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Fakir Das Dutt Vs. Gaya Dhar Jana and anr. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCriminal
CourtKolkata High Court
Decided On
Case NumberCriminal Appeal No. 299 of 1955
Judge
Reported inAIR1957Cal225,1957CriLJ444,60CWN404
ActsCode of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) , 1898 - Section 250, 250(2) and 250(3)
AppellantFakir Das Dutt
RespondentGaya Dhar Jana and anr.
Appellant AdvocateSaibal Dutt and ;Bisweswar Bose, Advs.;Tarini Prosad Bagchi, Adv.
Respondent AdvocateRajendra Nath Sarkar, Adv.
DispositionAppeal allowed
Excerpt:
- .....to pay compensation to each of the respondents who were the accused in that case for having brought false and vexatious charges against them. the charges which were brought by the appellant were under sections 323, 504 and 426 of the i. p. c.3. on the very same day, that is to say 9-7-1955 the learned magistrate made an order to the following effect:''complt shows cause by petition. cause shown by him is not satisfactory. he is directed under section 250 cr. p. c. to pay rs. 50/- each to each of the accused as compensation i/d 15 days s. i.'4. presumably the appellant having been called upon to show cause then and there, he complied with the order of the magistrate and the cause shown by him was not considered satisfactory. ' in that view of the matter the appellant was directed.....
Judgment:

Debabrata Mookerjee, J.

1. This is an appeal under Section 250(3) of the Criminal P. C. against an order of a Presidency Magistrate by which the appellant was directed to pay compensation to the two respondents in the sum of Rs. 50/- each, in default, to suffer simple imprisonment for fifteen days each.

2. It appears that there was a case and a counter-case tried by the learned Magistrate both of which ended in acquittal. It is not necessary to refer to the facts' of those cases for the purpose of dealing with the disposing of the present appeal; suffice it to say that the learned Magistrate did not believe the allegations made by the present appellant in the case which he brought against the respondents. On the date the learned Magistrate delivered judgment in the case in which the appellant figured as the complainant he called upon him to show cause Under Section 250 of the Criminal P. C. why he should not be ordered to pay compensation to each of the respondents who were the accused in that case for having brought false and vexatious charges against them. The charges which were brought by the appellant were under Sections 323, 504 and 426 of the I. P. C.

3. On the very same day, that is to say 9-7-1955 the learned Magistrate made an order to the following effect:

''Complt shows cause by petition. Cause shown by him is not satisfactory. He is directed under section 250 Cr. P. C. to pay Rs. 50/- each to each of the accused as compensation i/d 15 days S. I.'

4. Presumably the appellant having been called upon to show cause then and there, he complied with the order of the Magistrate and the cause shown by him was not considered satisfactory. ' In that view of the matter the appellant was directed to pay the compensation as stated above.

5. It is to be observed that the cause shown by the appellant not having been considered satisfactory he was directed to pay the compensation, although the learned Magistrate did not consider whether the accusation which he had brought was false and either frivolous or vexatious. There is no finding reached as respects the appellant's accusations in the case brought by him against the respondents as to whether they could justly be regarded as false and either vexatious or frivolous. Sub-section (2) of Section 250 of the Criminal P. C. provides that the Magistrate shall record and consider any cause which such complainant or informant may show and if he is satisfied that, the accusation was false and either frivolous or yaxatious may, for reasons to be recorded, direct the compensation to be paid to the persons complained against. It is reasonably clear that what the section requires is that the Magistrate has to form his own opinion as regards the merits of the accusation after he has heard the complainant when he shows cause, and then it becomes the duty of the Magistrate dealing with the matter to record a finding that the case which was brought was false and either frivolous or vexatious. It is not, in my judgment, sufficient compliance with the requirements of the law to record an opinion in the main judgment itself that the allegations made were false and vexatious. The section clearly requires that the finding that the case was false and it was either frivolous or vexatious has to be reached after cause has been shown by the complainant. In the present case, there is no finding recorded by the learned Magistrate which might indicate that he had arrived at the conclusion after having paid due attention to the cause that was shown by the appellant. In these circumstances, I must hold that the order complained of is bad and must be set aside.

6. On behalf of the State it has been contended that the present appeal does not lie. The argument is that in view of the provisions contained in Sub-section (2) taken along with those in Sub-section (3) of Section 250 no appeal lay in the present case. It is to be recalled that the appellant was directed to pay a sum of Rs. 50/-to each of the two respondents as compensation; in other words, he was called upon to pay a total sum of Rs. 100/- by way of compensation. It is argued that by reason of the provisions just referred to the present appeal is incompetent.

