Section 482 CrPC: HC can’t examine mens rea aspect before completion of investigation

Narayan Malhari Thorat vs Vinayak Deorao Bhagat and Anr

Supreme Court

28/11/2018

CRIMINAL APPEAL NO. 1487 OF 2018 (Arising out of Special Leave Petition (Crl.) No.7933 of 2018)

About/from the judgment:

“At this juncture when the investigation was yet to be completed and charge-sheet, if any, was yet to be filed, the High Court ought not to have gone into the aspect whether there was requisite mental element or intention on part of the respondent.”

 

The Supreme Court has observed that before an investigation is complete, a high court, in a petition filed by the accused under Section 482 CrPC, could not go into the aspect whether there was requisite mental element or intention on part of the accused.

 

In this case, the high court had quashed the FIR registered against the accused for abetting suicide. In the suicide note, the deceased had directly blamed the accused.

 

The high court, while allowing the plea, observed that there is no material whatsoever even of a prima facie nature to establish that the accused had either an intention to aid or instigate or abet Sanjay to commit suicide.

 

Assailing this order, it was contended before the apex court that the high court was not justified in entering into questions whether the record prima facie established that the respondent had requisite intention in order to bring the matter within the confines of Section 306 IPC and in quashing the FIR in exercise of jurisdiction under Section 482 CrPC.

 

The bench comprising of Justice Uday Umesh Lalit and Justice Dhananjaya Y. Chandrachud disagreed with these findings of the high court and observed: “There are definite allegations that the first respondent would keep on calling the wife of the victim on her mobile and keep harassing her which allegations are supported by the statements of the mother and the wife of the victim recorded during investigation. The record shows that 3-4 days prior to the suicide there was an altercation between the victim and the first respondent. In the light of these facts, coupled with the fact that the suicide note made definite allegation against first respondent, the High Court was not justified in entering into question whether the first respondent had the requisite intention to aid or instigate or abate the commission of suicide. At this juncture when the investigation was yet to be completed and charge-sheet, if any, was yet to be filed, the High Court ought not to have gone into the aspect whether there was requisite mental element or intention on part of the respondent.”

 

Setting aside the high court order, the bench directed the police to complete the investigation as early as possible.

Read the Judgment

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