Case Law Details

Case Name : Smt. Veenashri Vs Sri. Shankar (Karnataka High Court)
Appeal Number : Criminal Petition No. 2129 of 2019
Date of Judgement/Order : 19/10/2022
Related Assessment Year :

Smt. Veenashri Vs Sri. Shankar (Karnataka High Court)

HC held that wife cannot be made accused for dishonor of the cheque issued by her husband and husband alone can be prosecuted for the same.

It is seen from the complaint, the allegation is that all the three accused persons including the petitioner herein had borrowed hand loan from the respondent herein and in discharge of the same, accused No.1, who is the husband of the petitioner herein issued four cheques, which have been dishonored and accordingly, proceedings under Section 138 of the N.I. Act have been initiated against the petitioner and two other accused. However, it is seen that accused is not a signatory to the cheque and it is the specifically averred that it is not a joint account also. In the complaint also, it is specifically stated by the complainant that accused No.1, who is the husband of the petitioner has issued the cheque. The three accused in C.C.No.1220/2018 do not constitute a Company or a firm or Association of individuals as contemplated under Section 141 of N.I. Act. Hence, under the circumstances, petitioner cannot be made accused for dishonor of the cheque issued by her husband and he alone can be prosecuted for the same.

FULL TEXT OF THE JUDGMENT/ORDER OF KARNATAKA HIGH COURT

On the ground that the petitioner – accused No.2 along with her husband and mother-in-law owed certain sum of money to the respondent – complainant and in discharge of the legally enforceable debt, a cheque was issued in favour of the respondent and the same was dishonored, a private complaint was filed by the respondent under Section 138 of Negotiable Instruments Act, 1881(hereinafter referred to as ‘N.I.Act’ for short) by way of PCR.No.11891/2017, which is presently registered as C.C.NO.1220/2018 on the file of 22nd Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate, Bengaluru. Aggrieved by the same, the petitioner, who is accused No.2 in C.C.No.1220/2018 has preferred the present petition with a prayer to quash the proceedings in C.C.No.1220/2018 against her.

2. The case of the petitioner is that she never signed the cheque which have been dishonored and the same were only signed by her husband (accused No.1) and she cannot be prosecuted under the provisions of Section 138 of the N.I. Act.

3. In spite of being represented by an advocate, the advocate for the respondent has remained absent.

4. Heard the learned counsel for the petitioner and perused the complaint and the copies of the documents enclosed along with it.

5. It is seen from the complaint, the allegation is that all the three accused persons including the petitioner herein had borrowed hand loan from the respondent herein and in discharge of the same, accused No.1, who is the husband of the petitioner herein issued four cheques, which have been dishonored and accordingly, proceedings under Section 138 of the N.I. Act have been initiated against the petitioner and two other accused. However, it is seen that accused is not a signatory to the cheque and it is the specifically averred that it is not a joint account also. In the complaint also, it is specifically stated by the complainant that accused No.1, who is the husband of the petitioner has issued the cheque. The three accused in C.C.No.1220/2018 do not constitute a Company or a firm or Association of individuals as contemplated under Section 141 of N.I. Act. Hence, under the circumstances, petitioner cannot be made accused for dishonor of the cheque issued by her husband and he alone can be prosecuted for the same.

6. For the aforementioned reasons, I pass the following:

ORDER

The criminal petition is allowed.

Proceedings in C.C.No.1220/2018 dated 08.12.2017 on the file of 22nd Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate, Bengaluru, in so far as it relates to the petitioner herein is concerned is quashed.

Download Judgment/Order

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