2015 ALL MR (Cri) 4374
IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE AT BOMBAY (AURANGABAD BENCH)
S. S. SHINDE AND P. R. BORA, JJ.
Parvez A. Rahim Vs. The State of Maharashtra & Anr.
Criminal Writ Petition No.565 of 2007
24th July, 2014.
Petitioner Counsel: Mr. N.R. SHAIKH, Mr. J.R. SHAIKH
Respondent Counsel: Mr. G.K.NAIK-THIGALE, Mr. N.S. CHOUDHARI
Criminal P.C. (1973), S.482 - Quashing of FIR - Petitioner alleged to have furnished false caste certificate while securing appointment with respondent-All India Radio - Scrutiny Committee revealed that file pertaining to caste certificate not available at concerned office - Also, name of petitioner could not be traced out in register wherein entries of caste certificates issued, recorded - Further investigation necessary - Hence, quashing of FIR, at this stage, not proper. (Para 8)
2. It is the case of the petitioner that without there being any material, the petitioner has been implicated in the Crime No. 160/2007 registered at New Mondha Police Station, Parbhani, for the offences punishable under Sections 420, 468, 471 of the Indian Penal Code.
3. From the facts as are revealed from the pleadings in the petition, petitioner was appointed as Announcer Gr. IV (Marathi) in the year 1996, at All India Radio, Parbhani, on the post reserved for Scheduled Tribe (S.T.). At the time of his said appointment, he submitted the caste certificate, allegedly issued by the Tahasildar, Bhokar, District Nanded, certifying that the petitioner belongs to 'Takankar' - Scheduled Tribe (S.T.). The said certificate was forwarded for verification to the concerned Caste Scrutiny Committee. In the said process, it was revealed that the relevant file pertaining to the caste certificate of the petitioner, could not become available at Tahasil office, Bhokar, District Nanded. It was also reported that on verification of the concerned register, wherein the entries of the caste certificates issued by the Tahasil Office, Bhokar, have been taken, the name of the petitioner is not noticed. On receiving such information, the prosecution was initiated against the petitioner alleging that by furnishing a false caste certificate, petitioner has secured the appointment on the post reserved for the candidate belonging to the Scheduled Tribe.
4. It is the further case of the petitioner that thereafter, a First Information Report (F.I.R.) was registered at New Mondha Police Station, Parbhani, whereupon Crime No. 160/2007 was registered against the petitioner. The petitioner is seeking quashment of the said F.I.R., in the present petition.
5. On 29-09-2007, this Court has granted Ad-interim relief in terms of prayer clause 'C', thereby staying the further proceedings in Crime No. 160/2007, till the decision of the present Writ Petition.
6. Shri Shaikh, the learned counsel for the petitioner, submitted that even if allegations in the F.I.R. are taken to be true as it is, no case can be said to have been made out for prosecuting the petitioner, for the offences punishable under Sections 420, 468, 471 of the Indian Penal Code. The learned counsel further submitted that no blame can be attributed on the part of the petitioner, if the concerned file is not being traced out in the Tahasil office, Bhokar. The learned counsel further submitted that without there being any prima-facie evidence, in respect of the certificate, produced on record by the petitioner that it is bogus or forged one, no criminal prosecution would have been initiated against the petitioner. The learned counsel further submitted that so far as the caste certificate and caste validity are concerned, action, if any, can only be initiated by the Caste Scrutiny Committee and by none else. According to the learned counsel, on this ground alone, the F.I.R. in Crime No. 160/2007 is liable to be quashed.
7. The learned A.P.P. opposed the submissions made on behalf of the petitioner. Taking us through the affidavit in reply and the documents filed on record by respondent No. 2, he submitted that a prima-facie evidence was received to respondent No. 2, which indicates that the certificate furnished by the present petitioner, at the time of securing appointment, claiming that he belongs to S.T., was not issued from the Tahasil Office, Bhokar, District Nanded, and in such circumstances, it had become incumbent to file a report against the petitioner, so that the further investigation can be conducted, and the petitioner can be punished. If at all such evidence is collected and proved in the trial, establishing that the caste certificate produced by the petitioner was, in fact, not issued by the Tahasil Office, Bhokar, District Nanded, but the petitioner has on that basis secured the appointment reserved for the candidate belonging to Scheduled Tribe by playing fraud, he can be adequately punished. Thereafter, the learned A.P.P. invited our attention to the report dated 21-09-2006, received from the Tahasil Office, Bhokar, informing on scrutiny of the register maintained in their office, wherein the entries are being taken of the caste certificates issued that no entry is noticed of issuance of such caste certificate in the name of petitioner.
8. After having considered the submissions made on behalf of the learned counsel for the petitioner, and the learned A.P.P., and on perusal of the documents on record, we find it difficult to accept the contention of the learned counsel for the petitioner that there is no material against the present petitioner to proceed against him, and further that even if the contentions made in the F.I.R. are taken as it is, they do not disclose the commission of any offence by the petitioner. It appear to us that when primafaice information is received that the caste certificate, allegedly furnished by the petitioner at the time of securing the appointment with respondent No. 2, has not been issued from the Tahasil Office, Bhokar, District Nanded, from where it is shown to have been issued. according to us, a case is certainly made out for further investigation in that regard. If the petitioner is confident that he has produced on record a genuine caste certificate, he should not be afraid of any inquiry or investigation in that regard. However, unless the investigation is permitted, truth is not likely to come on record.
9. In view of the facts stated above, it does not appear to us that any case is made out by the petitioner for quashment of F.I.R. in Crime No. 160/2007, registered with New Mondha Police Station, Parbhani. Petition, therefore, fails and is accordingly dismissed. Rule discharged.