The Appellate Division of the Supreme Court has observed in a verdict that the cheque drawer has no obligation to pay the money to a cheque holder if the promise which was considered during issuing the cheque is not fulfilled.
The court said, "Where the amount promised shall depend on some other complimentary facts or fulfilment of another promise and if any cheque is issued on that basis, but that promise is not fulfilled it will not create any obligation on the part of the drawer of the cheque or any right which can be claimed by the holder of the cheque."
"As such dishonesty or fraud cannot be attributed to the respondent in giving stop payment instructions," the court also observed.
A four-member bench of the Appellate Division, headed by Chief Justice Syed Mahmud Hossain, passed the observation while delivering a verdict after hearing a criminal appeal petition filed in this regard.
The apex court delivered the short version of the judgment on February 18 this year and published the full text on the SC's website on Wednesday.
According to the case documents, Imran Rashid Chowdhury, a resident of Sylhet, issued four cheques to Md Abul Kaher Shahin worth Tk 45.0 million as advance on condition that Abul Kaher would bring a land purchaser within 90 days for selling a land of 30 Katha in Gulshan area of the capital city.
Abul Kaher Shahin failed to bring a purchaser finally, but took steps to get the money of the cheques issued in favour of him. He submitted the cheques in the bank concerned, but the cheques were dishonoured as the payment had been stopped by the cheque drawer.
Finally, he filed four cases under section 138 of the Negotiable Instrument Act (NI Act), 1881 against the cheque drawer.
Following the cases, Metropolitan Sessions Judge of Sylhet convicted Imran Rashid Chowdhury, and sentenced him to suffer simple imprisonment for a period of four years, one year in each case, and fined Tk 90.0 million.
Then Imran Rashid Chowdhury came to the High Court against the verdict of the Metropolitan Sessions Judge of Sylhet. Upon hearing his appeal petitions, the High Court on August 31, 2016 acquitted Mr Imran from all the charges brought against him by the holder of the cheques.
Then the cheques' holder filed an appeal with the Appellate Division against the High Court verdict. After hearing the appeal, the apex court delivered the verdict on February 18 this year, upholding the judgement of the High Court division.
Senior Advocate Mansurul Haque Chowdhury appeared in the hearing in the Appellate Division on behalf of the appellant, while Barrister Moudud Ahmed represented Mr Imran Rashid Chowdhury.