Supreme Court Issues Notice: Can Sections 482 CrPC petition Be Dismissed Solely On The Ground That Discharge Application Is Pending?

The Supreme Court in the case C.V.K.Balakrishnan vs State Of Tamil Nadu observed and has issued notice in a Special Leave Petition which raised this issue. Can the High Court dismiss the said petition under Section 482 of Code of Criminal Procedure solely on the ground that a discharge application is pending? In the present case, the petitioners- accused had approached the Madras High Court wherein seeking quashing of criminal proceedings against them. It has been noticed by the court during the pendency of this petition, all the accused filed a petition for discharge under Section 239 of Code of Criminal Procedure before the Trial Court. Therefore, the court dismissed the petition in the plea observing that the accused cannot pursue parallel remedies.

Before the Apex Court, the counsel, Senior Advocate R.Basant who is appearing for the petitioners-accused, relied in the case Anand Kumar Mohatta and Another vs. State (NCT of Delhi), wherein contend that the High Court ought not to have dismissed the petition without going into merits of the case. The court held in the case Anand Kumar Mohatta that the High Courts can entertain a plea filed under Section 482 of Code of Criminal Procedure wherein quashing of FIR, even if the charge sheet is filed during the pendency of the said petition.

Therefore, there is nothing being in the words of this Section wherein restricting the exercise of the power of the Court to prevent the abuse of process of court or miscarriage of justice only being to the stage of the FIR. It being the settled principal of law that the High court can exercise jurisdiction under Section 482 of Code of Criminal Procedure even when the discharge application is being pending with the trial court. The said court initiated the proceedings against a person can be interfered with at the stage of FIR but not if it has been advanced, and the allegations have materialized into a charge sheet.

At the outset, it could be stated bthat the abuse of process caused by FIR stands aggravated if the FIR has taken the form of a charge sheet after investigation. The said power is undoubtedly being conferred to prevent abuse of process of power of any court. The bench comprising of Justice M R Shah and Justice C T Ravikumar observed in the order and stated that the said court issued the notice why the matter may not be remanded to the High Court to consider the application under Section 482 of Code of Criminal Procedure.

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