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Syed Ahmad and ors. Vs. Rais Ahmed and ors. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCriminal
CourtAllahabad High Court
Decided On
Judge
Reported in1977CriLJ450
AppellantSyed Ahmad and ors.
RespondentRais Ahmed and ors.
Excerpt:
.....considering the case one of emergency, me also directed attachment of the property. on being satisfied that such an apprehension did exist, he ordered the passing of the preliminary order. it is thus clear that the magistrate first considered the question pf passing of the preliminary order and after being satisfied he made a preliminary order and thereafter he considered the question of attachment of property and then made an order attaching the property. if he was not satisfied with the revisional order or if he felt that the order of the magistrate was illegal or without jurisdiction, it was open to him to challenge the same by approaching this court under section 482 cr. he has failed to do so. he has himself filed the revision before the sessions judge and when that was..........me also directed attachment of the property. aggrieved by this order a revision was filed by the opposite parties before the sessions judge, hamirpur. this revision was dismissed on 30th april, 1976. thereafter none of the parties approached this court, with the result that the order dated 24th march, 1976 became final between the parties. it appears from a perusal of annexure '5' that on 15th may, 1976 the sub-divisional magistrate, mahoba directed the opposite parties to file their written statement and to produce evidence in support of their respective claim by 21st may 1976. aggrieved by this order the instant application under section 482 cr.p.c. was filed in this court.2. it may be mentioned at this stage that the crops which constituted the subject- matter of the dispute were in.....
Judgment:
ORDER

P.N. Bakshi, J.

1. The petitioners filed an application under Section 145 Cr.P.C. with respect to immovable property. The learned Magistrate being satisfied that there was an apprehension of the breach of peace, passed a preliminary order on 24th March, 1976. Considering the case one of emergency, Me also directed attachment of the property. Aggrieved by this order a revision was filed by the opposite parties before the Sessions Judge, Hamirpur. This revision was dismissed on 30th April, 1976. Thereafter none of the parties approached this Court, with the result that the order dated 24th March, 1976 became final between the parties. It appears from a perusal of Annexure '5' that on 15th May, 1976 the Sub-Divisional Magistrate, Mahoba directed the opposite parties to file their written statement and to produce evidence in support of their respective claim by 21st May 1976. Aggrieved by this order the instant application under Section 482 Cr.P.C. was filed in this Court.

2. It may be mentioned at this stage that the crops which constituted the subject- matter of the dispute were in the custody of the Receiver appointed by the civil court. These crops have been sold and the auction money amounting to Rs. 21,000/- is lying in deposit in the court of the Sub-Divisional Magistrate, Mahoba.

3. I have heard learned Counsel for the parties. The petitioner contended that after an Order of attachment is passed under Section 146 Cr.P.C. (New) by the Magistrate on the ground that the case is one of emergency, he has no jurisdiction to decide the dispute with regard to the property involved therein, and that the rights of the parties have to be determined by a competent court. He submits that since the order of attachment was passed on 24th March, 1976 and since that order has now become final between the parties, it is not open to the Sub-Divisional Magistrate to proceed further and to direct the parties to file their written tatementa and to produce their evidence in support of their respective claims.

4. Counsel for the opposite parties, on the other hand, has contended that the order dated 24th March, 1976 passed by the Sub-Divisional Magistrate was without jurisdiction. He submits that a preliminary order under Section 145(1) Cr.P.C. must precede the passing of an order attaching the disputed property under Section 146 Cr.P.C. In short, the submiflsion is that the preliminary order and the order of attachment cannot be a combined order, each must be a separate order, one following the other.

5. The further admitted facts in this case are that Suit No. 16 of 1976 is pending in the court of the District Judge, Hamirpur, between the parties with respect to the subject-matter in dispute, the proceeds of which are lying In deposit with the Sub-Divisional Magistrate. It is also admitted by the parties that a suit under Section 229-B read with Section 176 of the U.P. Zamindari Abolition and Land Reforms Act is also pending between the parties in which the rights of the contestants have to be decided.

6. Section 146(1) Cr.P.C. New runs as follows:

(1) If the Magistrate at any time after making the order under Sub-section (1) of Section 145 considers the case to toe one of emergency, or if he decides that none of the parties was then in such possession as is referred to in Section 145, or if he is unable to satisfy himself as to which of them was then in such possession of the subject of dispute, he may attach the subject of dispute until a competent Court has determined the rights of the parties thereto with regard to the person entitled to the possession thereof - . ... ...(2) When the Magistrate attaches the subject of dispute, he may, if no receiver in relation to such subject of dispute has been appointed by any Civil Court, make such arrangements as he considers proper for looking after the property or if he thinks fit, appoint a receiver thereof, who shall have subject to the control of the Magistrate, all the powers of a receiver appointed under the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908....

