Section 138

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Section 138 of Negotiable Instruments Act


(Section 6) A “cheque” is a bill of exchange drawn on a specified banker and not expressed to be payable otherwise than on demand and it includes the electronic image of a truncated cheque and a cheque in the electronic form. This expression includes “a cheque in the electronic form” and “a truncated cheque”.

Electronic cheque (e-cheque) is the image of a normal paper cheque generated, written and signed in a secure system using digital signature and asymmetric crypto system. An electronic cheque is nothing more than an ordinary cheque produced on a computer system and instead of signing it in ink, it is signed using the digital equivalent of ink. After the coming into force of The Negotiable
Instruments (Amendment And Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, 2002, legal recognition has been accorded to e-cheques and they have been brought at par with the normal cheques. Now, a ‘cheque’ includes an echeque.

Section 138 Negotiable Instruments Act comes into force for Dishonour of cheque for insufficiency, etc., of funds in the account:

The Section states:

Where any cheque drawn by a person on an account maintained by him with a banker for payment of any amount of money to another person from out of that account for the discharge, in whole or in part, of any debt or other liability, is returned by the bank unpaid, either because of the amount of money standing to the credit of that account is insufficient to honor the cheque or that it exceeds the amount arranged to be paid from that account by an agreement made with that bank, such person shall be deemed to have committed an offence and shall, without prejudice to any other provision of this Act, be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to two years, or with fine which may extend to…...

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