There were a lot of clashes in the opinion when talks concerning the validity of criminal complaints were raising. This is only when the allegations look as if of civil kind. Many debates were coming up especially after the Supreme Court’s verdict on the Kamal Shivaji Pokarnekar V. State of Maharashtra case, which concluded that the civil aspect of an offense cannot be considered as the basis of quashing the complaint.
Kamal Shivaji Pokarnekar V. State of Maharashtra
Under the given case, the aggrieved party had blamed the developers of counterfeiting. They also prepared fake documents which acted as the foundation of a development contract. The prosecution of allegations against the suspect party was happening under Section 420, 465, 467, 471 & 468 of IPC (Indian Penal Code). After the magistrate held the case under police investigation, the investigation concluded the offense of civil kind.
The prestigious Trial Court ordered summon against the accused party. And in response to that, the accused party filed a Writ Petition in the High Court. After analyzing the investigation reports and evidence, the court quashed the case. This was taking place only after considering the offense as a civil offense. Under Section 482 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 the proceeding was done. High Court gave a clarification that the offense was proving to be of the civil nature. Hence, holding the accused party guilty would be against the provisions of the law.
The Final Judgment
On the plea of the complainant, the case found its conclusion at Hon’ble SC after its forwarding. However, on the basis of wrong interpretation of the facts and situations, the case saw its scrapping by the High Court. However, on the grounds of the offense being civil in nature, a case cannot be scrap.
The final judgment indicated that:
- The only requirement for the Hon’ble HC at the platform of taking awareness is an evaluation. Whether a prima facie case has been made against the accused is debatable. The High Court doesn’t need to evaluate the consequence, merits or de-merits generated out of the evidence.
- The allegations are of repressible nature for the High Court only if the allegations do not amount to an offense. Further, the judgment induced clarification stating that ‘meticulous analysis’ regarding the evaluation of conviction is not required at the pre-trial stage. If the essentials of an offense are mentionable on the reading of the complaint, the Hon’ble HC will have no right to object.
- The Court stated that when the issuance of the complaint discloses the alleged offense against the accused on the prima facie basis, then the authenticity of the complaint can be concluded only in the Trial. The Courts are not to indulge in the merits and demerits of the disputations on the side of the accused.
- Concluding the case, the Supreme Court clarifies that complaints or allegations are not repressible or invalid on the basis of the offense being of civil nature. When the dimensions of the offense suspected against the alleged are the prima-facie in the written grievance, the illegitimate proceeding will not be prescribed.