S.427 CrPC | Sentence In Default Of Payment Of Fine Cannot Be Allowed To Run Concurrently With Substantive Sentences: Rajasthan High Court

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11 Jun 2024 10:00 AM GMT

  • S.427 CrPC | Sentence In Default Of Payment Of Fine Cannot Be Allowed To Run Concurrently With Substantive Sentences: Rajasthan High Court

    The Rajasthan High Court has clarified that default sentences do not attract the benefit of running concurrently with other substantive sentences that an individual is subjected for any offence.While hearing a petition in relation to Section 427 CrPC, a bench of Justice Anil Kumar Upman stated that concurrent running of substantive sentences along with the sentences awarded for default of...

    The Rajasthan High Court has clarified that default sentences do not attract the benefit of running concurrently with other substantive sentences that an individual is subjected for any offence.

    While hearing a petition in relation to Section 427 CrPC, a bench of Justice Anil Kumar Upman stated that concurrent running of substantive sentences along with the sentences awarded for default of payment of fine/compensation is not permitted.

    “The petitioner will have to serve default sentences, as the provisions of Section 427 Cr.P.C. do not permit a direction for concurrent running of substantive sentences with the sentences awarded in default of payment of fine/compensation. The sentences, which the petitioner has been directed to undergo in default of payment of fine/compensation shall not be effected by this direction and if the petitioner has not paid the fine/compensation as directed by the trial court, the said sentence would run consecutively.”

    Section 427 CrPC provides that if an individual has been sentenced to imprisonment in two or more offences one after the other, then the sentences to all these convictions shall not overlap and run concurrently. Rather, the sentence(s) of later conviction(s) shall begin only at the expiration of sentence period of the earlier conviction. The exception to this rule is to obtain a direction from the court that all such sentences shall run concurrently. Court can exercise its discretion to grant the benefit.

    The petition was filed by an individual who was convicted and sentenced to imprisonment of 6 months each in 3 different cases. The counsel for the petitioner cited multiple Supreme Court cases to argue for the benefit under Section 427, CrPC. In these cases, it was held that that Section 427(2) reveals the intention of the legislature to grant this benefit to even life convicts, then no different yardstick could be applied to those who have been awarded lesser sentences unless there were compelling reasons to do so. The counsel also argued that the petitioner had already spent around 5 months in prison.

    Taking into account all the facts and circumstances, the Court allowed the petition and opined that failure on part of trial court to exercise this discretion was causing great injustice.

    “In the instant case, the learned trial courts did not exercise its discretion with respect to concurrency of sentences and thus, there is absolutely non-consideration of the issue about invoking this discretion which is causing great injustice… it would not be inconsistent in the administration of justice, if the petitioner is allowed the benefit of discretion contained in Section 427 Cr.P.C. with a view to meet the ends of justice.”

    However, the Court clarified that sentences that were awarded to the petitioner in default of payment of fine/compensation would not be affected by this direction. Such default sentences would run consequent to the substantive sentences running concurrently. Accordingly, the petition was allowed.

    Title: Bhoor Singh Kharwal v State of Rajasthan

    Click Here To Read/Download Order

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