A 65-year-old handicapped woman has been sentenced to six months in jail in a cheque bouncing case with the court saying that a 2002 amendment to relevant law shows legislature's intention to treat the offenders severely.
"The amendment made in 2002 in Section 138 the Negotiable Instrument Act, clearly brings out the intention of the legislature to deal with the offenders severely," Metropolitan Magistrate Arun Kumar said, while holding Surender Jain guilty of writing her cheque without sufficient fund in her account and breaching the NI Act.
"Section 138 of the NI Act was introduced in the statute book in order to inculcate the faith of business community in transaction through cheques," said the court, referring to the 2002 amendment for enhancing sentences in cheque bouncing cases.
The court also refused to be lenient and release her on probation saying merely being old is no ground for showing leniency to convict.
"In view of object and purposes of section 138 of the NI Act, in my considered opinion, not only benefit of the Probation of Offenders Act cannot be given to the convict for offence under section 138 NI Act but also no leniency can be shown to the convict in awarding the sentence merely because she is an old lady," the court said.
The court's order came on complaint by Jain Co-Operative Bank Ltd, alleging the bouncing of a cheque given to it by the woman to service her debt to it.
It also asked the woman to pay Rs 40,000 to the bank as compensation to it.