SECTION 420 IPC - Indian Penal Code - Cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property



IPC Section-420


Description of IPC Section 420

According to section 420 of Indian penal code, Whoever cheats and thereby dishonestly induces the person deceived to deliver any property to any person, or to make, alter or destroy the whole or any part of a valuable security, or anything which is signed or sealed, and which is capable of being converted into a valuable security, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to seven years, and shall also be liable to fine.

 

Offence : Cheating and there by dishonestly inducing delivery of property, or the making, alteration or destruction of a valuable security


Punishment : 7 Years + Fine


Cognizance : Cognizable


Bail : Non-Bailable


Triable : Magistrate First Class







Section 420 IPC- Cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property

Have you been Cheated? Or has someone gained advantage over you through a dishonest act? If you have fallen prey to any of these acts, you have been a victim of the offence of ‘Cheating’. It is a term we often use in our day to day life but do not know its legal aspects.

Cheating is a criminal offence and is associated with numerous other crimes such as cheating and dishonour of cheque, cheating by way of breach of contract, forgery of any valuable document for the purpose of cheating etc. It is a dishonest act to gain benefit from the other person or to cause loss to a person. When a person cheats and thereby dishonestly induces any person to deliver property to any other person, such person inducing the other is legally responsible under section 420 of the Indian Penal Code.

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What Constitutes Cheating under IPC?

Cheating has been defined in Section 415 of the IPC as “Whoever, by deceiving any person, fraudulently or dishonestly induces the person so deceived to deliver any property to any person, or to consent that any person shall retain any property, or intentionally induces the person so deceived to do or omit to do anything which he would not do or omit if he were not so deceived, and which act or omission causes or is likely to cause damage or harm to that person in body, mind, reputation or property, is said to “cheat”.”

But, for an offence to fall under Section 420 of IPC, it must be proved that the complainant parted with his property acting on a representation which was false to the knowledge of the accused and that the accused had a dishonest intention from the outset.



Punishment under Section 420 of IPC

When an offence of cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property under section 420 of Indian Penal Code has been committed, the person committing such offence will be held liable for punishment with imprisonment of 7 years and fine as well. Such imprisonment and fine will depend upon the seriousness of the crime.



What to do if you are Cheated?

If someone has committed fraud and has deceived you causing loss of property or money, you can take the following steps:

  1. The first step to take is to immediately file a complaint u/s 420 of the Indian Penal Code in the nearest police station or in the police station having jurisdiction over the area where the act was committed.

  2. Police will register the complaint and will make a daily diary entry (DD Entry). The police will provide you with a copy of the complaint registered.

  3. If police denies to register FIR, you may meet the SHO of that particular police station and ask him to register your complaint. In case, if still nobody takes action, you can speed post a copy of your complaint to Assistant Commissioner of Police or Deputy Commissioner of Police. You must keep receipt of the complaint so sent to the ACP/DCP with you and maintain the same until the case has been concluded.

  4. File an application in court u/s 156(3) of the Criminal Procedure Code for registering FIR. It is mandatory to show receipts of ACP/DCP for filling the said application in Court. If police denies to register FIR, the court has the power to register an FIR.

    Consult: Top Criminal Lawyers in India



What to retain for Evidence in a case of Cheating?

The following things can be kept as evidence in case you are involved in case under Section 420 of the Indian Penal Code:

  1. Any document supporting your case (agreement, cheque, invoice or any other written document etc.)

  2. WhatsApp chats, text messages, phone recordings.

  3. Video recording, CCTV, photographs, any witness.

  4. Any evidence on social media that helps in supporting/ proving your facts.



How is Cheating as an Offence Proved?

You have to prove that there was an intention to cheat at the time of making the misrepresentation, and this fact is to be proved on the basis of all the subsequent conduct as acts and omissions of the accused. Therefore, all the acts and omissions of the accused must be clearly and legitimately set out right from the date of making of false representation, till the filing of the complaint.

It must be shown that there is a failure of the promise which was made. It must be shown that there was no effort on the part of accused to perform his promise. The test of prudent man must be applied to appreciate the evidence on record.



