Government officials should show conduct which others should emulate, a Delhi court has observed while sentencing a woman public servant to three months jail term in a cheque bounce case.
The court’s observation came on an appeal filed by Delhi resident Usha Pushpan, an employee of the central government health scheme (CGHS), against a magisterial court’s order which had convicted and sentenced her till rising of the court in a cheque bounce case.
Additional Sessions Judge (ASJ) Gurdeep Singh noted that the sentence of imprisonment till rising of the court appeared to be “inadequate”.
“Public servant should exhibit conduct which other should emulate. The sentence of imprisonment till rising of the court is inadequate. There is no mitigating circumstances in favour of the appellant (Pushpan).
“Therefore, in the totality of facts and circumstances, appellant Usha Pushpan is sentenced to undergo rigorous imprisonment for three months,” the judge said.
The sessions court also maintained the magisterial court’s order with respect to the awarded compensation of Rs 75,000 to be paid by her to the complainant.
The magisterial court had convicted her for the offence punishable under the Negotiable Instruments (NI) Act.
A complaint under the NI Act was filed against her by one Ajit Singh who said she had taken a friendly loan of Rs 50,000 from him and issued cheque of the same amount.
Singh had said that when he deposited the cheque in bank, it was returned unpaid on account of insufficient funds, after which he sent a legal notice to Pushpan. Despite that, the amount was not paid.
Pushpan had challenged the magisterial court’s verdict, claiming that the loan amount had already been repaid and the cheque, which was given as a security, was misused by Singh.
Singh had denied the suggestion that loan was repaid.
In its order, the sessions court noted Pushpan has neither denied the signature nor disputed the issuance of cheque and neither has she been able to prove that the loan was repaid.
( Resource – PTI )