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PUBLISHED IN http://judis.nic.in/supremecourt/filename=40486 Page 1 REPORTABLE IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA CRIMINAL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CRIMINAL APPEAL NO. 811 OF 2013 (Arising out of S.L.P. (Crl.) No. 6746 of 2012) Sharanjit Kaur & Anr. …. Appellant(s) Versus State of Punjab …. Respondent(s) WITH CRIMINAL APPEAL No. 812 OF 2013 (Arising out of S.L.P. (Crl.) No. 9690 of … Continue reading

a complaint against the respondents alleging commission of offences punishable under Sections 468 and 471 of the IPC. Crime No.41/10 was accordingly registered in the Central Crime Branch, Chennai Suburban, St. Thomas Mount for the said offences against respondents 2, 3 and 4. Aggrieved, the respondents filed Criminal O.P. No.15917 of 2010 for quashing of the FIR as also investigation in connection therewith =suit based on two forged sale deeds = In Iqbal Singh Marwah’s case (supra) a Constitution Bench of this Court had authoritatively declared that Section 195(1)(b)(ii) Cr.P.C. was attracted only when the offences enumerated in the said provision have been committed with respect to a document after it has been produced or given in evidence in any court and during the time the same was in custodia legis.= It would be a strained thinking that any offence involving forgery of a document if committed far outside the precincts of the Court and long before its production in the Court, could also be treated as one affecting administration of justice merely because that document later reached the court records.- The sequitur of the above discussion is that the bar contained in Section 195(1)(b)(ii) of the Code is not applicable to a case where forgery of the document was committed before the document was produced in a court.”- the bar contained in Section 195 against taking of cognizance was not attracted to the case at hand as the sale deeds relied upon by GWL for claiming title to the property in question had not been forged while they were in custodia legis.= In the light of the above, the High Court was wrong in quashing the FIR on the ground that the allegations did not constitute an offence even when the same were taken to be true in their entirety. It was also, in our view, wrong for the High Court to hold that the respondents were not the makers of the documents or that the filing of a civil suit based on the same would not constitute an offence. Whether or not the respondents had forged the documents and if so what offence was committed by the respondents was a matter for investigation which could not be prejudged or quashed by the High Court in exercise of its powers under Section 482 of Cr.P.C. or under Article 226 of the Constitution of India.

  ‘ ITEM NO. Judgment Court No.10 SECTION IIA     S U P R E M E C O U R T O F I N D I A RECORD OF PROCEEDINGS   CRIMINAL APPEAL NO. …. OF 2013 @ SLP(Crl.) No. 1962 of 2011   C.P.SUBHASH Appellant (s)   VERSUS   INSPECTOR OF … Continue reading

motor accident claims =the Hon’ble Supreme Court reported in the case of National Insurance Company Ltd. v. Swaran Singh and others[1] and found that even if the driver of the vehicle does not have a valid driving license so far as the third parties are concerned, the insurance company is liable to pay the same.

THE HON’BLE SRI JUSTICE N.R.L.NAGESWARA RAO   M.A.C.M.A. No. 2681 of 2011   JUDGMENT: The appeal is filed against the judgment dated 23.04.2004 in M.O.P.No.1274 of 2001 on the file of the Motor Accident Claims Tribunal-cum-I Additional District Judge, Visakhapatnam questioning the liability of the insurance company.   A claim for compensation was made for … Continue reading

rail way accident claim =Respondents/applicants are the wife, son and three daughters of the deceased. On 13.08.2001, when the deceased was travelling by train No.7405 Krishna Express from Chirala to Vijayawada, while standing near the door on account of heavy crowd, due to the jerks of the train, he slipped, fell down and died. The ticket was missing in that incident.

                            IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE, ANDHRA PRADESH AT HYDERABAD                         PRESENT                         THE HON‘BLE SRI JUSTICE K.C.BHANU C.M.A.No.363 of 2010.            Date:23.08.2011   Between:- The Union of India, represented by its General Manager, South Central Railway, Secunderabad.       ..Appellant/Respondent And P.Lakshmi Sarojini and others      .. Respondents/Applicants JUDGMENT:- … Continue reading

