Ahmad Ali Quraishi vs The State Of Uttar Pradesh on 30 January, 2020


Supreme Court of India

Ahmad Ali Quraishi vs The State Of Uttar Pradesh on 30 January, 2020

Author: Ashok Bhushan

Bench: Ashok Bhushan, Navin Sinha

                                                                 REPORTABLE


                                IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
                                CRIMINAL APPELLATE JURISDICTION
                                CRIMINAL APPEAL NO. 138 OF 2020
                          (arising out of SLP(Crl.) No.3974 of 2018)


                      AHMAD ALI QURAISHI AND ANR.           ... APPELLANTS


                                             VERSUS

                      THE STATE OF UTTAR PRADESH
                      & ANR.                                ... RESPONDENTS




                                          J U D G M E N T

ASHOK BHUSHAN, J.

1. This appeal has been filed challenging the

order of the High Court dated 21.02.2018 by

which the application under Section 482 CrPC

filed by the appellants accused to quash the

Signature Not Verified proceedings of Complaint Case No.1 of 2017 has
Digitally signed by
ARJUN BISHT
Date: 2020.01.30
15:56:42 IST
Reason:

1
been rejected. Aggrieved by the order of the

High Court, this appeal has been filed.

2. Brief facts of the case necessary to be noted

to decide this appeal are: ­

(i) The appellants accused and the

respondent No.2 complainant belongs to

same family and are neighbours. The

father of the accused Anwarul Haq has

filed O.S.No.744/2015 against the

complainant in the court of Civil judge

(Junior Division) with regard to

partition of properties which suit is

still pending. Suit between the parties

led to several altercations among the

parties.

(ii) On 19.07.2016, a quarrel took between

the parties. The police went on the

spot of incident on 19.07.2016 itself

and initiated proceedings under Section

2
151,107 and 116 Cr.P.C. Proceedings

were drawn under Cr.P.C. against both

the parties to maintain peace at the

spot.

(iii) On 29.08.2016, an application under

Section 156(3) Cr.P.C. was filed by the

complainant Sajjad Quraishi against the

accused Ahmad Ali Quraishi, and Liyakar

Ali Quraishi as well as their father

Anwarul Haq and their three other

brothers referring to incident dated

19.07.2016 at about 06:00 PM.

Allegation in the complaint was that

two daughters of complainant Firdaus

Bano and Gulishta Bano had gone to

public hand pump outside the house of

the complainant for fetching water at

that time Ahmad Ali and Liyakat Ali

accused indulge in indecent gestures

3
towards them and started pressing their

breasts. The daughter Firdaus Bano

sustained nail injuries. The girls were

also beaten. On alarm being raised the

complainant, his wife and others

reached the spot and intervened.

(iv) It was further alleged that on the same

day, Anwarul Haq, the accused and their

brothers with common intentions

forcibly entered the house of

complainant and hurld filthy abuses and

starting beating the daughters inside

the house. Application further alleged

that applicant gave information about

the incident but neither application

was taken nor medical got conducted.

Application was also sent through

Registered Post to Superintendent of

Police, Jaunpur, D.G.P., Lucknow and

4
National Human Right Commission, New

Delhi. In the application, offence

alleged against accused were under

Section 323, 354, 504, 506, 452 IPC and

Section 4 of POSCO Act.

(v) On the application, Misc. Case No.14 of

2016 was registered. The learned

Additional District/Sessions Judge

(POSCO Act) considered the application

of complainant and by order dated

14.10.2016 rejected the application

holding that there are no sufficient

grounds to register the case against

the appellants. Learned Sessions Judge

also noticed that according to report

of the Police Station proceeding under

Sections 151, 107 and 116 Cr.P.C. has

been initiated in respect of the said

incident.

5

(vi) Complainant filed a Criminal Revision

in the High court. The High Court vide

its judgment dated 22.11.2016 did not

interfere with the order rejecting the

application, however, it observed that

applicant has an alternative remedy by

way of filing an appropriate

application before the concerned Court

as per provisions of Code of Criminal

Procedure.

