(1.) THIS appeal arises under the following circumstances: Karola, Kishana and Onkar filed a suit for the recovery of Rs. 1,368 against Ram Chander and his sons Laduram and Fatehlal on the basis of an agreement dated Jeth Sudi 2, Smt. 2014 (31. 5. 1957), executed by Laduram under which, it was alleged by the plaintiffs that the defendants were liable to pay Rs. 1,300, and interest thereon to the plaintiffs. Laduram, defendant, alone contested the suit and the case proceeded ex parte against the other defendants. The defence taken up by Laduram was that he had paid the entire amount due under the agreement to the plaintiffs after a settlement had been arrived at. The receipt Ex. P-1 dated Baisakh Sudi 15, Smt. 2015, corresponding to 3. 5. 1958 was produced by Laduram in support of his plea. This receipt purported to be signed by the plaintiffs. The scribe of this receipt is Ladulal, son of Magji. During the trial Laduram and Ladulal appeared as witnesses in proof of the receipt. The learned Civil Judge, Bhilwara, decreed the suit and held that the receipt Ex. P-1 was a forgery and Laduram had produced the forged document and had given a false evidence and that Ladulal had forged that receipt and had given false evidence. It was ordered that notices be issued to Laduram and Ladulal to show cause why they should not be prosecuted for the offences committed by them. Notices were issued to Ladulal and Laduram under Section 476, Cr. P. C. Eventually, a complaint was filed by the learned Civil Judge, Bhilwara, against Ladulal and Laduram in the Court of the City Magistrate, Bhilwara, under Sections 467, 468, 193 and 477a, I. P. C. Learned Munsiff-Magistrate, First Class, Bhilwara, framed charges under Sections 467, 471 and 193, I. P. C. , against Laduram and under Sections 467 and 193, J. P. C. , against Ladulal and committed them for trial to the Court of the Sessions Judge, Bhilwara. The said Judge reframed the charges. Laduram was charged under Sections 467/114 and 471, I. P. C. , while Ladulal was charged under Section 467. , I. P. C. The accused pleaded not guilty. The learned Sessions Judge held that the charges were proved against the accused but he accepted the contention raised on behalf of the accused that the accused could not be tried for the aforesaid offences as no proceedings could have been taken under Section 476, Criminal Procedure Code, in view of the provisions of Section 479-A, Cr. P. C. It was held that the complaint filed against the accused persons was void and, therefore, there was no option left to the Court but to drop the proceedings against the accused persons. The State has filed this appeal against Laduram and Ladulal.
(2.) THE main contention urged by learned Deputy Government Advocate in this appeal is that Section 479-A did not apply when the prosecution is for offences under Sections 467 and 471, I. P. C. Learned Counsel for the accused has supported the view taken by the learned Sessions Judge and has further urged that in this ease the learned Civil Judge, Bhilwara, while filing the complaint, had not recorded a finding as required under Section 476, Cr. P. C. , that it was expedient in the interest of justice that an inquiry should be made for offences under Sections 467 and 471, I. P. C. , and without recording such finding the accused could not have been prosecuted and, therefore, the learned Sessions Judge, Bhilwara, had no jurisdiction to try the accused for the said offences. It was also urged that it was not proved on the evidence on the record that the accused had committed offences with which they had been charged.
(3.) WE take up the last argument addressed by the learned Counsel for the accused first. The receipt Ex. P-1 purports to be executed by three persons: Onkar, Shri Kishan and Karola. It is proved by the evidence on the record that Shri Kishan was confined in the judicial lock-up on the data of execution of the receipt. Shri Kishan. had appeared in the witness-box and had denied that he got the receipt executed and put his thumb-impression on it, Karola also gave the same statement. Laduram had been examined by the Committing Magistrate and he had stated that he had paid money to Karola and Onkar and had got the receipt Ex. P-1 executed from them and the receipt was got thumb-marked by Shri Kishan after he had been released from the jail. He could not give the exact date on which Shri Kishan put the thumb-impression. In his statement under Section 342, Cr. P. C. , he admitted that Shri Kishan was in judicial lock-up.;