Penal Code, 1860: ss. 409, 420, 467, 477-A r/w 120-B-Forgery and misappropriation of bank loans-Bank Manager and Field Officer in conspiracy with each other sanctioned and disbursed loans in names of fictitious persons-Trial Court holding both guilty and sentencing them-Acquittal by High Court-HELD: Prosecution has brought ample material on record which led to only one conclusion that accused committed the offences-Exoneration of one of the accused in departmental inquiry initiated only against him having concluded before police investigation stated in the case, would be of no avail as Inquiry Officer did not have benefit of the evidence that was made available in the criminal proceedings-Besides, the inquiry report was not brought on record and factum of exoneration in departmental proceedings was taken as a defence, it was for the accused to bring on record the relevant material, which was not done-High Court also erred in purporting to hold that specimen finger print and handwritings could not have been taken from accused-ss. 5 and 6 of Identification of Prisoners Act, clearly provides for such a contingency-High Court completely misdirected itself in passing a judgment of acquittal-Judgment of High Court set aside-Prevention of Corruption Act, 1944-ss. 5(1) and 5(2)-Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973-Appeal against acquittal-Identification of Prisoners Act, 1920-ss. 5 and 6. Prevention of Corruption Act, 1947: s. 5(1) r/w s.5(2), proviso-Bank Manager and Field Officer forging loans in names of fictitious persons-Both held guilty by trial court-Acquittal by High Court-HELD: Bank Manager completing all formalities required to be complied with for grant of loan including obtaining appraisal report from Field Officer, sanction and disbursement of loan on date of filing of loan application itself-Entire prosecution relating to forgery and misappropriation having been attributed to the Manager, and he having used the appraisal reports prepared by Field Officer, a case is made out to invoke the proviso appended to sub-s.(2) of s.5 in the case of Field Officer-Therefore, while upholding conviction and sentence awarded by trial court as against the Manager, sentence of rigorous imprisonment of three months is imposed on Field Officer-Penal Code, 1860-ss. 409, 420, 467 and 477-A r/w 120-B IPC. Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973: Appeal against acquittal-Jurisdiction of appellate Court-HELD: an appellate court, while entertaining an appeal against acquittal, would be entitled to consider the evidence brought on record and arrive at its own conclusion-Interference with a judgment of acquittal may not be made when two views are possible to be taken but when only one view is possible to be taken, appellate court would not hesitate to interfere with judgment of acquittal-In the instant case no two views are possible to be taken-Accused were rightly held guilty of the offences charged-High Court misdirected itself in passing judgment of acquittal-Judgment of High Court set aside-Penal Code, 1860-ss. 409, 420, 467, 477-A r/w s.120-B-Prevention of Corruption Act, 1947-ss. 5(1), (2). Respondent A-1 and respondent A-2, who were Manager and Field Officer respectively of the appellant Bank, were prosecuted under ss. 409, 420, 467 and 477-A read with s.120-B IPC and s.5 read with s.5(2) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1947. The allegations against them were that during the period 7.12.1984 to 14.8.1986, they conspired with each other in matter of sanctioning and disbursing 6 Crop Loans of Rs.5000/- each in the names of fictitious persons by forging signatures and thumb impressions of proposed borrowers in documents resulting in misappropriation of the proceeds of Rs.30,000/-. The trial court held both the accused guilty of the offences charged and sentenced both of them to rigorous imprisonment for six moths. It rejected the plea of respondent A-2 that in view of the departmental proceedings against him resulting in his exoneration he was entitled to be acquitted. On appeal, the High Court acquitted the accused observing, inter alia, that the procedure adopted for obtaining finger prints being contrary to fundamental rights of the accused, the same was not admissible in evidence; that neither the Bank received any complaint from loanees nor did the prosecution bring any corroborative material on record. In the instant appeals filed by the Bank, it was contended for respondent A-2 that he merely prepared the appraisal report and he was not involved in any forgery; that he joined the service only in 1984 and was transferred on or about 14.8.1986, and subsequent renewals of loans having been prepared in 1987, he was entitled to acquittal. =Allowing the appeals, the Court HELD: 1.1. In the instant case, evidently, the formalities required to be complied with for grant of loan, appraisal report recommendation prepared by respondent A-2 and sanction and disbursement of loan by respondent A-1 were completed on the very same day on which application for grant of loan was filed. It has furthermore been brought on record that PW-21 and PW-22 on whose behalf loan was applied, were known to respondent A-1. They stated that they were residents of a district different than that shown in their applications. This clearly establishes that the transactions were manipulated by respondent A-1. PW-3, in her deposition, in no uncertain line, stated that all transactions right from application to disposal took place in the afternoon of a day