The Supreme Court has observed that the prosecution of a person on the basis of a second FIR is not sustainable if its substratum is same as that of the first FIR.
In this case, the complainant lodged the First FIR stating that he had never executed any general power of attorney in favour of the accused therein and that the accused forged general power of attorney to sell his lands illegally. The accused was ultimately tried and acquitted.
Thereafter, he again filed an application under Section 156(3) Cr.P.C, more or less, repeating the same allegations. This was forwarded to the police leading to registration of second FIR. As his application seeking discharge was dismissed, the accused approached the Apex Court in appeal.
The accused contended that, in the facts of the case, the institution of the FIR on 09.10.2008 long years after execution of general power of attorney dated 02.05.1985 is, therefore, a complete abuse of the process of law and the proceedings are fit to be quashed. Referring to Section 300 Cr.P.C. He submitted that the appellant could not have been tried for the same offence twice at the behest of the respondent who is the complainant himself in both the FIRs.
The bench comprising of Justices Navin Sinha and Krishna Murari, referring to the facts of the case, observed:
It is, therefore, apparent that the subject matter of both the FIRs is the same general power of attorney dated 02.05.1985 and the sales made by the appellant in pursuance of the same. If the substratum of the two FIRs are common, the mere addition of Sections 467, 468 and 471 in the subsequent FIR cannot be considered as different ingredients to justify the latter FIR as being based on different materials, allegations and grounds
Taking note of Section 300 of the Code, the bench allowed the appeal by observing thus:
"In view of the conclusion that the substratum of the two FIRs are the same and that the appellant has already stood acquitted on 07.08.1998 of the charge with regard to forging any general power of attorney of the respondent, we are of the considered opinion that the subsequent prosecution of the appellant in FIR No. 114 of 2008 dated 09.10.2008 is completely unsustainable. "
Case name: PREM CHAND SINGH vs. STATE OF UTTAR PRADESHCase no.: CRIMINAL APPEAL NO. 237 OF 2020Coram: Justices Navin Sinha and Krishna MurariCounsel: Sr. Adv Pradeep Kant for Appellant, Adv Amit Yadav for Respondent
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