Summary of Recent judgment

Case : Bijoy Shankar Mishra v. State of Jharkhand

Date of Order / Judgment: 12th September 2023.

The Matter Heard by Bench: Justice Sanjiv Khanna & Justice S.V.N Bhatti.


The appellant in this case, Bijoy Shankar Mishra, first filed this matter before the JMFS (Judicial Magistrate First Class) in 2016. The case revolved around the dishonored cheques amounting to 45 lakhs rupees. The case had been in trial for around 4 years and when it reached the final argument stage the court of JMFC came to a conclusion that it lacked territorial jurisdiction and discharged the respondent (Sourav Ghosh) against whom the complaint was made under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act, 1881. After the decision given by the JMFC court, the appellant filed a petition before the High Court under Section 482 of the Code. However, in its decision, the High Court dismissed the petition and affirmed the JMFC's ruling. Aggrieved by the decision of the High Court the appellant approached the Supreme Court.

Observation of the Supreme Court

It was observed by the court that “We feel that the JMFC has passed the order without realizing the legal consequences as well as the fact that the trial had remained pending for more than four years and had proceeded without any objection to territorial jurisdiction, till the stage of final arguments. There was a lapse and proper legal guidance, which was not provided to the appellant. We feel that the appellant should not suffer on account of a lack of proper legal assistance. Procedural defect/ lapse had a remedy, and was not substantial as to constitute lack of subject-matter jurisdiction.”


The Supreme Court invoked its special powers under Article 142 of the Constitution of India. The Supreme Court in its order highlighted that technical effects and irregularities should never be in the way of pursuit of substantial justice. The Court set aside earlier orders, directing that the trial in the criminal complaint continue in the court of the JMFC, at Jamshedpur, Jharkhand