The Allahabad High Court ruled that the Court must indicate its satisfaction as to the deliberate avoidance of the proceedings by the concerned persons before issuing proclamation under Sections 82 and 83 of Cr.P.C.

The bench of Justice Rajesh Singh Chauhan observed, “…before issuing proclamation under Sections 82/83 Cr.P.C. by any Subordinate Court, at least, satisfaction must be indicated in an order to the effect that despite the service of notice, summon, bailable warrant and non-bailable warrant the person concerned has deliberately avoided the proceedings.”
The Petitioner approached the High Court under Section 482 of Cr.P.C. to quash the impugned summoning order and N.B.W. Order by the Court after a complaint case was filed under Section 138 Negotiable Instruments Act,1881.

As per the Counsel for the Petitioner, Advocate Shishir Pradhan, not only legal notice but notice of the Court proceedings were not served on the address where the Petitioner is residing. As a consequence, he did not attend the proceedings hence, summons, bailable warrants and N.B.W. issued against him. They further informed that it is only when a proclamation under Section 82 CrPC issued that petitioner got to know about the proceedings.
The single bench further observed that, “any order of proclamation under Sections 82/83 Cr.P.C. must be passed on an application of a person concerned/ Investigating Officer etc. to the effect that after service of notice, summon, bailable warrant and non-bailable warrant upon the person concerned, he/ she is avoiding the proceedings so a proclamation may be issued and on such application, which must be supported with an affidavit, the court concerned may issue proclamation under Sections 82/ 83 Cr.P.C. indicating the subjective satisfaction on the aforesaid aspect in the order itself. If any order issuing proclamation under Sections 82/83 Cr.P.C. lacks the aforesaid procedure, the such order would be nullity in the eyes of law.”

The High Court went on to mention that sometimes the Investigating Agency seeks proclamation orders from the concerned Court to exert the pressure upon the person concerned and it observed that the concerned Court without taking care of specific procedure issued proclamation in a cursory and mechanical manner.
The Court mentioned the Supreme Court judgment in re: Inder Mohan Goswami and another vs. State of Uttaranchal and others reported in (2007) 12 SCC 1 and quoted that, “The warrants either bailable or non-bailable should never be issued without proper scrutiny of facts and complete application of mind, due to the extremely serious consequences and ramifications which ensue on issuance of warrants.”

The Court observed that notice was issued at the wrong address. It further said that compulsory notice period under N.I Act was not taken care of by the complainant as well as by the Court.
The Court ordered that all the coercive action including the proclamation and impugned summoning order be kept in abeyance on the condition of appearance/surrender of the Petitioner.
Accordingly, the Court disposed of the petition.
Cause Title: Pradeep Agnihotri v. The State Of U.P. (Neutral Citation: 2024:AHC-LKO:20764)
Advocate Shishir Pradhan