Thursday, 4 May 2017

When delay in filing criminal appeal should not be condoned?

A perusal of the application for condonation of delay shows that the
only ground that the Petitioner has taken is that he is an ignorant person
and he was not aware of the legal provisions that an acquittal appeal could
also be preferred before the High Court. In addition to this ground, the
Petitioner has also taken the ground that he did not have financial stability
for filing the appeal. Except for these two bald averments made in the
application, not a single date has been provided in the application for
condonation of delay explaining on which date he obtained the copy of the
impugned judgment and on which date he was able to get the certified
copy of the other documents which were relevant for the filing of the
petition and when did the Petitioner for the first time learnt about the
availability of remedy of the filing of appeal before the High Court. In the
absence of any specific details given by the Petitioner in the application for
condonation of delay except for the bald and vague averments made by
him, without cogent and plausible explanation this Court find it difficult to
condone the delay.
HIGH COURT OF CHHATTISGARH AT BILASPUR
CRIMINAL MISC. PETITION NO. 1211 OF 2016
 Haricharan Dubey,
V
 Ramkumar Gupta,
Hon'ble Shri Justice P. Sam Koshy
Dated: 08/11/2016
Citation: 2017 CRLJ(NOC) 63 Chhat

1. Heard on I.A. No.1 of 2016, which is an application for condonation
of delay in filing the present petition which is barred by limitation of 387
days.
2. The present petition under Section 378(4) of CrPC has been filed by
the Petitioner seeking leave to appeal against the judgment dated
21.7.2015 passed by the Second Additional Sessions Judge, Durg in
Criminal Appeal No. 94 of 2013.
3. By impugned judgment of acquittal dated 21.7.2015, the Second
Additional Sessions Judge, Durg has set-aside the judgment of conviction
dated 29.4.2013 passed by the Judicial Magistrate First Class, Durg in
Complaint Case No. 2176 of 2011 convicting the Respondent No.1 for the
offence under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act and
sentencing him to undergo S.I. for 3 months and to pay compensation of
Rs.1,20,000/- with default stipulation.
4. A perusal of the application for condonation of delay shows that the
only ground that the Petitioner has taken is that he is an ignorant person
and he was not aware of the legal provisions that an acquittal appeal could
also be preferred before the High Court. In addition to this ground, the
Petitioner has also taken the ground that he did not have financial stability
for filing the appeal. Except for these two bald averments made in the
application, not a single date has been provided in the application for
condonation of delay explaining on which date he obtained the copy of the
impugned judgment and on which date he was able to get the certified
copy of the other documents which were relevant for the filing of the
petition and when did the Petitioner for the first time learnt about the
availability of remedy of the filing of appeal before the High Court. In the
absence of any specific details given by the Petitioner in the application for
condonation of delay except for the bald and vague averments made by
him, without cogent and plausible explanation this Court find it difficult to
condone the delay.
5. So far as the ignorance of law is concerned, the same is settled
position that the ignorance of law cannot be a defence for any person. In
the instant case the ignorance all the more cannot be a ground for the
reason that the Petitioner herein has been contesting the case before the
two Courts below in which he has been represented through a lawyer and
it is hard to believe that he must not have consulted his lawyer or the
lawyer must not have advised him to prefer the application under Section
378 (4) of CrPC before the High Court.
6. Accordingly, this Court does not find any merits in the application for
condonation of delay and the same being devoid of merits is rejected.
Consequently, the Criminal Misc. Petition also stands dismissed.
 Sd/-
 (P. Sam Koshy)
 /sharad/ Judge
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