Chandigarh, April 5, 2022: Observing that although the offence under Section 324 IPC is non-compoundable under Section 320 of the Cr.P.C. yet the prosecution qua the non-compoundable offences can be closed by quashing the FIR and consequent proceedings, the Punjab and Haryana High Court has quashed an FIR registered under Sections 323/324/34 IPC based on a compromise between the parties.
The Bench of Justice Anoop Chitkara held, “The rejection of compromise may also lead to ill will. The pendency of trial affects career and happiness (…)”
The petitioner arraigned as an accused in the said FIR came up before the Court under Section 482 CrPC for quashing of the FIR and all consequential proceedings based on the compromise with the victim.
On March 21, 2022, the victim/ aggrieved person showed his willingness to the Court of JMIC Jalandhar, to not raise objection if the FIR and all the consequential proceedings were quashed. As per the concerned court’s dated March 23, 2022, the parties consented to the quashing of the FIR and consequent proceedings without any threat.
Despite the opposition of the State’s counsel to this compromise, the Court took into consideration some aspects which it thought were relevant to conclude this petition, the first such aspect was the accused and the private respondent(s) had amicably settled the matter between them in terms of the compromise deed and the statements recorded before the concerned Court. The Court also noted that the settlement was not secured through coercion, threats, social boycotts, bribes, or other dubious means and that the victim willingly consented to the nullification of criminal proceedings.
Also, the facts that the occurrence was of such a nature so as to not affect public peace or tranquillity, moral turpitude or harm the social and moral fabric of the society or involve matters concerning public policy and that the rejection of compromise may also lead to ill will, were taken note of by the Court.
Additionally, on the prolonged trial, the Court added that the pendency of trial affects career and happiness. The Court further added that in the present case, there was nothing on the record to prima facie consider the accused as an unscrupulous, incorrigible, or professional offender. Lastly, the Court was of the opinion that the purpose of criminal jurisprudence is reformatory in nature and to work to bring peace to family, community, and society. Thus, the Court reached the conclusion that the exercise of the inherent power for quashing the FIR and all consequential proceedings was justified to secure the ends of justice.
Moving further on the nature of the offence involved in this particular case, the Court expounded that the offence under section 324 IPC is non-compoundable under Section 320 of the Cr.P.C.
“However, without adjudicating this point, in the facts and circumstances peculiar to this case, the prosecution qua the non-compoundable offences can be closed by quashing the FIR and consequent proceedings”, asserted the Court.