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Home / Chandigarh / FICO opposes finance ministry’s proposal to decriminalise cheque bounce offences

FICO opposes finance ministry’s proposal to decriminalise cheque bounce offences

The members rued that significant portion of business, whether retail or bulk, is being carried out through cheques and if the offence is decriminalised, there would be no fear in minds of offenders.

chandigarh Updated: Jun 19, 2020 23:16 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
Hindustantimes

The Federation of Industrial and Commercial Organisation (FICO) has opposed the finance ministry’s proposal to decriminalise cheque bounce offences.

The members rued that significant portion of business, whether retail or bulk, is being carried out through cheques and if the offence is decriminalised, there would be no fear in minds of offenders.

FICO president Gurmeet Singh Kular said,“There seems to be no rationale in the proposed amendments and this will lead to chaos in settlement of financial deals, both personal and business. The decriminaliation of economic offences, especially cases of cheque bounce, will adversely affect working of business entities dealing on credit or postdated cheque basis. This move will certainly prove counterproductive as a potent and expeditious mechanism for recovery of loans through penal consequences.”

General secretary Rajeev Jain said, “The provision was incorporated in the Negotiable Instrument Act, with the objective to defeat the criminal objectives of the persons, who intend to swallow the hard-earned money of the investors and entrepreneurs. Promoting efficiency in banking operations and ensuring credibility in transacting business through cheques was the intention reason behind making cheque bounce a non-bailable offence. Judicial interpretations followed from time to time and it was repeatedly held in various judicial pronouncements that Section 138 was meant to protect bona fide creditors against unscrupulous drawers who never intended to honour the cheques issued by them.”

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