Breaking; NI Act Ordinance 2015 is Retrospective; Dashrath Rathod's Judgment have no effect in view of the Amendment; SC [Read Judgment]

Breaking; NI Act Ordinance 2015 is Retrospective; Dashrath Rathod

A Two Judge Bench of the Supreme Court comprising of Justices J.S.Khehar and R.Banumati has held that, in view of the Amended Section 142(2) of Negotiable Instruments (Amendment) Second Ordinance 2015, the place where a cheque is delivered for collection i.e., the branch of the bank of the payee or holder in due course, where the drawee maintains an account, would be the determinative of the place of territorial jurisdiction for filing Complaint under the NI Act.

The Bench was hearing an Appeal from an order dated 5.5. 2011 of Madhya Pradesh High Court in which it is held that the Jurisdiction to file a Complaint under NI Act lay only before the Court where-in the original drawee bank was located. The High Court relied on the Three Judge Bench Judgment of the Supreme Court in Dashrath Rupsingh Rathod vs. State of Maharashtra.

Allowing the Appeal Justice Khehar held as follows;

“Insofar as the instant aspect of the matter is concerned, a reference may be made to Section 4 of the Negotiable Instruments (Amendment) Second Ordinance, 2015, whereby Section 142A was inserted into the Negotiable Instruments Act. A perusal of Sub-section (1) thereof leaves no room for any doubt, that insofar as the offence under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act is concerned, on the issue of jurisdiction, the provisions of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, would have to give way to the provisions of the instant enactment on account of the non-obstante clause in sub-section (1) of Section 142A. Likewise, any judgment, decree, order or direction issued by a Court would have no effect insofar as the territorial jurisdiction for initiating proceedings under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act is concerned. In the above view of the matter, we are satisfied, that the judgment rendered by this Court in Dashrath Rupsingh Rathod’s case would also not non-suit the appellant for the relief claimed.”

“A perusal of the amended Section 142(2 leaves no room for any doubt, especially in view of the explanation thereunder, that with reference to an offence under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act, 1881, the place where a cheque is delivered for collection i.e. the branch of the bank of the payee or holder in due course, where the drawee maintains an account, would be determinative of the place of territorial jurisdiction”. The Bench said.

It is also held that “Section 142(2)(a), amended through the Negotiable Instruments (Amendment) Second Ordinance, 2015, vests jurisdiction for initiating proceedings for the offence under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act, inter alia in the territorial jurisdiction of the Court, where the cheque is delivered for collection (through an account of the branch of the bank where the payee or holder in due course maintains an account). We are also satisfied, based on Section 142A(1) to the effect, that the judgment rendered by this Court in Dashrath Rupsingh Rathod’s case, would not stand in the way of the appellant, insofar as the territorial jurisdiction for initiating proceedings emerging from the dishonor of the cheque in the present case arises.”



“The words “...as if that sub-section had been in force at all material times...” used with reference to Section 142(2), in Section 142A(1) gives retrospectivity to the provision”. The Bench said


Read the Judgment here.