The Madhya Pradesh High Court imposed a cost of Rs. 1 lakh on a divorced woman for misuse of the process of the court saying that unscrupulous litigants cannot take courts for a ride.

The Indore Bench of the Court was dealing with a petition filed under Section 482 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) for quashing the FIR registered under Sections 498A, 323, 506, 34, 325, and 323 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and the subsequent proceedings pending before the Additional Sessions Judge.

A Single Bench of Justice Subodh Abhyankar held, “… it is found that omnibus allegations have been made by the complainant and further considering the fact a decree of divorce by mutual consent has already been passed between the parties, the respondent no.2 was bound to withdraw the same but she deliberately, with ulterior motives refused to withdraw even that part of the charge-sheet. Thus, the conduct of the respondent no.2 in continuing with the criminal case against the petitioners despite entering into a compromise with the petitioner no.1, and accepting Rs.50 Lakhs in lieu thereof, clearly amounts to misuse of the process of the court.”

Advocate Trilok Chand Jain appeared for the petitioners while GA Nisha Jaiswal appeared for the respondents.

Factual Background -

The parties got married in 2000 and a daughter was born out of the said wedlock. After some years of the marriage, a matrimonial dispute arose between them and the dispute was settled after the application under Section 13B of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 (HMA) was decreed. A decree of divorce by mutual consent was obtained after the settlement was arrived at between the parties in which it was clearly stipulated in the application that the wife would get a sum of Rs. 50 lakhs and that she would also ensure that each and every case which was lodged by her in any court shall be withdrawn.

After the decree was passed, since the case was also pending as no application for compounding or quashment of the same was filed by the wife, the petition was filed before the High Court. The grievance was that, even after the divorce decree was passed and a sum of Rs. 50 lakhs was received, the wife refused to withdraw the case which was lodged under the IPC provisions.

The High Court in view of the facts and circumstances of the case said, “… this Court is of the considered opinion that even if the documents filed along with the charge sheet are accepted to be true, the charge under Section 313 of IPC is not at all made out and appears to have been added with the mala fide intentions of harassing the petitioners.”

The Court, therefore, imposed a cost of Rs. 1 lakh and cautioned the unscrupulous litigants that they cannot take the courts for a ride which are meant for serious litigation.

“… the valuable time of the Courts cannot be allowed to be wasted by them in any manner. Thus, the cost shall be paid by the respondent No.2, who has already received Rs.50 lakhs from the petitioners, to the petitioner No.1 within a period of four weeks by crediting the same in the bank account of the petitioner No.1, the details of which can be obtained from the Registry of this Court and the petitioner No.1 is directed to furnish his bank account details before the Registry of this Court so that this order can be complied with”, it directed.

Accordingly, the High Court disposed of the petition.

Cause Title- X & Ors. v. State of Madhya Pradesh Station House Officer & Anr.


Petitioners: Advocate Trilok Chand Jain

Respondents: GA Nisha Jaiswal and Advocate Rishiraj Trivedi.

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