Sharfuddin Ahmed, J.
1. The short question that requires determination in this Criminal Revision Case is, whether some additional documents could be adduced by a party in proceedings under Section 145, Cr. P. C, after the expiry of the time limit fixed by the Magistrate. The question arises in the following circumstances.
2. The petitioners herein, shown as respondents 4 and 5 in the lower Court, were disputing the possession of an oil mill, the other contending party being respondents 2 and 3. On the basis of a report by the Police, the Sub Divisional Magistrate, Narayanpet, issued a preliminary order under Section 145 Cr.P.C, directing the parties to put in their written statements, and such documents and affidavits on which they relied in respect of their claims. The matter was subsequently transferred to the Munsif Magistrate, Wanaparthy for disposal.
It was at this stage that the petitioners herein realised that the affidavits filed by them were not duly attested as laid down in R. 47 of the Criminal Rules of Practice. They filed an application before the Magistrate for rectifying the defect, and also for filing some additional documents to substantiate their claim of possession. The learned Magistrate, in the view that the time limit had expired, refused to accept the petition. On revision, the learned Sessions Judge, Mahsboobnagar, by his order dated 25th September, 1962, held that the Magistrate was justified in refusing to allow the application. He, however observed that the discretion was with the Magistrate to look into the defective affidavits filed by the petitioners as 'statements' in the case. The revision is filed against this order.
3. The contention of the . learned Counsel for the petitioners is that under Section 145 Cri. P. C, two different stages are contemplated, one for the filing of written statements, and the other for filing of documents and affidavits in support of actual possession. So that, if the party was not able to adduce documents within the prescribed time, the succeeding Magistrate could accept documents which the party wants to file in support of its case. On a plain reading of the section, I am not inclined to accept the contention of the learned Counsel. The practice as far as now is that within the time fixed by the Magistrate the parties not only file their written statements, but also all documents and affidavits on which they want to rely in support of their claim. The wording of the section also contemplates the fixing of a time limit for written statements and for documents and affidavits as well. The learned Magistrate, in my opinion, was justified in refusing to allow the petitioners to file additional documents at the stage when the case was posted by him for disposal.
4. However, In regard to the affidavits which had been filed along with the written statements, I think, the Magistrate was competent to have them rectified, by allowing the petitioners to get them attested by an authorised person. It is more or less an irregularity which can be rectified, without infringing any provision of the relevant section.
5. Further, to my mind, proceedings under Section 145 Cr. P. C. are more or less of a quasi-civil nature. So that on analogy of Civil Suit, in cases under this Section if within the time fixed, by the Magistrate the party is not in a position to file documents in his possession which support his claim, and he is able to satisfy the Court that for sufficient and valid reasons he could not file the said documents within the prescribed time it would be open to the Magistrate in the ends of justice to allow a party to file the said documents.
It is no doubt true that there is no provision In the Criminal Procedure Code analogous to Civil Procedure, for filing of documents at a late stage, but having regard to the nature of the proceedings in the ends of justice such exercise of discretion cannot entirely be ruled out. The object of the imposing the time limit in section is to expedite the proceedings, and dispose of the claims so as to obviate the threat to breach of peace, within a very short period. With this end in view, the various provisions of Section 145 have been laid down. It is, no doubt, true that if the parties are permitted to file additional documents at every stage, the object of this enactment would be defeated. But, as observed above, the procedure is always subservient to the abject sought to be achieved, viz., a fair disposal of the case on a date adduced to the satisfaction of the parties. I am, therefore, inclined to hold that, if the petitioners are able to satisfy the Magistrate that for reasons beyond their control they could not file certain documents which support their claim in regard to actual possession, the Magistrate would not be precluded from accepting the same, in being so satisfied.
6. The revision case is dismissed with these observations.