When Accused did not appear before the High Court, What did the Supreme Court Held?

Must Read

New Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) Amendments Are Valid Says Supreme Court

On Tuesday, the Supreme Court upheld the amendments in the insolvency and bankruptcy code which makes it mandatory for a minimum of 100 or 10% of home buyers of a project to initiate insolvency proceedings against a builder for not delivering flats or commercial shops on time.

[HUL – Sebamed Ad War] Bombay High Court Passed Injunction; Permits Sebamed Ad Against HUL’s Dove

The ad war between the German personal care brand Sebamed and the consumer goods giant Hindustan Unilever Ltd (HUL) has come to an end. On January 19th, Bombay High Court passed an injunction order permitting the Sebamed ad against Hindustan Unilever’s Dove without any changes. It was observed that Sebamed ads were backed with evidence-based data. However, Sebamed was ordered to put an end to its advertisement that compared HUL soap bars Lux, Pears, and Santoor with Rin and detergent category.

Bombay High Court Says White Collar Crimes Are More Dangerous Than Murder and Dacoity

The Aurangabad Bench of the Bombay High Court rejected 4 petitions of 4 businessmen after observing that white-collar crimes are more serious than murder and dacoity. The businesspersons were booked for fraud of evading GST by producing fake invoices.

Right To Protection Can’t Be Granted To Married Woman Involved in Live-in Relationship: Allahabad High Court

The Bench of Allahabad High Court dismissed a petition of a live-in couple, observing that a married woman in a live-in relationship is not entitled to any sort of legal protection whatsoever. The Court remarked that they are adults and should live as ‘husband and wife’ if they want no one to interfere in their lives.

Police To Decide on the Entry of Farmers To Delhi on Republic Day Says Supreme Court

While the Supreme Court heard a plea seeking an injunction against the tractor rally that is scheduled for January 26th, it held that it is the decision of the Delhi Police officers to see whether the protesting farmers should get entry into Delhi on Republic Day.

[Sushant Singh Rajput Case]: Republic TV & Times Now Hindered Investigation Probe Says Bombay HC

In November last year, the Court had reserved its judgement on the PILs that came from 8 former police officers from Maharashtra, lawyers, activists and NGOs, seeking restraining orders against the media trial in the Sushant Singh Rajput case.

Follow us

The Supreme Court 5th July 2019 held that when an accused in a case did not enter an appearance before High Court, the High Court should not have decided the case on merits. Instead, it should have issued a second notice to the accused or directed the High Court Legal Services Committee to appoint an advocate or taken the assistance of an Amicus Curiae.

Judgement

The judgment was rendered by a Bench of Justices R Banumathi and AS Bopanna in an appeal preferred by the accused. The accused had challenged the orders passed by the Madras High Court by which the High Court has reversed the acquittal of the appellant-accused and convicted him under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act.

Court Proceedings

The appellant-accused and the respondent-complainant were friends. The appellant-accused borrowed a sum of Rs. 30,000 from the respondent-complainant. The appellant-accused issued a post-dated cheque drawn on Canara Bank.

The respondent-complainant presented the cheque in his Cooperative Bank Account for collection. However, the cheque was returned from the bank due to insufficient funds. The respondent-complainant sent a statutory notice to the appellant-accused. Thereafter, the respondent-complainant filed the complaint before the Judicial Magistrate.

After examining the evidence, the trial court held that the amount was borrowed in the year 2001 and the cheque was presented for collection after three years of borrowing the loan. The trial court took the view that the cheque was valid for six months and that the cheque was not presented within a period of six months from the date of payment of the amount and issuance of the cheque. It, therefore, held that the charges levelled against the appellant-accused are not proved and on those findings, the trial court acquitted the appellant-accused.

Being aggrieved, the respondent-complainant preferred appeal before the High Court. In the appeal before the High Court, there was no representation for the appellant-accused. Upon hearing the respondent-complainant, the High Court held that the cheque was returned due to “insufficient funds” and not “as time-barred cheque”.

The High Court further found that the respondent-complainant has proved the statutory requirements and held that the findings of the trial court are erroneous. The High Court, therefore, set aside the judgment of the trial court and convicted the appellant-accused under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act.

This led to the current appeal before the Supreme Court.

Senior Counsel S Nagamuthu appearing on behalf of the appellant placed reliance on the judgment in KS Panduranga vs. the State of Karnataka [(2013) 3 SCC 721] and submitted that in the absence of the counsel for the appellant-accused, the High Court should not have decided the appeal on merits. He, therefore, prayed for remitting the matter to the High Court for fresh consideration on merits.