On a plain reading of this section, it appears that the order for attaching the property on the ground of emergency can be made after making the order under Sub-section (1) of Section 145 Cr.P.C. i.e. after passing the preliminary order. In the instant case I find from a perusal of the impugned order that in the first portion of the said order the Magistrate has considered the question whether there was an apprehension of breach of peace. On being satisfied that such an apprehension did exist, he ordered the passing of the preliminary order. In the second portion of the same order he again considered the question whether the situation which Was arisen, in the circumstances of the case, was an emergent one, which required the passing of an order of attachment. He was of the view that in order to maintain peace and order between the two 'warring parties', it was necessary that the plots should be attached. It is thus clear that the Magistrate first considered the question pf passing of the preliminary order and after being satisfied he made a preliminary order and thereafter he considered the question of attachment of property and then made an order attaching the property. There is nothing in Section 146(1) Cr.P.C. to indicate that these two orders must be written out separately. As a matter of fact, the Magistrate concerned has exercised his independent mind on both these questions separately in the impugned order. Merely because half the order was not written out first and the second half was written out subsequently on separate pieces of papers, does not imply that the impugned order is legally vitiated. The subsequent order of attachment has been made only after the first preliminary order had been passed to the effect that there was an apprehension of breach of peace. In my opinion, therefore the non-recording of two separate orders, would at the most amount to an irregularity, which would be curable under Section 465 Cr.P.C.

7. There is yet another reason as to why, I am not inclined to set aside the Order of the Magistrate dated 24th March, 1976. As already mentioned, this order was assailed by the opposite party by way of a revision filed before the Sessions Judge, Hamirpur. That revision has been dismissed and the opposite party did not proceed further. If he was not satisfied with the revisional order or if he felt that the order of the Magistrate was illegal or without jurisdiction, it was open to him to challenge the same by approaching this Court under Section 482 Cr.P.C. He has failed to do so. It is submitted on behalf of the opposite parties that since no revision lay before the Sessions Judge from the impugned order dated 24th March, 1976, therefore, the revisional order should not be taken into consideration. It does not lie in the mouth of the opposite party to blow hot and cold in the same breath. He has himself filed the revision before the Sessions Judge and when that was dismissed he appears to have felt satisfied with the dismissal order passed by the Sessions Judge. Now he cannot take advantage and say that since the revision filed was incompetent, it should be ignored and this Court should quash the impugned order of the Sub-Divisional Magistrate, Mahoba dated 24th March, 1976. Even till today no application under Section 482 Cr.P.C. has been filed by the opposite party praying for that relief. In these circumstances, I do not consider it expedient in the interest of justice that I should quash the order dated 24th March, 1976, to which both the parties have yielded.

8. Even if it is assumed that the order dated 24th March, 1976 is illegal a question arises whether it should be interfered with in the exercise of inherent powers of this Court. Needless to point out that inherent; powers are exercised in extraordinary circumstances, An order of attachment passed under Section 146 Cr.P.C. is itself in the nature of ad interim order in the sense that the property remains under attachment till the dispute with regard to the rights of the parties is decided by a competent Court. The Magistrate has observed that peace and order could not be maintained between the two warring parties and that the instant case was one of emergency. It was in order to avert such an unfortunate situation that the Magistrate considered the case as one of emergency which warranted the order of attachment. A prevention of apprehension of breach of peace, in these circumstances, was in the interest of justice and the impugned order ought not to be set aside for it fosters the interest of justice.

9. Further, as I have mentioned above, a civil suit between the parties is pending before the District Judge, Hamirpur, with regard to the proceeds of the crop in question and a revenue suit is also pending before the revenue court in which the title between the parties will be decided. The attachment of the property will continue only so long as the rights of the parties are not finally adjudicated upon by the civil and the revenue courts, since these litigations are pending, I again do not consider it expedient in the interest of justice to set aside the order of the Magistrate dated 24th March, 1976 and to drive the parties to another criminal litigation.

10. Learned Counsel for the opposite party has also submitted in this connection that a fresh opportunity should have been given to him before an order under Section 146 Cr.P.C. could be passed by the Magistrate. Thers can be no dispute that the opposite party had ' clear opportunity to dispute the situation. As a matter of fact, the impugned order itself indicates that both the parties were laying claim and warring against each other. It cannot be said that the opposite parties have been deprived of an adequate and reasonable opportunity of putting forward their case. In these circumstances, it will again not be in the interest of justice that the order of the Magistrate dated 24-3-1976 should be interfered with on this technical ground, which is devoid of any merit.

11. The result of my aforesaid findings is that the order dated 24th March, 1976 attaching the disputed property is a valid and legal order. So long as the rights of the parties had not been decided by a competent court, the order of attachment must continue. The Sub-Divisional Magistrate has acted in excess of his jurisdiction in passing the order dated 15th May calling upon the parties to produce their evidence.

12. For the reasons given above, this application under Section 482 Cr.P.C. is allowed and the impugned order of the Sub-Divisional Magistrate dated 15th May, 1976 Annexure '5' calling upon the parties to file written statements and produce evidence in support of their claim in proceedings under Section 145 Cr.P.C. is quashed.


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