The content of this judgement is written by Preeti Birla. She is a content writing Intern at Legal Thirst.
Facts of the Case:
The Supreme Court held that the reason behind the amendment in the act is to eliminate an injustice to the payee. The amendment to the Negotiable Instrument Act is a great effort to strengthen the speedy disposal of cases and discourage unnecessary litigation. It helps the complainant by providing interim compensation and ordering payment by the accused in case of an appeal against the conviction. It is a positive step towards enhancing the credibility of cheques.
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In this case, the Hon’ble Supreme Court has held that the provisions of Section 148 of the NI act are retrospective in nature, and Section 148 of the NI Act, as amended, will be applicable in respect of the appeals against the order of conviction and sentence for the offence under section 138 of the NI Act, even in a case where the criminal complaint about the offence under Section 138 of the NI Act was filed before the enactment the Negotiable Instruments ( Amendment) Act,2018 (20 of 2018) w.e.f.01.09.2018 and that though in amended Section 148 of the NI Act the word used is may, considering the amended Section 148 of the NI Act as a whole to be read with the statement of the objects and reasons of amending the same, it is generally to be construed as a “rule” or “shall” and not directing of the appellant by the appellate court to deposit a minimum of twenty percent of the fine or compensation awarded by the trial court is an exception for which special reasons have to be assigned.
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