1. This Criminal Petition one under Section 482 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (the Code) is directed against the order dated 10-10-1984 in C.C. No. 800/84 (C.R. No. 37/84) passed by the Munsiff & JMFC, Chintamani, directing issue of process to the petitioners who were accused Nos. 1 and 2 for offences under Sections 43(5) and (6) of the Karnataka Rent Control Act, 1961 (for short 'the Act') and also for an offence under Section 193 I.P.C. against the 2nd petitioner.
2. The matter arises in this way :
The respondent (who will be referred to as the complainant) presented a private complaint against the petitioners (who will be referred to as the accused). The Magistrate, following the procedure laid down in Chapter XV of the Code, directed issue of process against the accused as stated above. It is the correctness of this order that is sought to be challenged in this Criminal Petition, by the accused.
3. This petition may be disposed of on a short point. The Trial Magistrate directed to issue process against the accused for two sets of offences viz., offences under Section 43(5) and (6) of the Act against both the accused and under Section 193 I.P.C. against the second accused only as, in his opinion, there was sufficient ground for proceeding. The Trial Magistrate took action in issuing the process against the accused upon a complaint filed by the complainant. It is provided under Section 51 (a) of the Act that the Controller or any other officer authorised by the State Government in this behalf may prosecute any person for contravention of any of the provisions of the Act or any rule madethere under. The scope and ambit of Section 51 (a) came up for consideration before this Court in Syed Jaffar -v.- Syed Ahmed, 1980(2) KLJ. 358. It was held in this decision that the Magistrate has no jurisdiction to entertain a complaint by a private person for offences under the Act in view of Section 51(a) which empowers only the authority mentioned in the Section to institute proceedings for contravention of the provisions of the Act.
4. However, Sri. G.B. Shastry, the Learned Advocate appearing for the complainant, submitted that there was no Controller exercising his jurisdiction under the provisions of the Act respecting Chintamani town and as such thecomplainant has no other go but to approach the jurisdictional Magistrate with a private complaint. I do not think that this ground will help the complainant in any way to maintain that the Magistrate was competent to entertain the complaint lodged by him. It is clear from the language employed in Section 51 (a) of the Act that the authorities specified there-under to prosecute any person for contravention of any of the provisions of the Act or any rule madethere under, are either the Controller or any other officer authorised by the State Government in that behalf. The Section itself con-templates that in the absence of the Controller, the State Government may authorise any other officer to discharge the functions under Section 51 (a) If, as contended by Sri Shastry, there was no Controller exercising jurisdiction under the provisions of the Act respecting Chintamani town, it was open to the complainant, if he so desired, to approach the Government and get any other officer authorised, to prosecute the accused. He had not done so. That being the position, it is not open to the complainant now to contend before this Court that since there was npController for Chintamani town exercising jurisdiction under the Act, the complaint lodged by the complainant was in order and as such the Magistrate was competent to entertain that complaint. I find no force in this submission.
5. Now turning to the offence under Section 193 IPC in respect of which also process was directed to be issued against the second accused, the allegation made against the second accused in the complaint was that he had deliberately made a false statement on oath in the proceedings in H.R.C. 8/80 in the Court of the Munsiff at Chintamani. Section 195 of the Code stipulates, among other things, that no Court shall take cognizance of any offence punishable under Section 193 I.P.C. when such offence is alleged to have been committed in, or in relation to, any proceeding in any Court, except on the complaint in writing by that Court, or of some other Court to which that Court is subordinate. Since the offence under Section 193 I.P.C. was alleged to have been committed in relation to the proceedings in H.R.C. 8/80 in the Court of the Munsiff at Chintamani, a complaint in respect of the said offence should be made in writing by the concerned Court or some other Court to which that Court is subordinate. Since the Magistrate was incompetent to take cognizance of the offence under Section 193 I.P.C. upon the private complaint lodged by the complainant, the Court-below has no jurisdiction to entertain the complaint of the complainant in respect of that offence also. Thus, it is seen that the Court below has no jurisdiction to entertain the complaint filed by the complainant for any of the offences. In that view, the process issued to the accused based upon the complaint filed by the complainant was also without jurisdiction and liable to be set aside.
6. In the result, for the reasons stated above, the process issued to the accused and also the entire proceedings now. pending before the Court-below in C.C. No. 800/84 (C.R.No 37/84) are quashed.