HC dismisses cheque bounce case against Leander Paes

Mumbai: In a reprieve to tennis ace Leander Paes, the Bombay High Court has dismissed a cheque bounce case filed against him by a city-based interior designer.

Justice R Chavan dismissed Mustafa Eisa`s petition challenging a magistrate`s order acquitting Paes in the case.

The High Court dismissed the petition as neither Eisa nor his advocates were present when the petition was scheduled for hearing on several occasions.

Eisa`s complaint had alleged that two cheques worth Rs 15 lakh issued to him bounced after Paes issued stop-payment instructions to the bank. The amount was for work done by Eisa at Paes` Carter Road suburban residence.

The magistrate had on September 20, 2011, dismissed Eisa`s complaint and acquitted Paes as no one appeared for Eisa.

Eisa then moved the High Court saying his lawyer had sought adjournment for the first time on September 20, 2011 but the magistrate dismissed his complaint saying the parties were not obeying the court`s orders and have not shown readiness to proceed further.

According to Eisa, process was issued against Paes and trial had begun. Thereafter, his lawyer Ashish Gupta started cross examination.

Eisa`s complaint on March 24, 2008, alleged that Paes had approached him for designing his residence following which work was executed and invoices were issued from time to time.

According to Eisa, Paes issued two cheques of Rs 10 and 5 lakh but they were dishonoured by his (Eisa`s) bank with remarks "payment stopped by drawer".

Eisa then sent a legal notice to Paes asking him to pay but when he did not get any response, he filed a complaint under section 138 (dishonour of cheque for insufficiency of funds) of the Negotiable Instruments Act.

On June 21 this year, when Eisa`s petition came up for hearing, Justice Chavan noted that no one was present for him and "dismissed the complaint".


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