High court imposes costs on bizman, banks for wasting police’s time
Two banks and a businessman will have to pay for wasting the police’s time, reports Urvi Mahajani.mumbai Updated: Mar 20, 2010 01:22 IST
Two banks and a businessman will have to pay for wasting the police’s time.
Taking a stern view against the use of police machinery in settling individual disputes, the Bombay High Court imposed penalty on HDFC bank, Cosmos Bank and the borrower — businessman Tejas Salot — who initially defaulted in repaying loan amount leading to the dispute.
The high court quashed the complaint lodged by the banks against Salot but directed them to pay cost for wasting the police’s valuable time.
Salot will have to pay Rs 50,000 and HDFC Bank and Cosmos Bank will have to pay Rs 25,000 each to the Police Welfare Fund within 15 days.
Salot, proprietor of Ocean Steel Trading Company, had borrowed Rs 1.5 crore from HDFC Bank and Rs 2 crore from Cosmos bank. As Salot failed to repay, the banks lodged a case of cheating, counterfeiting of government stamps and forgery against him.
Later, the banks and Salot settled the dispute outside the court. Salot agreed to pay the entire money of Rs 3.05 crore.
Salot then approached the high court seeking that the complaints against him be quashed.
Senior counsels Ashok Mundargi and Shirish Gupta, arguing for Salot, said the dispute has been settled and no purpose would be served by keeping the criminal proceedings pending. Counsels for the banks Dipankar Das and A.Y. Sakhare argued that since they have got the money, they would leave it to the court whether to quash the complaint.
Additional Government Pleader A.S. Shitole opposed the quashing of the compliant saying that the police had spent a lot of time in investigating the complaints, especially as there were allegations of forgery.
While quashing the compliant, Justice B.R. Gavai said, “If the matter was permitted to go for trial, no fruitful purpose would be served, except burdening the criminal courts which are already overburdened.”
As the police had to investigate the criminal complaints, Justice Gavai imposed cost on Salot and the banks.