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M Reddy   27 February 2021

can I file 420 (cheating) against the construction company MD

I am a civil works sub contractor. I have completed the works under agreed work order. even after completion of works (it's nearly 2 years) the main contractor is not paying my bills. I do not wish to go for arbitration. I want to file cheating case against Managing Director of that Company.
is it possible? pls advice.


 2 Replies

Vasundhara Singh (Student)     05 June 2021

 Hello!  

The laws made by the legislature lay down a separate procedure for civil and criminal complaints. The remedy in case of breach of contract is usually a civil remedy that is taken to civil courts for recovery of compensation from the opposite party. If the plaintiff or the aggrieved party is not satisfied with the outcome of the proceeding or is not interested in the civil suit, he can move to the magistrate with a criminal complaint against the other party.  

The magistrate has the right to examine the complainant under the oath as per section 200 of Criminal Procedure Code, 1973 and upon satisfaction, if he feels there is a case, he moves forward with the case or he may dismiss the complaint under Section 203 of Crpc.   

The Supreme Court in the case of Debendra Nath Bhattacharya v. The State of West Bengal and another examined the scope of section 203 and held that if scrutiny of complaint shows that the essential ingredients of offence alleged are absent or that the dispute is only civil, then it will constitute sufficient ground to dismiss the complaint under Section 203 of CrPC.  

In the case of Hriday Ranjan Prasad Verma & Ors. v. State of Bihar & Anr, Apex court held that mere breach of a contract cannot be a ground for criminal prosecution as the fraudulent or dishonest intention has to be shown right at the beginning of the transaction to culminate the offence of Cheating. ‘Intention’ is an essential ingredient that has to be established for proving the criminal offence.     

It will be on the opinion of the judge and the fact of the cases whether a civil and criminal complaint will be entertained by the court.  

Best Regards,       

Vasundhara Singh      

Law Student      

Nirali Nayak   13 June 2021

Hello sir, greetings of the day.
Looking at your query, yes you can definitely file cheating case against Managing Director of that Company under Section 420 of Indian Penal Code. Section 420 of IPC deals with the cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of the property and states that, whoever cheats and commits dishonestly inducing the person deceived to deliver any property to any person, 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 descripttion for a term which may extend to seven years, and shall also be liable to fine. Therefore if your MD is not paying you for your work, then he is liable under this act.
Hope this answers your question.
Regards
Nirali Nayak
Law Student


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