Essential Elements to Constitute Cheating under IPC

When any person commits the offence of cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property the conditions that are required to be fulfilled to hold him/her guilty are as follows-

Dishonest Inducement- When one person uses deceitful practices to convince the other person to agree on anything which is harmful to that person, it is known as Inducement. It generally occurs when two parties enter into a contract and a party uses fraudulent inducement to gain advantage on the other party. The fraudulent inducement can be done when a person persuades another by giving false information about a thing to be beneficial for that person but in reality, it is not. Fraudulent inducement differs from fraud as inducement needs a person to convince the other person for the object which he wants to achieve and the latter needs the person to commit a deceitful conduct by himself for the object which he wants to achieve.

The offence of cheating does not necessarily need the person who is being deceived is induced to do any act which could cause harm to him. In case there is an absence of dishonest inducement, it is enough to constitute the offence of cheating that the person deceived is induced to an act which is likely to cause harm to him.

Deliver Property or Valuable Security- The dishonest act must be done to wrongfully gain possession of a property or to cause loss of the same to the victim. The property here does not only include money or assets but also anything that can be measured in terms of money.

Guilty Intention- Mens rea or a guilty intention is an essential ingredient of the offence of cheating. In other words, ‘mens rea’ on the part of the accused must be established before he can be convicted of an offence of cheating. For the purpose of holding a person guilty u/s 420 of the IPC, the evidence adduced must establish beyond reasonable doubt, mens rea on the part of the accused. Furthermore, there has to be a dishonest intention from the very beginning, which is a sine qua non to hold the accused guilty for commission of the said offence. In the case of Mahadeo Prasad v. State of West Bengal, it was held that in order to constitute the offence of cheating, the intention to deceive should be in existence at the time when the inducement was offered. It is necessary to show that a person had fraudulent or dishonest intention at the time of making the promise, to say that he committed an act of cheating. A mere failure to keep up promise subsequently cannot be presumed as an act leading to cheating. In the case of Hari Prasad Chamaria v. Bishun Kumar Surekha and others, it was held that unless the complaint showed that the accused had dishonest or fraudulent intention at the time the complainant parted with the money it would not amount to an offence under Section 420, IPC and it may only amount to breach of contract.

Illustration

  1. A, by pledging as diamond articles which he knows are not diamonds, intentionally deceives Z, and thereby dishonestly induces Z to lend money. A cheats.

  2. A, by falsely pretending to be in the Civil Service, intentionally deceives Z, and thus dishonestly induces Z to let him have on credit goods for which he does not mean to pay. A cheats.

In a landmark judgement, it was held by the Supreme Court that to hold the accused liable for the offence of cheating, the complainant must prove that he delivered his property while acting on the false representations which were made by the accused who at the time of making such representations had knowledge that the act amounts to the offence of cheating and such act must have caused damage to the complainant.

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What is the Trial Procedure in a Section 420 case?

The trial procedure for a case instituted under Section 420 of IPC is similar to that of any other criminal case. The procedure is as follows:

  1. First Information Report: Under Section 154 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, a FIR or First Information Report is registered. FIR puts the case into motion. A FIR is information given by someone (aggrieved) to the police relating to committing of an offense.

  2. Investigation: The next step after the filing of FIR is the investigation by the investigating officer. A conclusion is made by the investigating officer by examining facts and circumstances, collecting evidence, examining various persons and taking their statements in writing and all the other steps necessary for completing the investigation and then that conclusion is filed to the magistrate as a police report.

  3. Charges: If after considering the police report and other important documents the accused is not discharged then the court frames charges under which he is to be tried. In a warrant case, the charges should be framed in writing.

  4. Plea of guilty: Section 241 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 talks about the plea of guilty, after framing of the charges the accused is given an opportunity to plead guilty, and the responsibility lies with the judge to ensure that the plea of guilt was voluntarily made. The judge may upon its discretion convict the accused.

  5. Prosecution evidence: After the charges are framed, and the accused pleads not guilty, then the court requires the prosecution to produce evidence to prove the guilt of the accused. The prosecution is required to support their evidence with statements from its witnesses. This process is called “examination in chief”. The magistrate has the power to issue summons to any person as a witness or order him to produce any document.

  6. Statement of the accused: Section 313 of the Criminal Procedure Code gives an opportunity to the accused to be heard and explain the facts and circumstances of the case. The statements of accused are not recorded under oath and can be used against him in the trial.

  7. Defence evidence: An opportunity is given to the accused in a case where he is not being acquitted to produce so as to defend his case. The defense can produce both oral and documentary evidence. In India, since the burden of proof is on the prosecution the defense, in general, is not required to give any defense evidence.

  8. Judgement: The final decision of the court with reasons given in support of the acquittal or conviction of the accused is known as judgement. In case the accused is acquitted, the prosecution is given time to appeal against the order of the court. When the person is convicted, then both sides are invited to give arguments on the punishment which is to be awarded. This is usually done when the person is convicted of an offense whose punishment is life imprisonment or capital punishment.



What is the Procedure of Appeal in a case under Section 420?

Except for the statutory provisions laid down by The Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 or any other law which is in force, an appeal cannot lie from any judgment or an order of a criminal court. Thus, there is no vested right to appeal as such as even the first appeal will be subjected to statutory limitations. The justification behind this principle is that the courts which try a case are competent enough with the presumption that the trial has been conducted fairly. However, as per the proviso, the victim has a right to appeal against any order passed by the Court under special circumstances comprising of a judgment of acquittal, conviction for lesser offence or inadequate compensation.

Generally, same sets of rules and procedures are employed to govern the appeals in the Sessions Courts and High Courts (highest court of appeal in a state and enjoys more powers in matters where appeal is permissible). The highest court of appeal in the country is the Supreme Court and hence, it enjoys the most extensive discretionary and plenary powers in the cases of appeals. Its powers are largely governed by the provisions laid down in, Indian Constitution, and the Supreme Court (Enlargement of Criminal Appellate Jurisdiction), 1970.

The accused has been given the right to appeal to the Supreme Court against the judgment of the High Court if the High Court has reversed an order of his acquittal on appeal by convicting him, thereby, sentencing him to imprisonment for life or for ten years or more, or to death. Understanding the relevance of a criminal appeal being made to the Supreme Court, the same law has also been laid down in Article 134(1) of the Indian Constitution under the appellate jurisdiction of the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court (Enlargement of Criminal Appellate Jurisdiction) Act, 1970, has also been passed by the legislature in consonance with Article 134(2) of the Indian Constitution to confer additional powers on the Supreme Court to entertain and hear appeals from the High Court under certain conditions.

A similar right to appeal has been granted to one or all accused persons if more than one person have been convicted in a trial and such order has been passed by the court. However, there are certain circumstances under which no appeal shall lie. These provisions have been laid down under Section 265G, Section 375 and Section 376 of The Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973.

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How to get Bail in a Section 420 case?

In order to apply for bail when accused under Section 420 of the IPC, the accused will have to submit an application for bail in the court. The court will then send the summons to the other party and will fix a date for the hearing. On the date of hearing, the court will hear arguments from both sides and would give a decision based on the facts and circumstances of the case.

In case the accused has an apprehension of an arrest under Section 420 of the IPC, he or she can also file an application for anticipatory bail with the help of a criminal lawyer. The lawyer will file the anticipatory bail application in the requisite court having the authority to adjudge the particular criminal matter along with a vakalatnama. The court will then notify a public prosecutor about the anticipatory bail application and would ask him to file objections, if any. Thereafter, the court will appoint a date of hearing and after hearing the final arguments of both the parties would give a judgment based on the facts and circumstances of the case.



Nature of Offence under Section 420 of IPC

The offence under section 420 of Indian Penal Code, is a cognizable offence, meaning thereby, if a person has committed an offence under this section the police can arrest such person without a warrant. An offence under this section is non-bailable in nature and is liable to be investigated and decided by the Judicial Magistrate of First Class who is having authority over the area where such offence has been committed.



Important Aspects Related to the Offence of Cheating

Some of the important aspects relating to cheating that are taken into consideration while dealing with a case instituted under Section 420 of the Indian Penal Code have been discussed below:

1. Dishonest Intention Should be Present at the Time of Making the Promise

Deception and dishonest intention are important elements to constitute the offence of cheating under IPC. The presence of dishonest intention is important to hold a person guilty of the offence. The fact that dishonest intention was present at the time of making the promise is to be proved in order to hold the accused guilty for the offence of cheating. Dishonest intention at the time of making the promise cannot be inferred by subsequent non-fulfilment of promise.

2. Absence of Intention to Honour the Promise at the Time of False Representation

The offence of cheating has an element of fraudulent or dishonest intention from the very beginning. When a party makes a false representation to another party in order to gain some profit, the intention to honour the promise at the time of false representation is presumed to be absent.

3. Dishonesty Causes Either Wrongful Gain or Wrongful Loss

Acting dishonestly is defined under Section 24 of IPC as doing an act or omitting to do any act which causes a wrongful gain to one person or a wrongful loss of a property to a particular person. The act done in order to gain a property wrongfully or cause a loss to another person wrongfully is said to be done dishonestly.

4. False Pretence to be inferred from Circumstances

False statements and representations made with fraudulent intent in order to gain a profit by cheating are known as a false pretence. It is not necessary that every pretence will be a false one, it has to be inferred from the circumstances. For instance, a person may have induced the credit or delivery of property but still, it might not be sufficient as it can be a false pretence and the credit or delivery would not have been given or delivered. A false pretence can be used where the party wants to come in a contract with the other party. There should be an intention to cheat, deceive or commit fraud on the part of a person. Intention to commit cheating plays an important part. False pretence must be inferred from the circumstances of the case.

5. Mens Rea is an Essential Ingredient of Cheating under IPC

Mens rea refers to the mental state or intention of a person in committing a crime. It is a mental state of the accused which is taken into consideration while deciding the liability for a crime. Mens rea has to be proved as it an essential ingredient for the offence of cheating. It has to be proved that the accused deliberately committed the offence of cheating with a prearranged plan. If mens rea for the offence is proved then the accused can be held liable for the offence of cheating under IPC.

6. Damage to Body, Mind, Reputation or Property Caused or Likely to be Caused

Cheating is done by a person to another by making him believe something to be true which actually is not. Cheating affects a person’s body, reputation or property of which the person may be in possession or ownership of. Cheating can be done by a person who is in a fiduciary relationship, it affects the mind of the person who has been cheated. Cheating can be done by a person by misrepresenting the facts or by using false evidence in order to deceive the other party. The person who is deceived believes the representations made by the party deceiving to be true and then it further miserably affects the person both mentally and physically. Cheating can result in stress, tension, and affect a person’s mental health miserably. It can even result in trust issues and make it difficult for the person who has been cheated on to trust another person again. After being cheated on a person can experience low self-esteem and loss in monetary form by loss of the property.

7. Is it Cheating When no Damage caused to Victim

In case when no damages are caused to the complainant by the act of cheating, still the accused according to Section 420 of the IPC will be liable for the offence of cheating as it does create an apprehension in the mind of an individual when he is cheated on by a person. The intention and objective of the person cheating are also taken into consideration and if it is found that the accused had a malafide intention to cheat on the person then the accused will be held guilty for the offence of cheating under Section 420 of the IPC.

The intention of the accused is important and has to be taken into consideration while deciding the guilt of the accused. Generally, the complaint is filed under Section 420 of IPC when a person suffers from a defect in the services or product which is consumed by him from the cheater, or in case the individual is charged with more price than the MRP for a product or a service, or when a person suffers from losses and damages from unfair trade practices etc. but in case if the person cheated on does not suffer from a monetary loss or damage, the accused can still be held liable for cheating under Section 420 of the IPC.

