Chandigarh, May 25, 2022: While relying on the judgment of the Supreme Court in Ramgopal and another vs. The State of Madhya Pradesh wherein it was held that the limited jurisdiction to compound an offence within the framework of Section 320 Cr.P.C. is not an embargo against invoking inherent powers by the High Court under Section 482 Cr.P.C., the Punjab and Haryana High Court has quashed an FIR registered under Sections 452/323/506/148/149 of the IPC on the basis of compromise.
By way of these two petitions before Justice Pankaj Jain, the petitioners approached the High Court seeking quashing of an FIR registered under Sections 452/323/506/148/149 of the IPC and cross-version under Sections 324/323/506/148/149 of the IPC, recorded at the behest of Harjinder Singh @ Rinku/ the third respondent.
In one of the previous hearings, the complainant, on whose statement cross version case was registered, admitted the factum of compromise. Thus, the Court directed the jurisdictional magistrate to see if the compromise was genuine. As per the report of such magistrate, it was stated,
“In view of the above said statements of parties to litigation, it is apparent that the compromise between the parties has been effected voluntarily, without any threat or coercion and is genuine.”
The state Counsel submitted that though as per the report of Trial Court, the parties compromised the matter but the fact remained that offences punishable under Sections 452, 148, 149 of the IPC are non-compoundable, hence the petitions should not be entertained.
In response thereto, the counsel for the petitioner relied upon the judgment passed by the Supreme Court in ‘Ramgopal and another vs. The State of Madhya Pradesh’ wherein it was held that offences which are ‘non-compoundable’ cannot be compounded by a criminal court in purported exercise of its powers under Section 320 Cr.P.C., and that any such attempt by the court would amount to alteration, addition and modification of Section 320 Cr.P.C, which is the exclusive domain of Legislature.
Nevertheless, the Top Court held that the limited jurisdiction to compound an offence within the framework of Section 320 Cr.P.C. is not an embargo against invoking inherent powers by the High Court vested in it under Section 482 Cr.P.C. Thus, the Top Court held that the High Court, keeping in view the peculiar facts and circumstances of a case and for justifiable reasons can press Section 482 Cr.P.C. in aid to prevent abuse of the process of any Court and/or to secure the ends of justice.
Thus, keeping in view the above-stated and the compromise entered into between the parties, the FIR and the cross-version, along with all consequential proceedings arising therefrom were quashed/set aside. Accordingly, the instant petitions were allowed.