At the stage of framing of the charge and/or considering the discharge application, the mini trial is not permissible.

Section 7 of the PC Act –  Section 227/239 Cr.P.C. – The High Court was required to consider whether a prima facie case has been made out or not and whether the accused is required to be further tried or not. At the stage of framing of the charge and/or considering the discharge application, the mini trial is not permissible.

       We shall now apply the principles enunciated above to the present case in order to find out whether in the facts and circumstances of the case, the High Court was justified in discharging the accused for the offence under Section 7 of the PC Act.

      Having considered the reasoning given by the High Court and the grounds which are weighed with the High Court while discharging the accused, we are of the opinion that the High Court has exceeded in its jurisdiction in exercise of the revisional jurisdiction and has acted beyond the scope of Section 227/239 Cr.P.C. While discharging the accused,the High Court has gone into the merits of the case and has considered whether on the basis of the material on record, the accused is likely to be convicted or not. For the aforesaid, the High Court has considered in detail the transcript of the conversation between the complainant and the accused which exercise at this stage to consider the discharge application and/or framing of the charge is not permissible at all.

          As rightly observed and held by the learned Special Judge at the stage of framing of the charge, it has to be seen whether or not a prima facie case is made out and the defence of the accused is not to be considered. After considering the material on record including the transcript of the conversation between the complainant and the accused,the learned Special Judge having found that there is a prima facie case of the alleged offence under Section 7 of the PC Act, framed the charge against the accused for the said offence.

       The High Court materially erred in negating the exercise of considering the transcript in detail and in considering whether on the basis of the material on record the accused is likely to be convicted for the offence under Section 7 of the PC Act or not. As observed hereinabove, the High Court was required to consider whether a prima facie case has been made out or not and whether the accused is required to be further tried or not. At the stage of framing of the charge and/or considering the discharge application, the mini trial is not permissible. At this stage, it is to be noted that even as per Section 7 of the PC Act, even an attempt constitutes an offence.Therefore, the High Court has erred and/or exceeded in virtually holding a mini trial at the stage of discharge application.

12.We are not further entering into the merits of the case and/or merits of the transcript as the same is required to be considered at the time of trial. Defence on merits is not to be considered at the stage of framing of the charge and/or at the stage of discharge application.

13.In view of the above and for the reasons stated above, the impugned judgment and order passed by the High Court discharging the accused under Section 7 of the PC Act is unsustainable in law and the same deserves to be quashed and set aside and is accordingly here by quashed and set aside and the order passed by the learned Special Judge framing charge against the accused under Section 7 of the PC Act is hereby restored. Now the case is to be tried against the accused by the competent court for the offence under Section 7 of the PC Act, in accordance with law and its own merits.

                                                                         ………………………………………..J.

                                                                  [Dr. Dhananjaya Y. Chandrachud]

                                                                          ………………………………………..J.

                                                                                                          [M.R. Shah]

New Delhi;

April 13, 2021.

Click here to download Judgement

0 Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Exit mobile version