(vii) The application having already sent to

the National Human Rights Commission,

On the instruction of National Human

Rights Commission, the Superintendent

of Police directed the complaint to be

enquired by letter dated 07.11.2016

addressed to the C.O.(City), Jaunpur to

enquire the complaint. The C.O. (City),

Jaunpur conducted the enquiry, recorded

the statements of various persons

6
including the daughters of complainant

Firdaus Bano and Gulishtan Bano as well

as the accused and submitted the report

on 11.12.2016 opining that allegations

labelled by the complainant have not

been proved in the enquiry.

(viii) The complainant thereafter filed a

complaint Case No.1 of 2017 dated

04.10.2017 repeating the same

allegations against the appellants and

other accused which were made in his

application under Section 156(3)

Cr.P.C.

(ix) The Learned Sessions Judge by order

dated 19.12.2017 summoned the

appellants under Section 323, 353, 504,

506 IPC and Section 7/8 POSCO Act. The

appellant filed an application under

Section 482 Cr.P.C. in the High Court

7
praying for quashing the entire

proceeding of Complaint Case No.1 of

2017 as well as the summoning order.

The application has been dismissed by

the High Court by the impugned judgment

dated 21.02.2018 aggrieved against

which judgment this appeal has been

filed.

3. Learned Counsel for the appellant in support

of his case submits that dispute regarding

property between the father of the appellant

and the complainant is going on with regard to

which Civil Suit No.744 of 2015, Anwarul Haq

versus Sajjad Ali is pending in the court of

Civil Judge(Junior Division). To put pressure

on the appellant and to settle the property

dispute pending in the court of Civil Judge,

the complainants have filed frivolous

complaints against the appellants and other

8
family members before the Human Rights

Commission, Police Authorities as well as in

the Court of Sessions Judge.

4. Sessions Judge had already rejected his

application under Section 156(3) Cr.P.C. on

29.08.2016. The complaint sent by the

complainant to the Human Rights Commission

resulted in enquiry by Deputy Superintendent

of Police and report was submitted that no

such incident took place as alleged. In spite

of the rejection of the application and

nothing having been found against the

appellant in the enquiry, the complaint Case

No.1 of 2017 has been filed. The complaint by

the complainant is nothing but abuse of the

process of Court which has been actuated to

settle personal score and to put pressure on

the appellants and his father to settle in the

property dispute.

9

5.It is submitted that High Court failed to

consider the sequence of events and fact

situation of the present case in which the

complaint deserved to be quashed. It is

submitted that the complaint is manifestly

attended with mala fide and has been

maliciously instituted with ulterior motives.

6.It is further submitted that for the same

incident police has already initiated

proceedings under Section 151, 107,115 Cr.P.C.

against both the parties and they have been

asked to maintain the peace. The incident as

alleged against the appellant is imaginary and

completely false.

7.Learned counsel for the complainant has

supported the order of the High Court and

submits that High Court has rightly refused to

10
quash the proceedings. It is submitted that

High Court in exercise of jurisdiction under

Section 482 Cr.P.C. shall not examine the

question as to whether the allegations made

against the appellant in the complaint are

true or false nor High Court will assess the

evidence at this stage.

8. A Counter Affidavit has also been filed by

the State of Uttar Pradesh bringing on record

the application filed by complainant under

Section 156(3) Cr.P.C. dated 29.08.2016 as

well as the enquiry report dated 11.12.2016

and submitted to Superintendent of Police,

Jaupur as Annexure­CA/2.

9. We have considered the submissions of learned

counsel for the parties and perused the

record.