7. Sub-section (2) provides as follows:

''The Magistrate shall record and consider any cause, which such complainant or informant may show and if he is satisfied that the accusation was false and either frivolous or vexatious may, for reasons to be recorded, direct that compensation to such amount not exceeding one hundred rupees or, if the Magistrate is a Magistrate of the third class, not exceeding fifty rupees, as he may determine, be paid by such complainant or informant to the accused or to each or any of them.'

8. This sub-section, to my mind, is clearly enacted to provide for two things. In the first place,it requires the Magistrate to record his finding as towhether the accusations brought by the complainantwere false and either frivolous or vexatious. Thisfinding has further to be supported by reasons whichare to be recorded in support of the order directingpayment of compensation. The second purposedesigned to be achieved by the insertion of Sub-section (2)is to impose the pecuniary limit of compensation. Thesub-section says that compensation must not in anycase exceed Rs. 100/-, and if the Magistrate is aMagistrate of the Third Class it must not exceed inany event Rs. 50/- to be paid to the accused or toeach or any of them. ,

9. Sub-section (3) provides as follows:

'A complainant or informant who has been ordered under sub-s. (2) by a Magistrate of the second or third class to pay compensation-or has been so ordered by any other Magistrate to pay compensation exceeding fifty rupees may appeal from the order, in so far as the order relates to the payment of the compensation, as if such complainant or informant had been convicted on a trial held by such Magistrate.'

The sub-section which I have just read clearly provides for an appeal to be brought against the order directing payment of compensation in certain specified cases. The sub-section says that when an order has been made by a Magistrate of the second class or third class to pay compensation or when a person has been so ordered by any other Magistrate to pay more than fifty rupees he may appeal from the order in so far as that order relates to payment of compensation.

10. It is argued that a reference to subsection (2) makes it clear that unless and until a compensation which is paid to a particular person exceeds the sum of rupees fifty there can be no appeal whatever. This argument is sought to be reinforced by a reference to the closing words of Sub-section (2) of Section 250. I am afraid, I cannot agree with this contention... Sub-section (2) merely prescribes, as I have said, the pecuniary limit of the Magistrate's power of directing payment of compensation. It has nothing to do with the right of appeal which is conferred by Sub-section (3). That right of appeal is specifically dealt with in Sub-section (3), and I do not think it would be right to mix up the provisions of these two sub-sections for the purpose of sustaining an argument that unless and until a person has been ordered to pay compensation exceeding a sum of rupees fifty he cannot in any event prefer an appeal. The provisions contained in Sub-section (2) and (3) are, in my view, quite independent of each other. In one case the duty of the Magistrate in making an order under Section 250 and the pecuniary limit of punishment are dealt with; in the other case, the forum of appeal is indicated. It does not seem to me a reasonable construction to import into sub-section (2) the provisions of sub-section (3) and by means of such importation defeat a right of appeal which sub-section (3) clearly gives to a person, I, therefore, negative the contention raised on behalf of the State that in the present case the appeal is incompetent.

11. On behalf of the State it has further been argued that although the learned Magistrate did not record his finding that the accusations brought by appellant were false and that they were either frivolous or vexatious in the final order made under Section 250, nevertheless that defect is cured by reason of the fact that similar findings were reached in the main case by which, the order of acquittal was made. It is impossible to accept this contention. Sub-section (2) makes it quite clear that the finding has to be reached only after cause has been shown and that finding must be in terms of sub-section (2). If a learned Magistrate while dealing with the main case comes to the conclusion that the allegations brought were false in the sense that they were not found sustainable on the evidence in the case that cannot possibly, in my view, do duty for the requirement of Sub-section (3) which obliges the Magistrate to hear in the first instance the cause shown on behalf of the complainant and then to record a finding that the allegations were false and they were either frivolous or vexatious. In the present case, there has been no compliance whatever with the provisions of Sub-section (2). The finding reached by the Magistrate in the main judgment that the allegations are false cannot, in my view, be enough since a clear and express finding was required to be reached under, the provisions of Sub-section (2) and that only after cause had been shown by the complainant.

12. In these circumstances, the appeal must beallowed and the order of payment of compensationmust be set aside. The amount of compensation, ifdeposited, will be returned to the appellant.


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