and all the documents used to be processed during the lunch hour, whereas as per to the procedure, the disbursement of loan could take place only upon proper verification thereof. The modus operandi of respondent A-1 appeared to be that he had affixed his own thumb impression instead of those of the loanees. Upon sanction of the said loan, the accountant concerned paid the amount of loan to accused A-1. The said loans were also renewed for the years 1986 and 1987. [Para s 12, 14, 24 and 25] [581-C; 582-B-C-D; 584-B-C] 1.2. The finger print expert (PW-17), in his evidence, proved that specimen fingerprints tallied with the disputed fingerprints. PW-17 is a qualified and experienced fingerprint expert. There is no reason to discredit his testimony. Apart from the fingerprints, the prosecution also obtained the specimen handwritings of respondent A-1. Handwritings on the said loan documents/applications for grant of loan was found to be that of accused No.1. The High Court also committed a manifest error in purporting to hold that the specimen fingerprints and handwritings could not have been taken from respondent A-1. Sections 5 and 6 of the Identification of Prisoners Act, 1920 clearly provides for such a contingency. [Paras 15, 17, 18, 34 and 35] [582-E, G; 583-A-B; 586-F-G] State of Bombay v. Kathi Kalu Oghad, AIR (1961) SC 1808, relied on. 1.3. It may be true that there was no documentary evidence to show that the amount had actually been paid in cash to the respondent A-1. But then no documentary evidence would be available as it was for the respondent A-1, as Manager of the Bank, to hand over the amount in cash to the loanees upon receiving the same from PW-3. Besides, PW-5 also stated that debit vouchers (Ext. P-6) contained only one stamp showing as cash paid but it did not contain his signature, although it purported to have been shown to be his. Ext. P-6 was, therefore, a forged document. [Paras 20 and 21] [583-E-F, D] 1.4. PWs 3 and 5 who had been working in the same branch of the bank with the respondents have proved the procedure adopted in the matter of grant of loan. There cannot, therefore, be any doubt whatsoever that ample materials have been brought on record by the prosecution which led to only one conclusion that the accused were responsible therefor. [Para 22] [583-G] 1.5. It may be that no act of forgery and misappropriation has been attributed to respondent A-2, but he was the one who had prepared the appraisal report. After preparation of such appraisal report, the loan amounts were sanctioned and the amount of loan purported to have been paid to the loanees and, therefore, he was also guilty of commission of the said offences. [Para 23] [583-H; 584-A] 2. The High Court purported to have laid emphasis on exoneration of respondent A-2 in departmental enquiry. The departmental enquiry was initiated only against respondent A-2 and was completed even before the police investigation in the case started. The enquiry officer did not have the occasion to consider all the materials brought on record by the prosecution which clearly established the involvement of the respondents. Exoneration of respondent A-2 in the departmental proceedings cannot, therefore, lead to the conclusion that he was not guilty of commission of the offences wherefor he was charged. Furthermore, the enquiry report has not been brought on record. Besides, the factum of exoneration of respondent A-2 in the departmental proceedings was raised by way of defence. It was, therefore, obligatory on his part to bring on record all the relevant documents, including the findings of the Enquiry Officer. [Paras 27, 28, 29 and 33] [574-E-F; 584-G-H; 585-A; 586-D-E] P.S. Rajya v. State of Bihar, [1996] 9 SCC 1, distinguished. State of Haryana v. Bhajan Lal, [1990] 3 SCR 259=[1992] Supp. 1 SCC 335 and Superintendent of Police (CBI) v. Deepak Chowdhary & Ors., [1995] 6 SCC 225, referred to. 3. The High Court, therefore, completely misdirected itself in passing a judgment of acquittal in favour of the respondents. The trial judge had assigned cogent reasons in support of its findings. The High Court did not meet the said reasoning. The impugned judgment of the High Court cannot be sustained. [Paras 26 and 37] [584-D; 859-B] 4. The Court is not oblivious of the fact that presumption of innocence is a human right and when an accused is acquitted by a court, such presumption becomes stronger. It is, however, a trite law that an appellate court, while entertaining an appeal from a judgment of acquittal, would also be entitled to consider the evidences brought on record by both the prosecution and the defence and arrive at its own decision. Interference with a judgment of acquittal may not be made when two views are possible to be taken, but when on appraisal thereof, only one view is possible, the appellate court would not hesitate to interfere with the judgment of acquittal. In this case, the Court is firmly of the view that no two views are possible to be taken. [Paras 37 and 38] [589-B, D, E] State of Haryana v. Sher Singh & Ors., [2002] 9 SCC 356; Narender Singh & Anr. v. State of M.P., [2004] 10 SCC 699 and Budh Singh & Ors. v. State of U.P., [2006] 9 SCC 731, referred to. 5. The entire prosecution case relating to charges of forgery and misappropriation has been attributed to respondent A-1 alone. Thus, a case has been made out to invoke the proviso appended to sub-section (2) of Section 5 of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1947 in the case of respondent A-2. Furthermore, he