11

10. Before we enter into facts of the present

case and submissions made by learned counsel

for the parties, it is necessary to look into

scope and ambit of Inherent Jurisdiction which

is exercised by the High Court under Section

482 Cr.P.C. This Court had occasion to

consider the scope and jurisdiction of Section

482 Cr.P.C. This Court in State of Haryana

and others versus Bhajan Lal and others, 1992

suppl. (1) SCC 335, had elaborately considered

the scope and ambit of Section 482 Cr.P.C./

Article 226 of the Constitution in the context

of quashing the criminal proceedings. In

paragraph 102, this Court enumerated seven

categories of cases where power can be

exercised under Article 226/Section 482

Cr.P.C. by the High Court for quashing the

criminal Proceedings. Paragraph 102 is as

follows: ­

12
“102. In the backdrop of the
interpretation of the various
relevant provisions of the Code
under Chapter XIV and of the
principles of law enunciated by
this Court in a series of decisions
relating to the exercise of the
extraordinary power under Article
226
or the inherent powers under
Section 482 of the Code which we
have extracted and reproduced
above, we give the following
categories of cases by way of
illustration wherein such power
could be exercised either to
prevent abuse of the process of any
court or otherwise to secure the
ends of justice, though it may not
be possible to lay down any
precise, clearly defined and
sufficiently channelised adn
inflexible guidelines or rigid
formulae and to give an exhaustive
list of myriad kinds of cases
wherein such power should be
exercised.

(1) Where the allegations made
in the first information report
or the complaint, even if they
are taken at their face value and
accepted in their entirety do not
prima facie constitute any
offence or make out a case
against the accused.

(2) Where the allegations in
the first information report and
other materials, if any,

13
accompanying the FIR do not
disclose a cognizable offence,
justifying an investigation by
police officers under Section
156(1)
of the Code except under
an order of a Magistrate within
the purview of Section 155(2) of
the Code.

(3) Where the uncontroverted
allegations made in the FIR or
complaint and the evidence
collected in support of the same
do not disclose the commission of
any offence and make out a case
against the accused.

(4) Where, the allegations in
the FIR do not constitute a
cognizable offence but constitute
only a non­cognizable offence, no
investigation is permitted by a
police officer without an order
of a Magistrate as contemplated
under Section 155(2) of the Code.

(5) Where the allegations made
in the FIR or complaint are so
absurd and inherently improbable
on the basis of which no prudent
person can ever reach a just
conclusion that there is
sufficient ground for proceeding
against the accused.

(6) Where ther is an express
legal bar engrafted in any of the
provisions of the Code or the
concerned Act(under which a
criminal proceeding is

14
instituted) to the institution
and continuance of the
proceedings and/o where there is
specific provision in the Code or
the concerned Act, providing
efficacious redress for the
grievance of the aggrieved party.

(7) Where a criminal proceeding
is manifestly attended with
malafide and/or where the
proceeding is maliciously
instituted with an ulterior
motive for wreaking vengeance on
the accused and with a view to
spite him due to private and
personal grudge.”

11. This Court in Vineet Kumar and others

versus State of Uttar Pradesh and another,

(2017) 13 SCC 369, had considered the

jurisdiction of High Court under Section 482

Cr.P.C. In the above case also, the Additional

Civil Judicial Magistrate had summoned the

accused for offence under Section 452, 376,

and 323 IPC and the Criminal Revision against

the said order was dismissed by the District

Judge.

15

12. This Court time and again has examined

the scope of jurisdiction of the High Court

under Section 482 Cr.P.C. and laid down

several principles which govern the exercise

of jurisdiction of the High Court under

Section 482 Cr.P.C. A three­Judge Bench of

this Court in State of Karnataka v. L.

Muniswamy, (1977) 2 SCC 699, held that the

High Court is entitled to quash a proceeding

if it comes to the conclusion that allowing

the proceeding to continue would be an abuse

of the process of the court or that the ends

of justice require that the proceeding ought

to be quashed. In para 7 of the judgment, the

following has been stated: (SCC p. 703)

“7. … In the exercise of this
wholesome power, the High Court is
entitled to quash a proceeding if it
comes to the conclusion that
allowing the proceeding to continue
would be an abuse of the process of

