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Tehsildar Who Allegedly Misused Post By Extending Undue Benefits To Husband Not Entitled For Protection Under Judges Protection Act: Madhya Pradesh HC

Zeeshan Thomas
13 March 2022 2:34 PM GMT
Tehsildar Who Allegedly Misused Post By Extending Undue Benefits To Husband Not Entitled For Protection Under Judges Protection Act: Madhya Pradesh HC
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The High Court of Madhya Pradesh recently held that a Tehsildar, alleged to have misused her position by extending undue benefit to her husband as well as her servant was not entitled for protection under the Judges Protection Act, 1985. The division bench of Chief Justice Ravi Malimath and Justice V.K. Shukla was dealing with a criminal revision, wherein the Applicant was...

The High Court of Madhya Pradesh recently held that a Tehsildar, alleged to have misused her position by extending undue benefit to her husband as well as her servant was not entitled for protection under the Judges Protection Act, 1985.

The division bench of Chief Justice Ravi Malimath and Justice V.K. Shukla was dealing with a criminal revision, wherein the Applicant was challenging the order passed by the lower court, whereby she was denied protection under the Judges Protection Act, 1985 ("Act of 1985").

As per the prosecution story, a complaint was filed against the Applicant that she misused her post and office of Tehsildar to auction a property at a price much lower than the guideline value. The property was sold to her servant, whereas her husband was the witness. Accordingly, she was charged U/S 13(1)(d) and 13(2) of Prevention of Corruption Act and U/S 169, 120-B IPC. While framing the charges, the lower court rejected her plea for seeking protection under the Act of 1985.

Assailing the impugned order, the Applicant argued that being a Revenue Officer, she held a status of Judge as defined U/S 2 of the Act of 1985, by virtue of Section 31 of Madhya Pradesh Land Revenue Code. She further contended that being empowered by law to give a definitive judgment in any legal proceeding, she was entitled to additional protection U/S 3(1) of the Act of 1985.

The Applicant asserted that provisions of the Act of 1985 go on to show that for the purpose of seeking protection under the statute, the person concerned has to show that the cause of action for filing prosecution against them relates to something done by them while exercising adjudicatory jurisdiction i.e., to show that they are deciding the lis as Judicial Officer.

Examining the provisions under the Act of 1985, the Court noted that Section 3(1) not only protects Judges, as defined U/S 2, from civil or criminal proceedings for any act, thing or word committed, done or spoken by them when, or in the course of, acting in the discharge of their official duty or function, but also extends the protection to them for any act, thing or word committed, done or spoken by him while purporting to act in the discharge of his official or judicial duty or function. However, the Court observed that any act, which is not done in the discharge of their judicial duty, is not covered U/S 3(1).

Considering the facts of the case, the Court noted that the lower court rightly rejected the plea of the Applicant for grant of protection under the Act of 1985-

In the present case, the allegation against the present applicant is for misusing of her post and office by extending undue benefit to her husband as well as to her servant, we are of the considered opinion that Trial Court rightly held that the present applicant was not entitled for protection under the Judges Protection Act, 1985.

With the aforesaid observations, the Court held that the impugned order did not suffer from any illegality and accordingly, the criminal revision was dismissed.

Case Title: DEEPALI JADHAV v. THE STATE OF MADHYA PRADESH AND ANR.

Citation: 2022 LiveLaw (MP) 76

Click Here To Read/Download Order


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