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Cost of up to Rs 10,000, apart from interest at a rate between 6 and 9 percent will have to be paid by any person of company for cheques being dishonoured. This new circular has been sent to all subordinate courts by high courts as per direction from the Supreme Court.

The circular (see below) states that the complainant will have to fill up a prescribed form for this matter and the cost amounts are also tabulated. This is as per section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act 1881.

The circular says that the court shall issue summons in which the court will have to specifically mention the amount to be deposited by the accused (one whose cheque has been dishonoured for insufficiency, etc.), which shall include “the principal amount of the cheque, the amount of interest calculated at the rate between 6% to 9% per annum considering the facts and circumstances of the case, and also the cost…”

A cheque dishonoured is a criminal offence in India.

Penalty of up to Rs 10,000 for dishonour of cheques

—India Legal Bureau

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