By LE Desk

Chandigarh, June 25, 2021: The Punjab and Haryana High Court has made it clear that a “proclaimed person” who showed sincere intention and desire to appear before the trial court was required to be protected from arrest.

“The objective of the coercive mechanism prescribed under the Code of Criminal Procedure is to ensure that the accused remains present before the court to receive the orders and punishments as are passed qua (with regard to) the accused. If the accused shows his sincere intention and desire to appear before the court, it would not be unjustified to protect him from being arrested,” Justice Harnaresh Singh Gill asserted, reported The Tribune.

The assertion by Justice Gill came on a petition filed against the State of Haryana and another respondent by a woman. She was seeking the quashing of an order, dated May 6, 2019, passed by Faridabad Judicial Magistrate First Class, vide which she was declared a “proclaimed person” on a complaint in a cheque bounce case under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act.

Her counsel told the Bench that the cheque amount involved in the present complaint was Rs 2, 00,000. She was summoned by the trial court on September 1, 2017, pursuant to which she appeared before the court and was admitted to bail on February 20, 2018. Subsequently, the parties entered into a compromise. But payment in accordance with the compromise could not be made due to loss in business suffered by her husband.

The petitioner’s bail was cancelled on December 15, 2018. Thereafter, she was declared a “proclaimed person” on May 6, 2019. He further submitted the petitioner was ready to pay Rs 50,000 to complainant/ respondent by way of a demand draft to show her bona fide, according to The Tribune.

After hearing the counsel, Justice Gill allowed the petition before setting aside the order dated May 6, 2019, subject to the payment of Rs 50,000 by the petitioner to the respondent/complainant before the trial court.

The petitioner was further directed to appear before the trial court within 10 days. “On her doing so and paying the amount of Rs 50,000 to the complainant/respondent, she shall be released on bail, subject to furnishing bail and surety bonds to the satisfaction of the learned trial court/Duty Magistrate,” Justice Gill asserted.

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