10 June 2024


Supreme Court

Noor Mohammed Vs. Khurram Pasha




If a statute prescribes a method for exercise of power, by necessary implication, the other methods of performance are not acceptable

Present appeal challenges the correctness of the judgment and order passed by the High Court. The instant proceedings arise out of Complaint Case instituted by the Respondent herein in respect of offence punishable under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act, 1881. High Court observed that, the conduct of the Appellant in not depositing the interim compensation as directed, showed that he was only interested in protracting the proceedings for one reason or the other

The remedy for failure to pay interim compensation as directed by the court is provided for by the Legislature. The method and modality of recovery of interim compensation is clearly delineated by the Legislature. It is well known principle that if a statute prescribes a method or modality for exercise of power, by necessary implication, the other methods of performance are not acceptable.

The concerned provision nowhere contemplates that an Accused who had failed to deposit interim compensation could be fastened with any other disability including denial of right to cross-examine the witnesses examined on behalf of the complainant. Any such order foreclosing the right would not be within the powers conferred upon the Court and would, as a matter of fact, go well beyond the permissible exercise of power.

Since the right to cross-examine the Respondent was denied to the Appellant, the decisions rendered by the Courts below suffer from an inherent infirmity and illegality. Therefore, decisions of all three courts are set aside with further direction that Complaint Case shall stand restored to the file of the Trial Court. The Trial Court is directed to permit the Appellant to cross-examine the Respondent and then take the proceedings to a logical conclusion. Appeal allowed.

Tags : Cross-examination Denial Legality

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