28 Sep 2023 7:45 AM GMT
The Karnataka High Court has said that before directing initiation of perjury proceedings against a party for making false statements before the court, it must form an opinion on being satisfied that the person charged has intentionally given false evidence/statements and such formation of opinion must be on consideration of materials duly placed before it.A single judge bench of...
The Karnataka High Court has said that before directing initiation of perjury proceedings against a party for making false statements before the court, it must form an opinion on being satisfied that the person charged has intentionally given false evidence/statements and such formation of opinion must be on consideration of materials duly placed before it.
A single judge bench of Justice Shivashankar Amarannavar observed,
“It is not every false statement that is intended to be the subject matter of the prosecution...There must be prima facie case of deliberate false on a matter of substance and the Court must be satisfied and there must be reasonable foundation for the charge and the prosecution of the offender is necessary in the interest of justice. Otherwise, time of the Court, which has to be usefully devoted for dispensation of justice, will be wasted on such enquiries.”
The bench thus dismissed an appeal filed by one Rajesh K N challenging an order passed by the trial court which had rejected his application seeking to initiate perjury proceedings against his landlord for making false statements in the plaint and affidavit, regarding the period of lease in the suit filed by the landlord for ejectment.
Landlords K R Umesh and Rajani filed a suit against Rajesh seeking relief of ejectment. They contended that the said lease agreement dated 15.02.2009 was for a period of eleven months. It was averred that Rajesh has paid rent upto July 2019 and defaulted in payment of rent thereafter.
Rajesh argued that the plaintiffs knew that the lease is for a period of ten years but made a false averment and it amounts perjury. He filed an application under Section 195 r/w Section 340 of Cr.P.C to initiate enquiry as to the alleged perjury committed by the plaintiffs. The trial court rejected the application vide its order dated 08-06-2023.
Umesh and Rajani submitted there was no deliberate intention on their part to make a false statement.
On going through the records the bench noted that as per Clause (2) of the lease agreement, the lease was for a period of ten years commencing from 15.02.2009. However, it held,
“Merely because the respondents in the plaint and in their affidavit filed in lieu of examination-in-chief, have stated a period of eleven months instead of ten years, does not amount to giving false evidence, as they had no intention to take any orders of the Court based on the said statement. As the said period of ten years was over as on the date of issuing of legal notice, terminating the tenancy, any statement regarding the period of lease does not have bearing on the result of the suit.”
The bench held the respondents had no deliberate intention to mislead the court as they had filed a notarized copy of the lease agreement, wherein the lease term is stated as ten years.
“In the case on hand, the said statement made by the respondents that the lease term is for eleven months instead of ten years is not to get any favorable orders and it is only to establish the landlord and tenant relationship,” Court observed.
Accordingly, it dismissed the appeal saying.
Appearance: Advocate Balaram M L for Appellant.
Advocate P N Nanja Reddy for R1 & R2.
Citation: 2023 LiveLaw (Kar) 372
Case Title: Rajesh K N & K R Umesh & ANR
Case No: Criminal Appeal No 1378 of 2023.
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