Alternative house no ground to challenge summons: High Court - ECAS Punjab

Alternative house no ground to challenge summons: High Court

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Saurabh Malik

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 10

A second house in another city is no ground for an accused to attack summoning orders in a complaint case on the pretext that he resides outside the area of jurisdiction of the Magistrate concerned, the Punjab and Haryana High Court stated today.

The ruling by Justice Sanjay Kumar came on a petition by Parmeshwari Devi and her son, who contested the Assembly elections from Sunam in 2007 as a Congress party candidate.

Trespass case

  • The ruling came on a petition by Parmeshwari Devi and her son, who contested the Assembly elections from Sunam in 2007 as a Congress candidate. They were seeking the quashing of a complaint filed against them for house trespass and other offences
  • They had also challenged an order passed by Sunam SDJM in 2012 summoning accused to face trial for offences

The two were seeking the quashing of a complaint filed against them and some other persons for house trespass and other offences under Sections 307, 452, 323, 148 and 149 of the Indian Penal Code.

They had also challenged an order dated March 19, 2012, passed by Sunam Sub-Divisional Judicial Magistrate summoning accused to face trial for offences punishable under Sections 452, 323, 148 and 149 of the Indian Penal Code.

Among other things, their counsel had contended that an FIR dated March 3, 2008, was registered upon Parmeshwari Devi's complaint against a respondent, who was complainant in the case in which the summons were issued, and other persons regarding the very same incident.

It culminated in acquittal judgment and, therefore, there could not be two trials for the same incident. It was added that the petitioner-son was a Chandigarh resident as evident from his passport.

As such, the Magistrate ought to have followed mandatory procedure posited by Section 202 of the CrPC, dealing with the summoning of an accused residing beyond the Magistrate's jurisdiction.

Justice Kumar asserted the petitioner's political base was Sunam and he admittedly owned a house there. He was a registered voter there.

He contested, and continues to contest, elections from there.

Justice Kumar asserted: "Merely because he also owns a house at Chandigarh would not mean that he resides beyond the area of jurisdiction of the Magistrate at Sunam, for the purposes of Section 202 CrPC..."

He added, "The objective of making an inquiry/investigation mandatory in the case of an accused who resides beyond the area of jurisdiction of the Magistrate concerned was to see that frivolous complaints were not filed against such persons who reside far away, so as to cause inconvenience to them."

Dismissing the petition after dealing with other contentions also, Justice Sanjay Kumar added the same would not be the situation in the case of an accused having a residence within the area of Magistrate's jurisdiction and another residence elsewhere.



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