The Madras High court today ruled that a private bribery complaint against a government official filed before the Chief Judicial Magistrate court is not maintainable without sanction order and adequate material for proof.
Justice S Vimala gave the ruling while quashing a case pending against one Bagavathiappan Pillai, a retired Superintending Engineer of the Electricity Board in Kanyakumari district before the CJM-cum-special judge.
Allowing his petition, the judge said it was not open to the complainant to file any number of complaints without enclosing the sanction order after the HC ordered the de facto complainant to file the complaint with sanction order.
“The complaint without sanction order is not maintainable” the Judge said.
Justice Vimala also criticised the Special Judge for forwarding the complaint without applying his mind to facts of the case. The SJ had passed the order without discussion, without giving any reason and not even referring the matter to the appropriate authority. Hence his order was invalid, she said.
The CJM should not have entertained the three complaints for the same incident. Once the CJM passed an order, the court would become ‘funtuous officio’ (without the order of the superior court). The CJM could not entertain the second complaint, she said.
On the complainant’s contention that the incident of the petitioner taking money from him had been recorded in his pen camera, the Judge pointed out that forensic experts said that video files are not found in the pen camera.
Voice files also are unsustainable for forensic voice analysis and identification, the judge said.
The de facto complainant, Jeba Selvakumar, a commericial inspector, had only tried to procrastinate the proceedings of the court, the judge said.
From materials collected by the investigating agency, it was highly doubful whether the prosecution would be able to substantiate the ingredients of the offences, the judge said.
Pillai contended he exercised his administrative power to transfer Selvakumar and that the malafide prosecution had been initiated and probe was not done by a competent officer.
The judge said repeated filing of complaints and cumulative circumstances available would only show that all is not well with the private complaint and quashed it.
( Source – PTI )