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In its recent judgment dated 26.04.2024 the Supreme Court allowed the appeal by setting aside the impugned judgment passed by the Sessions Court and the High Court and upholding the order of the Magistrate.

The brief facts of the case are that the marriage of appellant and the respondent no.1 took place on 28.04.2018 in the presence of respondent nos. 2 and 3. They met each other through a matrimonial site. Respondent no.1 had uploaded her status as “process of divorce is under consideration.” In the initial meetings, the appellant was shown a smudged copy of divorce order. It was stated by the respondents that the divorce decree is pending for signature of the concerned Judge and will be provided soon. After knowing about the financial condition of the respondents, the appellant booked tickets for the respondents and their relatives from Visakhapatnam to Gwalior and vice-versa, and also provided Rs. 2 lakhs to the respondents as expenditure for marriage. On 16.06.2018, the appellant as well as the respondent no.1 rushed to the clinic of a lady doctor in Shivpuri, where the doctor disclosed that the respondent no.1 was pregnant. The appellant was surprised with the reaction of the respondents as they were not happy. When he asked the reason wife said that she is yet to get divorce from her previous husband. The appellant felt cheated. When no action was taken on the written complaint filed by the appellant to the Superintendent and to the Station in-Charge, Shivpuri, he was forced to file the complaint before the Magistrate.

Consequently, the Magistrate in its order dated 12.03.2019, based on the evidence produced by the appellant, established a prima facie case and issued process against the respondents to face trial under Sections 494, 420, read with Section 120-B of the Indian Penal Code, 1860. 

Aggrieved by the order of the Magistrate, the respondents filed a revision petition before the Sessions Judge. The Sessions Court in its impugned order set aside the summoning order of respondent no.1 under Section 420 of IPC and with reference to respondent nos.1 and 2 under Section 420 read with Section 120-B of IPC passed by the Magistrate, without citing any valid reason, but the court affirmed the summons order of respondent no.1 under section 494 of IPC.

Aggrieved by the impugned order of the Sessions Judge, the appellant challenged the order of Sessions Court before the High Court. The High Court upheld the same order of the Sessions Judge. Therefore, against those two orders, the appellant approached the Supreme Court.

Supreme Court observed that the Sessions Judge failed to acknowledge certain facts and allowed the revision petition partly. It also noted that the High Court dismissed the petition without any valid reason.

The Supreme Court held that the impugned orders of the Sessions Judge and the High Court is legally not sustainable because prima facie can be made out after recording preliminary evidence produced by the appellant and issued order against the respondents to face trial for the offence punishable under Section 420 read with Section 120-B of the Indian Penal Code, 1860, for which they were summoned by the Magistrate. The Supreme Court therefore upheld the decision of the Magistrate.



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