16
the court or that the ends of
justice require that the proceeding
ought to be quashed. The saving of
the High Court’s inherent powers,
both in civil and criminal matters,
is designed to achieve a salutary
public purpose which is that a court
proceeding ought not to be permitted
to degenerate into a weapon of
harassment or persecution. In a
criminal case, the veiled object
behind a lame prosecution, the very
nature of the material on which the
structure of the prosecution rests
and the like would justify the High
Court in quashing the proceeding in
the interest of justice. The ends of
justice are higher than the ends of
mere law though justice has got to
be administered according to laws
made by the legislature. The
compelling necessity for making
these observations is that without a
proper realisation of the object and
purpose of the provision which seeks
to save the inherent powers of the
High Court to do justice, between the
State and its subjects, it would be
impossible to appreciate the width
and contours of that salient
jurisdiction.”

13. A three­Judge Bench in State of Karnataka

v. M. Devendrappa, (2002) 3 SCC 89, had the

occasion to consider the ambit of Section 482

17
Cr.P.C. By analysing the scope of Section 482

Cr.P.C., this Court laid down that authority

of the Court exists for advancement of justice

and if any attempt is made to abuse that

authority so as to produce injustice, the

Court has power to prevent abuse. It further

held that Court would be justified to quash

any proceeding if it finds that

initiation/continuance of it amounts to abuse

of the process of court or quashing of these

proceedings would otherwise serve the ends of

justice. The following was laid down in para

6: (SCC p. 94)

“6. … All courts, whether civil or
criminal possess, in the absence of
any express provision, as inherent in
their constitution, all such powers
as are necessary to do the right and
to undo a wrong in course of
administration of justice on the
principle quando lex aliquid alicui
concedit, concedere videtur et id
sine quo res ipsae esse non potest
(when the law gives a person anything

18
it gives him that without which it
cannot exist). While exercising
powers under the section, the court
does not function as a court of
appeal or revision. Inherent
jurisdiction under the section though
wide has to be exercised sparingly,
carefully and with caution and only
when such exercise is justified by
the tests specifically laid down in
the section itself. It is to be
exercised ex debito justitiae to do
real and substantial justice for the
administration of which alone courts
exist. Authority of the court exists
for advancement of justice and if any
attempt is made to abuse that
authority so as to produce injustice,
the court has power to prevent abuse.
It would be an abuse of process of
the court to allow any action which
would result in injustice and prevent
promotion of justice. In exercise of
the powers court would be justified
to quash any proceeding if it finds
that initiation/continuance of it
amounts to abuse of the process of
court or quashing of these
proceedings would otherwise serve the
ends of justice. When no offence is
disclosed by the complaint, the court
may examine the question of fact.
When a complaint is sought to be
quashed, it is permissible to look
into the materials to assess what the
complainant has alleged and whether
any offence is made out even if the
allegations are accepted in toto.”

19

14. Further in para 8 the following was

stated: (Devendrappa case, SCC p. 95)

“8. … Judicial process should not be
an instrument of oppression, or,
needless harassment. Court should be
circumspect and judicious in
exercising discretion and should take
all relevant facts and circumstances
into consideration before issuing
process, lest it would be an
instrument in the hands of a private
complainant to unleash vendetta to
harass any person needlessly. At the
same time the section is not an
instrument handed over to an accused
to short­circuit a prosecution and
bring about its sudden death. The
scope of exercise of power under
Section 482 of the Code and the
categories of cases where the High
Court may exercise its power under it
relating to cognizable offences to
prevent abuse of process of any court
or otherwise to secure the ends of
justice were set out in some detail by
this Court in State of Haryana v.
Bhajan Lal
.”

15. In Sunder Babu v. State of T.N., (2009)

14 SCC 244, this Court was considering the

challenge to the order of the Madras High

20
Court where application was under Section 482

Cr.P.C. to quash criminal proceedings under

Section 498­A IPC and Section 4 of the Dowry

Prohibition Act, 1961. It was contended before

this Court that the complaint filed was

nothing but an abuse of the process of law and

allegations were unfounded. The prosecuting

agency contested the petition filed under

Section 482 Cr.P.C. taking the stand that a

bare perusal of the complaint discloses

commission of alleged offences and, therefore,

it is not a case which needed to be allowed.

