Sessions court has no power to quash any FIR: Bombay high court | India News


MUMBAI: In a full bench judgment, Bombay HC on Wednesday finally clarified that a sessions court is not empowered and thus, can’t quash an FIR, but can interfere with and stay an order passed by a magistrate that directs police, in a private complaint, to register an FIR.
A private complaint is a legal provision to approach a magistrate to seek directions to the police for lodging and probing an FIR for cognizable offences.The magistrate’s power stems from section 156(3) of criminal procedure code.
The sessions court can stay a magistrate’s order under section 156(3) for police to register an FIR. In such a case, when FIR is yet to be registered, the interim stay bars police from registering it or starting any probe, held Justices Revati Mohite Dere, N J Jamadar and S U Deshmukh on the full bench.
The second scenario is if an FIR gets registered before the sessions court can pass interim orders. Here, the sessions court can stay a further probe, and even set aside the magistrate’s order, but only on proof that the lower court wrongly or illegally exercised its jurisdiction in the first place, HC ruled. The full bench clarified that if the order is set aside by sessions after FIR is filed or after chargesheet is submitted, it would not result in quashing of FIR or criminal prosecution.
The full bench had last Aug reserved a legal reference on the vexed issue for orders. In one matter, the sessions court had quashed a Kalyan magistrate’s order to register an FIR and probe offences of cheating against former KDMC civic chief filed in 2022.


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