Honorable Supreme Court has come up with the guidelines for speedy disposal of Cheque Bounce cases as a part of the judgment delivered by a Bench comprising Justices KS Radhakrishnan and Vikramajit Sen on a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by the Indian Banks Association (IBA) represented by 174 banks and financial institutions.
Honorable Supreme Court in January 2014 has sought suggestions from the Centre and state governments to resolve the grave problem of over 40 lakh pending cheque bouncing cases, which slowed down the justice delivery system already over burdened by more than 2.7 crore cases. (TOI)
While earlier, in 2010, the Hon. SC had laid down guidelines for early settlement in cheque dishonour cases under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instrument Act. It had ruled that defaulters going for early settlement before the trial court would have to pay just the principal amount with applicable interest. The said Judgment can be read here.
IBA argued that time has come for the Supreme Court to issue effective guidelines to streamline the procedure for hastening disposal of cases of cheque bouncing instituted under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act, which will not only render speedy justice in cheque dishonour cases but improve functioning of the justice delivery system as a whole. Therefore, various guidelines have been laid down as a part of judgment like…
- No need for complainant to record his statements in court more than once; affidavit can be filed.
- Summons to be issued to the accused on the same day the magistrate receives the complaint.
- Summons to be issued also through e-mails, besides normal post.
- Accused can offer a settlement the day he shows up in court and the magistrate shall dispose of the case.
- All evidence to be recorded within three months and verdict to be delivered shortly.
- Magistrate can receive affidavits from the witnesses too, dispensing their personal presence.
The complete judgment can be referred here @ http://www.chequebounce.com/2014/judgment-indian-bank-association-versus-union-of-india-pil-sc-wpc-no-18-of-2013-21-april-2014/