The High Court accepted the case of the

prosecution and dismissed the application.

This Court referred to the judgment in Bhajan

Lal’s case and held that the case fell within

Category 7. The Apex Court relying on Category

7 has held that the application under Section

482 deserved to be allowed and it quashed the

proceedings.

21

16. After considering the earlier several

judgments of this Court including the case of

State of Haryana versus Bhajan lal (supra), in

Vineet Kumar (supra), this Court laid down

following in paragraph 41: ­

“41. Inherent power given to the
High Court under Section 482 CrPC is
with the purpose and object of
advancement of justice. In case
solemn process of Court is sought to
be abused by a person with some
oblique motive, the Court has to
thwart the attempt at the very
threshold. The Court cannot permit a
prosecution to go on if the case
falls in one of the categories as
illustratively enumerated by this
Court in State of Haryana v. Bhajan
Lal
. Judicial process is a solemn
proceeding which cannot be allowed
to be converted into an instrument
of operation or harassment. When
there are materials to indicate that
a criminal proceeding is manifestly
attended with mala fide and
proceeding is maliciously instituted
with an ulterior motive, the High
Court will not hesitate in exercise
of its jurisdiction under Section
482
CrPC to quash the proceeding

22
under Category 7 as enumerated in
State of Haryana v. Bhajan Lal,
which is to the following effect:

(SCC p. 379, para 102)

“102. (7) Where a criminal
proceeding is manifestly
attended with mala fide and/or
where the proceeding is
maliciously instituted with an
ulterior motive for wreaking
vengeance on the accused and
with a view to spite him due to
private and personal grudge.”

Above Category 7 is clearly
attracted in the facts of the present
case. Although, the High Court has
noted the judgment of State of
Haryana v. Bhajan Lal
, but did not
advert to the relevant facts of the
present case, materials on which
final report was submitted by the IO.
We, thus, are fully satisfied that
the present is a fit case where the
High Court ought to have exercised
its jurisdiction under Section 482
CrPC and quashed the criminal
proceedings.”

17. Now, when we examine the facts of the

present case in light of the ratio as laid

down by this Court in above noted cases, it is

clear that the present is a case where parties

23
are related and are neighbours. Civil dispute

regarding property is going on between father

of the accused and the complainant. The

incident which is basis for summoning of

appellant is dated 19.07.2016 which is alleged

to have taken place in front of the house of

the complainant. The materials on record do

indicate that quarrel took place between the

parties on 19.07.2016 and police visited the

spot and initiated proceedings under Section

151, 107 and 116 Cr.P.C.. The state has

brought on the record the copy of the enquiry

report dated 11.12.2016 of the CO, City, in

which enquiry report, following was stated: ­

“…It was found form entire enquiry
that there was dispute between
applicant Shri Sajjad Quraishi and
opposite party Anwarul Haq over
constructing drain regarding which
dispute started between both the
parties on 19.07.2016. On receiving
information of dispute at Police
Station Kotwali, the then SHO SI
Shri hari Prakash Yadav conducted

24
proceeding under Sections 151,
107,116 CrPC on 20.07.2016 on both
the parties to maintain peace
tranquillity. During enquiry,
perused the complaint dated
03.08.2016 filed by the applicant
before the Hon’ble Commission and
found that the applicant filed
complaint dated 29.08.2016 of the
same charges u/s 156(3) CrPC before
the Hon’ble Court of Special
Judge(POCSO Act)/Additional Session
Judge, Court No.1, Jaunpur in which
the Hon’ble Court of Special Judge,
POCSO Act/Additional Session Judge,
Court No.1, Jaunpur, as per its
endorsement order dated 14.10.2016
has stated that in the entire facts
and circumstances of the said case,
sufficient grounds to register the
case are not available. Statements
of other witnesses recorded during
enquiry and nearby people were
interrogated whereupon eye witnesses
stated the fact of the dispute
between applicant Sajjad Qureshi and
opposite party Anwar Ali over the
drain and denying the allegations
levelled by the applicant in his
application, fact of opposite party
Ahmed Ali and Liyakat Ali sons of
Anwar doing dirty/indecent act/deed
or manhandling whatsoever with the
daughters of applicant has not come
to light. During enquiry, applicant
failed to submit oral/documentary
evidence whatsoever. Other
allegations levelled by the
applicant have not been proved from