worked in the bank for a short period and was still undergoing probation. Forgery and misappropriation was committed by respondent A-1 even thereafter. The appraisal reports prepared by respondent A-2 were used by respondent A-1 also for the subsequent period, namely, 1987 when respondent A-2 was no longer working in the said branch. Therefore, while upholding the conviction and sentence awarded by the trial judge as against respondent A-1, in view of the special reasons recorded in the judgment, a sentence of rigorous imprisonment of three months is imposed on respondent A-2. He shall, however, be liable to pay a fine of Rs.20,000/- (Rupees twenty thousand only) and in default shall undergo a sentence of three months. [Paras 40, 41 and 42] [589-G; 590-A-C] A. Sharan , ASG., Amit Anand Tiwari and P. Parmeswaran for the Appellants. L.N. Rao, R. Santhan Krishnan, K. Radha Rani, P. Vijaya Kumar and D. Mahesh Babu for the Respondents. =Allowing the appeals, the Court HELD: 1.1. In the instant case, evidently, the formalities required to be complied with for grant of loan, appraisal report recommendation prepared by respondent A-2 and sanction and disbursement of loan by respondent A-1 were completed on the very same day on which application for grant of loan was filed. It has furthermore been brought on record that PW-21 and PW-22 on whose behalf loan was applied, were known to respondent A-1. They stated that they were residents of a district different than that shown in their applications. This clearly establishes that the transactions were manipulated by respondent A-1. PW-3, in her deposition, in no uncertain line, stated that all transactions right from application to disposal took place in the afternoon of a day and all the documents used to be processed during the lunch hour, whereas as per to the procedure, the disbursement of loan could take place only upon proper verification thereof. The modus operandi of respondent A-1 appeared to be that he had affixed his own thumb impression instead of those of the loanees. Upon sanction of the said loan, the accountant concerned paid the amount of loan to accused A-1. The said loans were also renewed for the years 1986 and 1987. [Para s 12, 14, 24 and 25] [581-C; 582-B-C-D; 584-B-C] 1.2. The finger print expert (PW-17), in his evidence, proved that specimen fingerprints tallied with the disputed fingerprints. PW-17 is a qualified and experienced fingerprint expert. There is no reason to discredit his testimony. Apart from the fingerprints, the prosecution also obtained the specimen handwritings of respondent A-1. Handwritings on the said loan documents/applications for grant of loan was found to be that of accused No.1. The High Court also committed a manifest error in purporting to hold that the specimen fingerprints and handwritings could not have been taken from respondent A-1. Sections 5 and 6 of the Identification of Prisoners Act, 1920 clearly provides for such a contingency. [Paras 15, 17, 18, 34 and 35] [582-E, G; 583-A-B; 586-F-G] State of Bombay v. Kathi Kalu Oghad, AIR (1961) SC 1808, relied on. 1.3. It may be true that there was no documentary evidence to show that the amount had actually been paid in cash to the respondent A-1. But then no documentary evidence would be available as it was for the respondent A-1, as Manager of the Bank, to hand over the amount in cash to the loanees upon receiving the same from PW-3. Besides, PW-5 also stated that debit vouchers (Ext. P-6) contained only one stamp showing as cash paid but it did not contain his signature, although it purported to have been shown to be his. Ext. P-6 was, therefore, a forged document. [Paras 20 and 21] [583-E-F, D] 1.4. PWs 3 and 5 who had been working in the same branch of the bank with the respondents have proved the procedure adopted in the matter of grant of loan. There cannot, therefore, be any doubt whatsoever that ample materials have been brought on record by the prosecution which led to only one conclusion that the accused were responsible therefor. [Para 22] [583-G] 1.5. It may be that no act of forgery and misappropriation has been attributed to respondent A-2, but he was the one who had prepared the appraisal report. After preparation of such appraisal report, the loan amounts were sanctioned and the amount of loan purported to have been paid to the loanees and, therefore, he was also guilty of commission of the said offences. [Para 23] [583-H; 584-A] 2. The High Court purported to have laid emphasis on exoneration of respondent A-2 in departmental enquiry. The departmental enquiry was initiated only against respondent A-2 and was completed even before the police investigation in the case started. The enquiry officer did not have the occasion to consider all the materials brought on record by the prosecution which clearly established the involvement of the respondents. Exoneration of respondent A-2 in the departmental proceedings cannot, therefore, lead to the conclusion that he was not guilty of commission of the offences wherefor he was charged. Furthermore, the enquiry report has not been brought on record. Besides, the factum of exoneration of respondent A-2 in the departmental proceedings was raised by way of defence. It was, therefore, obligatory on his part to bring on record all the relevant documents, including the findings of the Enquiry Officer. [Paras 27, 28, 29 and 33] [574-E-F; 584-G-H; 585-A; 586-D-E] P.S. Rajya v. State of Bihar, [1996] 9 SCC 1, distinguished. State of Haryana v. Bhajan Lal, [1990] 3 SCR 259=[1992] