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Kerala High Court: Principle of Locus Standi not applicable in Criminal Jurisprudence

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Judge Gavel Law Insider

Mitali Palnitkar

Published On: February 16, 2022 at 16:06 IST

The Kerala High Court ruled that a Complaint cannot be returned by the Magistrate merely on the ground that it was filed by the wife of the Complainant.

Justice K Haripal emphasized that the principle of Locus Standi does not apply in Criminal Jurisprudence. The Criminal Law can be set in motion by any person.

The wife filed a Petition as her husband was injured in a road accident. He was in an immobile stage as he sustained grievous injuries.

The Petitioner alleged that the Crime was not registered despite an intimation had been given to the Sub-Inspector by the hospital. She stated that she had lodged a Complaint before the City Police Commissioner but no action was taken. Therefore, she approached the Judicial Magistrate of First Class with a Complaint.

She lodged the Complaint alleging Offences under Sections 279, 337 and 338 of the Indian Penal Code. However, the Complaint was returned stating, “The Petition was filed by the wife of the Complainant.”

The Petitioner was aggrieved and approached the High Court. The Court observed that the Magistrate’s act was ‘astonishing’ and declared it to be illegal, unsustainable and liable to be quashed.

The Judge also observed a note put up by ministerial staff on the last page of the Complaint and stated it was disturbing. He also stated that the staff members cannot make a suggestion or note in Judicial matters.

Therefore, the Court quashed the impugned Order given by the Magistrate. It directed the Magistrate to allow the Complaint and pass Orders within seven days in accordance with law. The Petition was allowed.