1. A case was pending against the petitioners in which they were charged with an offence punishable under Section 427, Indian Penal Code, the opposite party being the complainant in that case. The offence is one which is compoundable under Section 345, Cr. P.C., without the leave of the Court. On the 21st June 1924 both parties filed a petition of compromise agreeing to be bound by the decision of five gentlemen named therein and asking the Court to grant an adjournment for settlement of their dispute. On the 9th July another joint petition was filed reducing the number of arbitrators to three. The three arbitrators visited the locality, but while they were making their enquiry some unpleasantness occurred and one of the arbitrators ceased to take any further part in the deliberation. The two remaining arbitrators made an award which was not accepted by the opposite party. An application being made by the petitioners to the Trying Magistrate to record an order of acquittal under Section 345, he held that the case had not been compounded and that the trial should proceed.
2. The only question that arises in this Rule is whether these petitions filed on the 21st June and the 9th July 1924 had the effect of compounding the case within the meaning of Section 345 of the Code. We think the Magistrate is right in holding that it cannot be said that the agreement to refer the case to arbitration was a final settlement of the dispute which the Court was bound to accept. The fact that when agreeing to be bound by the decision of the arbitrators the parties asked for adjournment of the case shows that it was not their intention to treat the reference to arbitration as taking the case out of the jurisdiction of the Criminal Court. The decision of the arbitrators whatever it was could not have been enforced by the Criminal Court, and it is unlikely, therefore, that the parties would have considered that the reference to arbitration was the final ending of the dispute. What was probably contemplated was that the arbitrators should go into the matter and in accordance with their decision the parties would act and after effect had been given to their decision by mutual agreement the case should then be compromised, but that it should be kept pending until it was finally settled.
3. We accordingly discharge this Rule.