GOWRI SHANKAR GUPTA AND ORS. Vs. CANARA BANK AND ORS.
DEBTS RECOVERY APPELLATE TRIBUNAL
Gowri Shankar Gupta And Ors.
Canara Bank and Ors.
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Ranjit Singh, J. (Chairperson) -
(1.) APPELLANT herein had filed two applications (I.A. Nos. 151/2013 and 152/2013) before the Tribunal blow. The prayer in I.A. No. 151/2013 was for sending certain documents to Central Forensic Science Laboratory for comparison of signatures of Prem Lata Gupta impleaded as defendant No. 2 in the O.A. The prayer made in the I.A. No. 152/2013 was for grant of permission to cross -examine the Bank's witness (AW -2). Both these applications have been dismissed by the Tribunal below. Aggrieved against this, the appellants have filed the present appeal. The prayer in I.A. No. 151/2013 for sending the documents to Forensic Science Laboratory was made on the ground that the Bank had produced specimen signature card of late Prem Lata Gupta where she had signed as 'Prem Lata' with single 't' while writing 'Lata', but on the document PW 2/19 the signatures of the guarantor were made with double 't' ('tt') while writing the word 'Lata'. Plea is that on the guarantee document double 'tt' has been written in the signatures whereas on the specimen signature card the word 'Lata' is written with single 't'. On this count it was pleaded that the signatures where double 't' ('tt') was used were forged and to ascertain this forgery documents were required to be sent for the purpose of comparison.
(2.) THE plea for cross -examining the Bank's witness was made on the ground that the Bank had stated in the notice issued under Section 13(2) of the SARFAESI Act that Prem Lata had executed renewal deed on 20.1.2003, whereas, Prem Lata had died on 9.9.2002. On this basis, it was pleaded that Prem Lata possibly could not have signed the renewal deed and for proving this, cross -examination of Bank's witness was needed. While declining the prayer for sending the documents to Forensic Science Laboratory, the Tribunal has noticed that signatures of Prem Lata Gupta on specimen signature card is made with single 't' whereas on the guarantee document the word 'Lata' is written with doubt 't' ('tt'). The Tribunal has noticed that the Bank has produced several other documents where Prem Lata had signed with single 't' and photograph of Prem Lata is affixed on the card and on a letter evidencing deposit of titled deed late Prem Lata had signed using single 't' while writing the word 'Lata'. Even the extract of Mortgage Register produced by the Bank had been signed using single 't' Guarantee covering letter was also signed using single 't' so was the guarantee agreement dated 10.11.2000. From this, the Tribunal has concluded that the Bank had no intention to commit fraud by forging the signatures of Prem Lata Gupta and it could not have done by using double 't' ('tt') and could easily have forged the document using single 't' while signing. The Tribunal, therefore, did not find any valid reason for sending the documents for examination by the forensic science expert as prima facie no case of forgery could be made out.
(3.) IN view of large number of other documents containing the signatures of late Prem Lata Gupta, the view which the Tribunal has formed is fully justified and is also found reasonable. It defies any logic to allege that the Bank would need to forge any signature of Prem Lata. A number of documents had been signed by Prem Lata and it is not the case of the appellants that in all these documents a forgery has been committed by the Bank. What for and why the Bank would be interested in committing forgery is not explained in any manner. Merely on the allegation that the signatures of Prem Lata Gupta were forged that too, on the ground that double 't' was used while writing the word 'Lata' is not sufficient reason. Accordingly I do not find any reason to interfere with the view formed by the Tribunal below. I do not find any merit in the plea raised by the Counsel for the appellants on this count.;
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