FIR quashed on the basis of suspicion: Bombay High Court
A fair reading of the FIR will demonstrate that, as far as the plaintiff is concerned, the charges are ambiguous, non-specific, and fail to reveal any of the elements of the above offences. The charges in the complaint that resulted in the filing of the FIR do not even reveal the ingredients of the suspected offences against the petitioner. This honourable judgement was passed In the High Court of Judicature at Bombay case of Naval Ashok Agarwal Vs the State of Maharashtra and Anr [CWP NO.146 OF 2021] by The Hon’ble S.S. SHINDE & MANISH PITALE.
On or about 18.03.2020, respondent no.2 and her husband went to Mahabaleshwar to stay in respondent father’s bungalow wherein they had to stay for 4 months in lockdown because of covid-19. The mother of the petitioner informed him that the son of respondent No.2 had informed his father i.e., the petitioner’s brother about an alleged incident of sexual abuse by his grandfather. This led to a quarrel between both of the families, there were also attempts to settle the discord amicably, but eventually, that didn’t work out. The petitioner’s brother sent complaints to various police stations as also the Child Welfare Committee for registration of offences against the father of respondent No.2 under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012 (“POCSO Act”). Unfortunately, registration got delayed and the petitioner’s brother a filed writ petition in this court. On 31.08.2020 respondent No.2 caused an FIR to be registered at the Police Station Worli, Mumbai, against her husband i.e., petitioner’s brother, the petitioner himself and his mother under sections 498A, 344, 406, 504, 506 read with 34 of the IPC.
The petitioner has prayed that this court ought to invoke its extraordinary power under Article 226 of the Constitution of India as also inherent power under Section 482 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (“Cr.P.C.”) to quash the FIR.
The court observed “such generalized allegation made against the petitioner in the aforesaid complaint does not disclose ingredients of an offence under Section 498A of the IPC, which pertains to a woman being subjected to cruelty by her husband or relative. There is no doubt about the fact that the explanation to Section 498A of the IPC elaborately defines cruelty to mean and include any willful conduct which is of such a nature as is likely to cause grievous injury whether mental or physical to a woman. But the aforesaid general allegation levelled against the petitioner in the complaint lodged by respondent No.2 does not disclose the ingredients of the aforesaid offence under Section 498A of the IPC, insofar as the petitioner is concerned”.
The court disposed of the case stating that, In the present case, “We are of the opinion that when the allegations made in the complaint leading to registration of the FIR do not even prima facie show the ingredients of the alleged offences against the petitioner, the petition deserves to be allowed.”