Interestingly, before the Supreme Court, the respondent-complainant though served, did not enter appearance. The Supreme Court Legal Services Committee, therefore nominated Advocate Pahlad Singh Sharma who appeared and argued for the respondent.

The Court after hearing the parties held that when the accused had not entered an appearance, the Court should not have decided the case on merits without appointing an Amicus Curiae to defend the accused. This was more so since the accused had the benefit of acquittal by the trial court. The High Court should have issued a second notice to the appellant-accused or asked High Court Legal Services Committee to appoint an advocate or the High Court could have taken the assistance of amicus curiae, the Supreme Court said.

Thus, the Court held that the High Court erred in reversing the acquittal without affording any opportunity to the appellant-accused or by appointing an amicus curiae to argue the matter on his behalf.

It, therefore, allowed the appeal and remitted the matter to the High Court for consideration on merits.

“The High Court shall afford sufficient opportunity to both parties and decide the matter afresh in accordance with law”, the Supreme Court made it clear.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Latest News

New Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) Amendments Are Valid Says Supreme Court

On Tuesday, the Supreme Court upheld the amendments in the insolvency and bankruptcy code which makes it mandatory for a minimum of 100 or 10% of home buyers of a project to initiate insolvency proceedings against a builder for not delivering flats or commercial shops on time.

[HUL – Sebamed Ad War] Bombay High Court Passed Injunction; Permits Sebamed Ad Against HUL’s Dove

The ad war between the German personal care brand Sebamed and the consumer goods giant Hindustan Unilever Ltd (HUL) has come to an end. On January 19th, Bombay High Court passed an injunction order permitting the Sebamed ad against Hindustan Unilever’s Dove without any changes. It was observed that Sebamed ads were backed with evidence-based data. However, Sebamed was ordered to put an end to its advertisement that compared HUL soap bars Lux, Pears, and Santoor with Rin and detergent category.

Bombay High Court Says White Collar Crimes Are More Dangerous Than Murder and Dacoity

The Aurangabad Bench of the Bombay High Court rejected 4 petitions of 4 businessmen after observing that white-collar crimes are more serious than murder and dacoity. The businesspersons were booked for fraud of evading GST by producing fake invoices.

Right To Protection Can’t Be Granted To Married Woman Involved in Live-in Relationship: Allahabad High Court

The Bench of Allahabad High Court dismissed a petition of a live-in couple, observing that a married woman in a live-in relationship is not entitled to any sort of legal protection whatsoever. The Court remarked that they are adults and should live as ‘husband and wife’ if they want no one to interfere in their lives.

Police To Decide on the Entry of Farmers To Delhi on Republic Day Says Supreme Court

While the Supreme Court heard a plea seeking an injunction against the tractor rally that is scheduled for January 26th, it held that it is the decision of the Delhi Police officers to see whether the protesting farmers should get entry into Delhi on Republic Day.

[Sushant Singh Rajput Case]: Republic TV & Times Now Hindered Investigation Probe Says Bombay HC

In November last year, the Court had reserved its judgement on the PILs that came from 8 former police officers from Maharashtra, lawyers, activists and NGOs, seeking restraining orders against the media trial in the Sushant Singh Rajput case.

Women Advocates Move To Supreme Court Against the Delhi HC Orders on Resuming Physical Hearing

Another writ petition has been filed by women advocates in the Supreme Court against the decision of the Delhi HC of directing the expansion of physical hearing of cases within the National Capital Territory of Delhi without giving an option to litigants to be represented by their lawyers virtually.

Gujarat High Court Allows Report Filed by Official Liquidator for Dissolution of the Company

The present report had been filed by the Official Liquidator for the dissolution of M/s AtRo Limited under the provisions of Section 497 (6)...

[WhatsApp Privacy Policy Row] It’s a Private App, Don’t Use It; Says Delhi High Court

On Monday, while hearing a petition regarding the privacy policy of WhatsApp, the Delhi High Court said, “It is a private app. Don't join it. It is a voluntary thing, don't accept it. Use some other app.”

Madras High Court Asks the State To Reconsider Number of Seats Allotted for Bcm Category

Mr. Shakkiya filed a Writ Petition under Article 226 of the Indian Constitution to issue a Writ of Mandamus. The petition sought to direct...

More Articles Like This

- Advertisement -