Dishonour of Cheque



Judgments of Supreme Court of Pakistan  #S.489-F PPC

S. 497(5)—Constitution of Pakistan, Art. 185(3)—Penal Code (XLV of 1860), S. 489-F —Dishonestly issuing a cheque—Petition for cancellation of bail, dismissal of—Case had been instituted by the complainant after about three years, two months and fourteen days of the alleged transaction between the parties leading to dishonouring of the relevant cheque—Such delay had never been properly explained by the complainant—Alleged offence under S. 489-F , P.P.C. did not attract the prohibitory clause contained in subsection (1) of S. 497, Cr.P.C.—Accused had been admitted to post-arrest bail by the High Court after he had already spent about three months in jail and his continued custody in jail was not likely to serve any beneficial purpose—Suit for recovery of the relevant amount filed by the complainant against the accused was already pending before a civil court—Investigation of the case had already been finalized and a challan had been submitted—No allegation had been levelled against the accused regarding any misuse or abuse of the concession of bail—Petition seeking cancellation of bail awarded to accused was dismissed accordingly.


Preamble & Sched.—Penal Code (XLV of 1860), S. 489-F —S.R.O. No.977(I)/2003 dated 08-10-2003—Federal Investigation Agency, jurisdiction of—Offences under the Pakistan Penal Code, 1860—Registration of FIR—Dispute between private individuals—Federal Investigation Agency was not competent and did not have the jurisdiction to register an FIR under S. 489-F , P.P.C. for a dispute between two private individuals in respect of a purely business transaction—Schedule to the Federal Investigation Agency Act, 1975 granted jurisdiction to the Federal Investigation Agency to act in respect of several offences, however for exercising jurisdiction in such offences there had to be some nexus between the offences complained of and the Federal Government—Present case did not even remotely involve the Federal Government or for that matter any governmental entity, thus Federal Investigation Agency had no jurisdiction to record the FIR in question—High Court was correct in ordering quashment of such FIR—Appeal was dismissed accordingly.


S. 498—Penal Code (XLV of 1860), S. 489-F —Dishonestly issuing a cheque—Pre-arrest bail, grant of—Grounds—Pre-arrest bail granted by High Court on the ground that offence under S.489-F , P.P.C. did not entail any recovery to be affected from the accused person, and if recovery was not to be affected from accused in a criminal case then he could not be refused pre-arrest bail—Legality—Such generalization/ approach adopted by the Judge-in-Chamber of the High Court could not be approved as it militated against the scheme of Criminal Procedure Code, 1898 because arrest of an accused person during investigation of a criminal case was not meant only for affecting recovery from his possession but such arrest was made for the purpose of investigating the circumstances of the case and collecting evidence and recovery, where required, was only one of the components of the investigation—While investigating an offence physical custody of an accused person may be required by the investigating agency for ascertaining and verifying the circumstances being alleged by the complainant party and even for confirmation of the circumstances of the case put forth and advanced by the accused person in his defence—Supreme Court remanded the case to the High Court for a fresh decision on the pre-arrest bail application filed by accused on the merits of the case, and directed that till a fresh decision on the matter, the accused shall remain on ad interim pre-arrest bail, which may or may not be confirmed by the High Court depending upon the final decision of the matter on merits.


S. 498—Penal Code (XLV of 1860), S. 489-F —Constitution of Pakistan, Art. 185(3)—Dishonestly issuing a cheque—Pre-arrest bail, grant of— Amount given by way of entrustment—Complainant had allegedly handed over some amount to the accused by way of trust—Cheque issued by accused in favour of complainant to return the said amount prima facie was not issued towards repayment of any loan or fulfilment of an obligation so as to attract S. 489-F , P.P.C.—Question as to whether S. 489-F , P.P.C. was attracted in the present case required further inquiry—During investigation no evidence came on record regarding any obligation on the part of the accused to repay any amount to the complainant—Accused had already joined the investigation—Petition for leave to appeal was converted into appeal and allowed, and consequently accused was granted pre-arrest bail.


S. 497—Penal Code (XLV of 1860), S. 489-F —Constitution of Pakistan, Art. 185(3)—Dishonestly issuing a cheque—Bail, grant of—Over-writing on cheque—Complainant alleged that he paid the accused different amounts from time to time for purposes of business, and the accused issued him a “self cheque” for returning the said amounts, however the cheque was dishonoured on presentation—Cheque in question had some overwriting upon the date of the cheque and the amount in figure—Said cheque was not issued in favour of the complainant, and there was no amount mentioned on it in words—No evidence was available with the complainant to show as to how, when and by what process various amounts were paid to the accused for business purposes—Maximum sentence for offence under S. 489-F , P.P.C. was three years imprisonment, thus it did not fall within the prohibitory clause of S. 497, Cr.P.C.—Accused was behind bars for the last about six months— Petition for leave to appeal was converted into appeal and allowed, and accused was admitted to bail.


S. 489-F — Dishonestly issuing a cheque— Ingredients—Foundational elements to constitute an offence under S.489-F , P.P.C. were that cheque should be issued with dishonest intent; that cheque should be issued towards repayment of a loan or fulfilment of an obligation, and that cheque in question should be dishonoured.


S. 498—Penal Code (XLV of 1860), S.489-F —Dishonestly issuing a cheque—Pre-arrest bail, confirmation of—Cheque issued as security and not towards repayment of outstanding loan or fulfilment of an obligation—Effect—Complainant alleged that accused owed him a sum of money and paid the cheque in question, which was dishonoured on presentation—Accused contended that cheque in question had only been issued as security when both parties agreed to settle their dispute through arbitration—Validity—Issuance of cheque in question appeared to be connected with the arbitration accord—Investigation officer stated that cheque was issued by way of security rather than for discharge of liability—Prima facie circumstances indicated that cheque in question was not issued towards repayment of some outstanding loan or fulfilment of an existing obligation instead it had been issued to meet a possible future obligation, therefore, foundational elements of S.489-F , P.P.C. were prima facie missing—Pre-arrest bail of accused was confirmed in circumstances.

Selection of:  Mr.Saleem Yaqoob Advocate High Court