The Madhya Pradesh High Court has held that mark-sheet is not a 'valuable security' within the meaning of Section 467 of the IPC.

The Bench of Justice Sujoy Paul allowed the petition and observed that "The Division Bench in the case of Mahendra Kumar Shukla (supra) has followed the ratio decidendi laid down by the Apex Court in Shriniwas Pandit Dharmadhikari vs. State of Maharashtra (1980) 4 SCC 551 and came to hold that mark-sheet is not a 'valuable security' within the meaning of Section 467 of the IPC."

In this case, the revision petition was filed against the order of the Second Additional Sessions Judge wherein charges under Sections 467, 468, 471 and 120-B of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 were framed against the applicant. The brother/co-accused of the applicant had used his mark-sheet/documents as his own to secure employment in South Eastern Coalfields Limited (SECL).

Senior Advocate Manish Datt appeared on behalf of the applicant and submitted that the mark-sheet cannot be considered as a 'valuable security' to charge the applicant for offence u/s 467 of IPC. It was also submitted that no independent charges had been framed under section 120-B of IPC against the applicant and that no forgery was committed by the applicant therefore, there was no substance to have charged the accused u/s 468. And, with regard to charge framed u/s 471, it was submitted that the applicant never used the document to procure any benefit.

Panel Lawyer Amit Bhurrak appeared on behalf of the State.

The Court considered the jurisprudential essence of Section 468 and 471 that "Sections 468 and 471 begins with the expression 'whoever commits or whoever uses'. The intention of law makers is clear that these provisions are aimed against the person who has used the forged document as a genuine document" and observed that no allegations have been made against the applicant and that it was the Co-accused who impostered himself as applicant.

The Court further observed that a marksheet cannot be considered to be a valuable security for the purpose of Section 467 of IPC and thus the charges framed u/s- 467 and 471 were unsustainable.

The Court remitted back the matter to the Trial Court to reconsider as to whether any other charges could be framed against the applicant for his role in the alleged act.

Accordingly, the petition was allowed and the order of framing the charges was quashed.

Cause Title- Ghanshyam Patel v. The State of Madhya Pradesh

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