8. Is it Cheating When the Accused is not benefitted but the Complainant Suffers Loss

Since cheating is both a civil as well as criminal wrong and if there is no benefit enjoyed by the other party and loss have been inferred to the party who is been cheated, then, in that case, the complainant company can sue the accused for cheating.

In the case of Sebastian vs R. Jawaharaj, it was held that the accused was liable for cheating and forgery under section 420 and 465 of IPC respectively as he cheated on the complainant by providing faulty services to him but still no benefit was enjoyed by the accused after providing faulty services but because of it the complainant suffered from losses.

Even if the accused does not earn a profit or enjoys a benefit but the complainant suffers a loss then the complainant can bring an action for cheating under IPC.

9. Sustaining Loss, not a Criterion for Establishing the Offence of Cheating

Under sec 420 of IPC, only a person who is not a consumer of the said cheated goods or did not purchase the services or goods for commercial and selling purpose or is not entitled to enjoy the benefits from the goods or services is not entitled to sue the accused for cheating under IPC. A consumer or a person entitled to benefit from the goods or services can sue the accused for the offence of cheating irrelative of the fact whether any loss was suffered by him or not. Even if the complainant does not sustain a loss, he can still bring a lawsuit under IPC for cheating.

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Civil vs. Criminal Liability under Section 420

The difference between civil and criminal liability is determined based on the intention of the accused. It is significant to take note of the intention of the accused at the time of the commitment of the offence and then impose either civil or criminal liability. In the case of commercial transactions, it often becomes difficult to decide which type of liability should be imposed. However, mere breach of a contract does not constitute cheating under Section 420 unless it can be proved that the accused had dishonest intentions since the initiation of the contract.



False Promise to Marry: Whether Cheating or Not?

The question arises as to whether a false promise to marry made by the accused to deceive the woman for having sexual intercourse amounts to cheating or not? The court of law in the judgment of Ravichandran v. Mariyammal (1992) Cr LJ 1675 (Mad), held that making false representation and deceiving any woman and having mutual intercourse is an act amounting to the offence of cheating and punishable under section 417 of the IPC.

This case was taken as a precedent in the case of Mailsami v. State of Tamil Nadu(1994) Cr LJ 2238 (Mad), in which the accused made promises to marry, had sexual intercourse and made her pregnant. When the woman was six months pregnant, the accused made a condition to marry, which was to abort the pregnancy. The victim refused to do so. The court decided that the deception of the accused had induced the victim to do something which would not have been done if not deceived and induced so. Thus, the act of accused amounts to cheating and was made punishable under section 417.

But in order to convict the accused, it is necessary to prove that the promises made by the accused for inducing the victim to have sexual intercourse, was false. It is also necessary to prove that those promises were made with fraudulent intent, with no intention of honouring it and must be motivated with a desire to have sexual intimacy.



Common Questions related to Section 420 IPC

  1. What refers to dishonest inducement?

Dishonest inducement refers to an act where a person dishonestly leads someone to do something and doing of such an act causes damage or harm to the person who has been dishonestly induced.

  1. What is meant by property and delivery of property?

The term property has not been defined under this Act but property means anything that is owned by a person. It includes movable property such as car, immovable property such as land, tangible which can be seen or touched as well as intangible which cannot be seen or touched such as ownership etc. Property includes anything that is owned by a person who has a right of possession and exclusive use over the property which has monetary value. Delivery of property refers to transfer of rights over the property to another person. Such transfer may be of all or any one or more of the rights in the property.

  1. What is cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property?

According to section 420 of Indian Penal Code, when a person by way of cheating, dishonestly induces any person or make him believe to deliver any property, or induces such person to make or alter or destroy the whole or any part of a valuable security which is a document whereby any legal right is created, or any other thing which is signed or sealed and is capable of being converted into a valuable security.



