1. This is an application made on behalf of one Kedar Nath Dey against an order of the Chief Presidency Magistrate, dated the 14th March 1923, directing that a certain motor car should remain in Court until further orders. That order was made in criminal proceedings instituted by Mohamed Siddik against a person of the name of Rigby in which the latter is charged with criminal breach of trust in respect of the motor car. Those criminal proceedings themselves as between the parties are not before us and we are only concerned with the order made against Kedar Nath Dey for the return of the ear. But from Siddik's petition of complaint it appears there were arrangements embodied in an agreement between him and Rigby with reference to this motor car. The petition of complaint further states that he learnt on enquiry that Rigby had sold the car to Kedar Nath Dey contrary to the terms of the agreement. The position, therefore, is that there was a dispute about this car resulting in criminal proceedings between Mohamed Siddik and Rigby. Kedar Nath alleges that these proceedings are collusive for the purpose of securing the car from him for the benefit of the parties. That is hardly a matter we can go into, but I may say, without prejudging the criminal proceedings now pending between Mohamed Siddik and Rigby that from the petition of complaint it is obvious that, even as regards those proceedings, it may be a matter for consideration as to whether or not the questions involved are matters for a Criminal or a Civil Court. But as regards Kedar Nath Dey I have not the slightest hesitation in saying that there has been a gross abuse of the process of a Criminal Court by utilising criminal proceedings to which Kedar Nath Dey is not a party for the detention of property which he professed to have and had admittedly bought and of which he was in possession, whether or not the seller had a right to sell it to him. I can only suppose the object is to endeavour to obtain the judgment of the Criminal Court upon a question which clearly ought to be determined in a civil suit. The car may be detained for a period of several months in which time it will probably seriously deteriorate. Though the ear should not be detained until the conclusion of the criminal case I think some order should be made safe guarding the rights of Siddik, if he has any, until the question of the ownership of the car or any other such questions of a civil nature to which the facts may be given rise have been decided by a Court competent to deal with them if proceedings are instituted within a reasonable time for that purpose.
2. The order, therefore, is that on Kedar Nath Dey giving an undertaking in writing to this Court to produce the car whenever called upon to do so either by this Court or by the Court of the Chief Presidency Magistrate until the proceedings before him have terminated and upon Kedar Nath Dey giving security in the sum of Rupees ten thousand by his own bond and by one surety to the satisfaction of the Chief Presidency Magistrate, the car in question will be returned to him.
3. On the undertaking to this Court being given it will be certified by an officer of this Court to the Chief Presidency Magistrate so that he may act upon such certificate when he has taken the security ordered. When the above directions have been carried out the order of the Chief Presidency Magistrate, the 14th March, 1923, directing the car to remain in Court will be set aside and on the criminal proceedings now pending' between Siddik and Rigby before the Chief Presidency Magistrate being concluded, Kedar Nath Dey will be discharged from his bond and undertaking and his surety also will be discharged. This order is without prejudice to any order that may be made in, relation to this car by any Civil Court of competent jurisdiction, at any date hereafter.
4. I agree.