The Supreme Court has set aside an order of Uttarakhand High Court passed in a plea for quashing of FIR in a cheating case, saying the judge has not taken pain to look into the merit of the case and has passed a “cyclostyled” order.
The top court said that the impugned order cannot be appreciated and restored the matter back to the High Court while requesting the Chief Justice of the High Court to list the matter before another judge.
A vacation bench of Justices Ajay Rastogi and BV Nagarathna said, “Prima facie, we are of the view that while passing these orders, the learned Judge has not taken pains to look into the merits of the matter and has passed cyclostyled orders”.
The bench in its recent order restrained the Uttarakhand police from taking any coercive action against appellants Harsh R Kilachand and others for eight weeks in connection with the FIR and granted them the liberty to move the High Court for interim protection.
The top court noted that the appeal has been preferred for quashing of the FIR dated February 24, 2022, registered at Nainital, Uttarakhand for the offence punishable under Section 420 of the Indian Penal Code which pertains to cheating.
Senior advocate Meenakshi Arora, appearing for the appellants, pointed out various orders passed by the single judge of the High Court while disposing of the writ petition in a “cyclostyled manner”.
The bench noted that Ms Arora, on instructions that the counsel for the appellants submitted before the High Court, had tried to persuade the Court to appreciate the facts on merits for quashing the FIR concerning which the complaint was made but the order impugned dated April 4, 2022, does not disclose even the bare facts for appreciation and this is the reason for the appellants to approach this Court by filing this appeal.
“In our considered view, the manner in which the order impugned dated April 4, 2022, has been passed by the High Court under Article 226 of the Constitution cannot be appreciated by this Court”, it said.
The bench while allowing the appeal said, “The order impugned dated April 4, 2022, is hereby set aside and the Criminal Writ Petition is restored on the file of the High Court of Uttarakhand and to be heard on its own merits, in accordance with law”.