Testimonials

  1. “I was cheated by one of my friends. I had given a loan to him against which he had given me a postdated cheque. When the date of repayment came, I deposited the cheque which was bounced. When I enquired about it with my friend, he said he doesn’t have money in the bank and would need some more time to repay the loan. When I followed up later, he kept on saying he doesn’t have the money and one day he flipped on his words totally. He said that he had repaid the loan and upon repayment also I have not returned the cheque to him. Upon this I consulted a lawyer and as per my lawyer’s advice filed a cheque bounce and cheating case against him. It went on for almost 1.5 years after which the Court convicted him of cheating under Section 420 and sentenced him to imprisonment of 2 years.”

- Aman Gupta

  1. “I was in a relationship with this girl who wanted to be an actress. Whenever she needed money I helped her. I paid for almost everything for her including her portfolio, the rent of her apartment along with the photoshoots. One day she came to me and said her mother was not well and she needed to go to her hometown to be with her. She asked me for some money which I willingly gave her to help her with her mother’s treatment. Months later I figured out that everything I knew or believed about her was all staged. I filed an FIR against her for cheating immediately. Upon investigation it was found she had done this to several others. When police got to know about her whereabouts, she was arrested. The Court, after examining my case thoroughly, sentenced her to be imprisoned for 3 years.”

- Jai Rajpurohit

  1. “I am an art consultant and my clients are mostly rich industrialists or filmmakers. I was on a project for this one client who needed an antique made by an Italian artist. While doing my market research I came across this website which dealt in Italian art collections. I contacted them for the particular piece of antique and they confirmed that they could arrange it for me. I paid them and the art piece was delivered to me. When kept in an event, one of the guests confirmed that the piece was a fake as he had already purchased the original. Upon investigation the allegation was confirmed. I immediately filed a complaint with the help of my lawyer against the website and its owners, who were later arrested. The Court also held in our favour and imprisoned the owners and also ordered them to refund the amount paid by us with interest.”

- Sparsha Purushotham

  1. “My manager who handled all the operations for my firm had given my cheques with my forged signatures to various vendors. The cheques was drawn on a bank account which was not operational. When the vendors deposited the cheque, they bounced and a case was filed against me and my company for committing fraud. In my defence I filed a counter claim against my manager who had fraudulently forged my signatures on the cheques and had distributed the same to the vendors. Upon forensic examination of the same my claim was proved and the manager was sentenced to imprisonment for a period of 4 years.”

- Sonu Sugandh

  1. “Me and my wife had contacted this builder to purchase a flat. He showed us one project which was under construction and the blueprints of the apartment once it was complete. We liked the project and booked one of the apartment by paying half of the payment in advance. The deadline for the project was over and even after following up with builder several times we were not provided a proper answer. One day we got to know that the builder has abandoned the project and has ran away with all the money of the buyers. We contacted LawRato, who provided us a lawyer upon whose advise we jointly filed a case of fraud and cheating against the builder with all the other buyers. It took a 3 year long legal battle but atlast we won the case. The Court ordered the builder to repay the amount paid to it by the buyers with interest and was imprisoned for a period of 3 years.”

- Ravi Jalan

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Important Cases and Judgments related to Cheating

1. State of Kerala v. A. Pareed Pillai and another
In the case of State of Kerala v. A. Pareed Pillai and another, a two-Judge bench ruled that, in order to prove an individual guilty of the crime of cheating, it must be proved that there was a dishonest intention on the accused’s part at the time of making the commitment and such dishonest intention could not be concluded from the mere reality that he couldn’t subsequently fulfil the commitment. A similar view was taken into consideration in the case of S.W. Palanitkar and Ors. v. State of Bihar & Anr.

2. Hiralal Harilal Bhagwati v. CBI
The case of Hiralal Harilal Bhagwati v. CBI was related to a partnership dispute, where Respondent no. 2 lodged a complaint of cheating against the appellant in association to the tutorial business he was running, known as ‘Pranjali,’ which administered classes in management education. In this case, he stated that the present applicants contacted him via his agents who owned a subsidiary business of Hughes Network Organization, USA. The court determined the established rule, through a catena of rulings, that, in order to determine the crime of cheating, it is necessary for the complainant to prove that the perpetrator had a fraudulent or dishonest intention at the time of creating a commitment or representation.

