The AllahabadS. 18 (3) JJ Act | Magistrate has No Power to Retain the File After Declaring the Accused as Juvenile: Allahabad HC
HC on Wednesday stated that the magistrate has no power to retain the file after declaring the accused as juvenile.
The bench of Justice Shekhar Kumar Yadav was dealing with the application filed to quash the impugned order passed by ACJM, Khurja, District Bulandshahar in connection with Criminal Case registered under Sections 419, 420, 467, 468, 471 and 120-B IPC.
In this case, the opposite party no.2 lodged the FIR against unknown persons alleging that on false promise of obtaining NOC from Pollution Board, U.P. to run his cold storage, the informant/opposite party no.2 was duped of Rs.40 lakh by unknown person, who asked him to make deposit the said amount into some bank account, where after the OSD of Chief Minister was promised to help him.
The informant/opposite party no.2 issued three cheques. Total Rs. 40 lakh has been deposited by the informant/opposite party no.2. When the informant/opposite party no.2 has inquired about the said account, it was found that the said account is opened in the name of Narendra Singh s/o Anil Singh. Since then the informant/opposite party no.2 has contacted several times but the accused person has not responded.
High Court looked into Sections 18 (3) and 19 of the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015 and observed that as per terms of Section 18 (3) of the Act, 2015, the Magistrate has no power to retain the file after declaring the applicant-accused as juvenile and the trial of any accused/delinquent juvenile, who is assessed to be tried as an adult, can only be held before the Children’s Court/ POCSO Court in terms of Section 18 (3) of the Act, 2015.
The bench stated that the accused-applicant was 16 years 9 months and 7 days at the time of the commission of 5 of 7 alleged offence, hence, the accused-applicant was declared juvenile vide order dated 18.05.2022 passed by Juvenile Justice Board. After declaring the accused applicant a juvenile, the Principal Magistrate has rightly requested the Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate to pass appropriate order for sending the matter to the Juvenile Justice Board/Children’s court, but the Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate without giving any heed, rejected the same observing that as the file of the instant case has been transferred to his court, therefore, he will continue to hold the trial proceeding.