for  our  consideration   is whether  the  prevailing delay in  civil  litigation  can  be curbed?

In   our   considered   opinion   the   existing   system   can   be drastically   changed   or   improved   if   the   following   steps   are taken by the trial courts while dealing with the civil trials-
   A.    Pleadings   are   foundation   of   the   claims   of parties.     Civil   litigation   is   largely   based   on
documents.     It   is   the   bounden   duty   and  obligation   of   the   trial   judge   to   carefully scrutinize,  check  and verify the pleadings  and   the documents filed by the parties.   This must be done immediately after civil suits are filed.
B.    The   Court   should   resort   to   discovery   and production   of   documents   and   interrogatories
at   the   earliest   according   to   the   object   of   the  Code.  If this exercise is carefully carried out, it
would   focus   the   controversies   involved   in   the  case and help the court in arriving at truth of  the matter and doing substantial justice.
C.    Imposition   of   actual,   realistic   or   proper   costs  and   or   ordering   prosecution   would   go   a   long  way in controlling the tendency of introducing  false   pleadings   and   forged   and   fabricated documents   by   the   litigants.     Imposition   of  heavy   costs   would   also   control   unnecessary
 adjournments   by   the   parties.       In   appropriate prosecution otherwise it may not be possible to
 maintain   purity   and   sanctity   of   judicial   proceedings.
D.    The  Court  must adopt  realistic and pragmatic approach in granting mesne profits.  The Court
 must   carefully   keep   in   view   the   ground  realities while granting mesne profits.
E.    The   courts   should   be   extremely   careful   and  cautious   in   granting   ex-parte   ad   interim
 injunctions   or   stay   orders.     Ordinarily   short notice   should   be   issued   to   the   defendants   or
respondents   and  only  after   hearing   concerned  parties appropriate orders should be passed.
F.    Litigants   who   obtained   ex-parte   ad   interim  injunction   on   the   strength   of   false   pleadings  and   forged   documents   should   be   adequately  punished.   No one should be allowed to abuse
the process of the court.
G.    The principle of restitution be fully applied in a pragmatic   manner   in   order   to   do   real   and
substantial justice.
H.    Every   case   emanates   from   a   human   or   a commercial problem and the Court must make
serious   endeavour   to   resolve   the   problem  within the framework of law and in accordance
  with   the   well   settled   principles   of   law   and  justice. 
I.    If   in   a   given   case,   ex   parte   injunction   is  granted,  then  the  said application for grant of
  injunction   should   be   disposed   of   on   merits,  after   hearing   both   sides   as   expeditiously   as
  may be possible on a priority basis and undue   adjournments should be avoided.
  J.    At the time of filing of the plaint, the trial court should   prepare   complete   schedule   and   fix dates   for   all   the   stages   of   the   suit,   right   from filing         of         the         written         statement         till
 pronouncement   of   judgment   and   the   courts should   strictly   adhere   to   the   said   dates   and  the   said   time   table   as   far   as   possible.     If   any  interlocutory application is filed then the same
be   disposed   of   in   between   the   said   dates   of hearings fixed in the said suit itself so that the
date   fixed   for   the   main   suit   may   not   be disturbed."

The court  said that the imposition of ‘actual, realistic or proper cost and ordering prosecution would go a long way in controlling the tendency of introducing false pleadings and forged and fabricated documents by the litigants’ and thus save the ‘scarce and valuable time’ of the court.

सोमवार, 18 अक्तूबर 2010

Electricity theft- criminal and civil liability

Electricity Act, 2003 – S. 127 – Theft of electricity – Even if final report is submitted in criminal case, Consumer still liable for payment of dues for alleged illegal use - 2010 (4) AWC 4074

Development charges

In absence of rules regulations or bylaws , Development Authority can not demand development charges - 2010 (4) AWC 3767

रविवार, 26 सितंबर 2010

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शुक्रवार, 11 जून 2010

जन्मतिथि परिवर्तन

उच्चतम न्यायलय ने पंजाब हरयाणा हाई कोर्ट बनाम मेघराज गर्ग में दिनांक २० मई, २०१० को यह निर्णय दिया है कि नौकरी पाने के बाद यदि विद्यालय प्रमाण पत्र में जन्मतिथि संशोधित की जाती है तो सरकार या सम्बंधित विभाग उस संशोधित जन्मतिथि के अनुसार सेवा पुस्तिका में संशोधन करने के लिए बाध्य नहीं है।
इस मामले में एक न्यायिक अधिकारी ने नौकरी पाने के दस साल बाद विश्वविद्यालय के प्रमाण पत्र में अपनी जन्मतिथि बदलवाया था और राज्य सरकार तथा उच्च न्यायलय प्रशासन से यह अनुरोध किया था कि प्रमाणपत्र में संशोधित जन्मतिथि के अनुरूप उसकी सेवा पुस्तिका में भी जन्मतिथि संशोधित किया जाए
प्रार्थना पत्र अस्वीकार होने पर उसने दीवानी वाद प्रस्तुत किया जिसे अधीनस्थ न्यायलय तथा उच्च न्यायलय ने भी उसके पक्ष में डिक्री करते हुए सेवा पुस्तिका में जन्म तिथि संशोधित करने का आदेश पारित किया था। उच्चतम न्यायलय ने उच्च न्यायलय प्रशासन की अपील मंजूर करते हुए वाद को अस्वीकार एवं डिक्री को अपास्त कर दिया।