Offense committed by the firm is also an offense committed by the partners
An important judgement has been rendered in the case of Sanjay Sreesha V/s SFIO
Hon’ble High Court of Karnataka held that a partnership firm is not a corporate entity, it does not have a separate legal persona and this has several important legal consequences in the relationship between the parties all rights and duties only exist between the parties, inter se the right and duties of the partnership are the rights and duties of the partners for as per the partnership deed.
Therefore, a partner cannot be bifurcated from a firm, for example for a firm minimum two partners are required, if one partner is retired either by resignation or by death, the firm becomes a proprietorship.
Therefore, merely the petitioner running a firm in the name of N.D.S. & CO., but it is not a legal entity and it cannot be placed on par with the companies which is registered under the Companies Act.
A partnership firm is not a separate legal entity distinct from its partner it is merely a collective name given to the individuals composing it and even as per the definition of the Indian Partnership Act, as person who have entered into partnership with one another called individually “partners” and collectively “a firm” and the name under which their business is.
The issue before the Hon’ble High Court was whether a private complaint under Crpc can be filed against the partner of a firm without filing a complaint against the firm.
The partner had not complied with the provisions of section 240(3) of the erstwhile Companies Act , 1956 (Section 217 (8) of the Companies Act, 2013) against a summons for submission of documents and details issued by SFIO.