25
the enquiry. Peace and tranquillity
are prevailing at the spot, yet SHO
of Kotwali is directed to ensure
peace and tranquillity by keeping
vigil on the parties.

Report is submitted for kind
perusal.”

18. We have taken note of the above report

only to take the sequence of the event and not

as a substantive piece of evidence. On the

same allegations, the complainant has filed

the application under Section 156(3) Cr.P.C.

which was rejected by Sessions Judge by an

order dated 14.10.2016, holding that no

sufficient grounds have been made to register

a complaint against the appellant.

19. In the Criminal Revision filed against

the said order of the Session Judge, this

Court did not interfere with the rejection of

an application under Section 156(3) Cr.P.C.,

26
however, observed that the complainant has

remedy to file appropriate application. The

complainant thereafter had filed Complaint

No.1 of 2017. It is true that rejection of an

application under Section 156(3) Cr.P.C. in no

manner preclude a complainant to file a

complaint under Section 200 Cr.P.C.

20. From the sequence of the events as

noticed above, it is clear that dispute

regarding property between complainant and

father of the appellant is pending much before

the alleged incident dated 19.07.2016. The

fact that on the same date of the incident

Police visited the spot and has drawn

proceeding under Section 151, 107, 116 Cr.P.C.

against both the parties and both the parties

were required to maintain peace is a clear

pointer to the nature of quarrel between the

27
parties. It was more than six weeks thereafter

that for the first time an application under

Section 156(3) Cr.P.C. was filed by the

complainant against the accused in the court

of Session Judge.

21. One more fact which transpire from order

of Session Judge summoning the accused need to

be noted. As noted above, the complaint

against the appellant and other accused refers

to two incidents of 19.07.2016. One incident

which took place near the Public hand pump

outside the house of complainant and second,

on the same day in the house of the

complainant where he alleged that the

appellants, their father and other accused

entered into the house and started beating the

complainant and his daughters. Sessions Judge

in his summonig order did not believe the

28
second incident as alleged in the complaint.

Non believing on one part of the incident as

alleged in the complaint by the Court clearly

throws a shadow of doubt on the earlier part

of the incident as alleged.

22. Learned session judge in the impugned

judgment has not taken note of the Civil Suit

pending between the parties.

23. In the facts of present case, we are

fully satisfied that present is a case where

criminal proceedings have been initiated by

complainant with an ulterior motive due to

private and personal grudge. The High Court

although noticed the judgment of this Court in

State of Haryana and others versus Bhajan Lal

and others(supra) in the impugned judgment but

did not examine the facts of the case as to

29
whether present is a case which falls in any

of the category as enumerated in Bhajan Lal’s

case. The present case clearly falls in

category VII of Bhajan Lal’s case and the High

Court failed to exercise jurisdiction under

Section 482 Cr.P.C. in quashing the criminal

proceeding initiated by the complaint.

24. In view of the foregoing discussions, we

are of the view that in permitting Criminal

proceedings against the appellant shall be

permitting a criminal proceeding which has

been maliciously instituted with ulterior

motives, permitting such criminal proceeding

to go on is nothing but the abuse of the

procees of the Court which needs to be

interfered by this Court.

25. In result, the appeal is allowed. The

criminal proceedings initiated by Complaint

30
Case No.1 of 2017, Sajjad Quraishi versus

Anwarul Haq Quraishi are quashed.

……………..J.

[ ASHOK BHUSHAN ]

……………..J.

[ M.R. SHAH ]

NEW DELHI,
JANUARY 30, 2020.

31



Source link