By his actual inability to uphold promise, it is not right to infer a criminal intent at the outset, that is, at the moment where the commitment was made. Also, it is seen that the exemption certificate contained the proper prerequisites which had to be fulfilled after the machine was imported. Therefore, since the GCS did not meet it, it properly paid the required duties without taking full advantage of the certificate of exemption. The behavior of the GCS explicitly showed that, at the time of filing an application for exemption, there was no false or dishonest purpose, either of the GCS or of the appellants in their capacity as office-bearers. Even in the case of Vir Prakash Sharma v. Anil Kumar Agarwal, it had been held that the underpayment or non-payment of the price of the goods alone does not constitute the commission of an offence of fraud or cheating or a criminal breach of trust.

3. Cargo Movers Pvt. Ltd v. Dhanesh Jain Badarmal and Anr
In the case of All Cargo Movers Pvt. Ltd v. Dhanesh Jain Badarmal and Anr., the Supreme Court of India stated that, “Furthermore, for that reason, the claims in the complaint petition must reveal the required ingredients. When a civil suit is ongoing and the complaint petition has been lodged one year after the civil suit has been lodged, we do not, in order to decide if such charges are prima facie, reveal the correspondence exchanged between the parties and other accepted information. This is one thing to claim that the Court does not recognize the appeal of the complainant at this juncture, but it is another thing to suggest that it is, therefore, impermissible to glance through the accepted records in order to practice the intrinsic jurisdiction of this Court. Criminal proceedings should not be facilitated if the Court’s procedure is considered to be mala fide or, otherwise, coercive. Superior courts will always aim to represent the ends of justice while using control.”

4. Laxmi Narayan Singh v. State of Bihar
In the case of Laxmi Narayan Singh v. State of Bihar, the dispute was related to the election to the Bihar State Co-operative Bank Limited Management Committee of which, out of a total vacancy of thirteen, six persons were named as directors to the managing committee. The court held that the cheque was issued by security but did not provide credit assistance in the Bank. The court ruled that, under such cases, while the accused’s conduct was particularly reprehensible, the prosecution, under Section 420 of the IPC, collapsed in the absence of any dishonest motive, and the conviction must be set aside.

5. Satishchandra Ratanlal Shah v. Government of Gujarat
In the recent case of Satishchandra Ratanlal Shah v. Government of Gujarat, it was held that the appellant‘s mere failure to refund the loan sum cannot give rise to criminal liability for theft until the dishonest or fraudulent intention is revealed right from the onset of the contract because the crux of the crime is the mens rea of this individual. The reference of this case was made in Nagarajan v. Jinnah Saheb as well. It said that offering a cheque instead of money due, in the information that the drawer did not have funds with the bank, would not lead to an offence of cheating in the absence of any evidence to prove that the individual to whom the cheque was issued parts with any property, or that he did something he should not have done if he had understood that the cheque would have been dishonored.

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How can a Lawyer help you in a case under Section 420?

Being charged with a crime, whether major or minor, is a serious matter. A person facing criminal charges risks severe penalties and consequences, such as jail time, having a criminal record, and loss of relationships and future job prospects, among other things. While some legal matters can be handled alone, a criminal arrest of any nature warrants the legal advice of a qualified criminal lawyer who can protect your rights and secure the best possible outcome for your case.

FAQ's on IPC Section 420


What offence is defined under IPC 420?

IPC 420 Offence: Cheating and there by dishonestly inducing delivery of property, or the making, alteration or destruction of a valuable security.


What is the punishment for IPC 420 Case?

The punishment for IPC 420 is 7 Years + Fine.


Is IPC 420 cognizable offence or non-cognizable offence?

IPC 420 is a Cognizable.


How to file/defend your case for IPC 420 offence?

Use LawRato for filing/defending your case under IPC 420 with the help of best criminal lawyers near you.


Is IPC 420 bailable or non-bailable offence?

IPC 420 is a Non-Bailable offence.


In what court can IPC 420 be tried?

IPC 420 is tried in the court of Magistrate First Class.


Legal Questions Answered by Top Lawyers on IPC 420


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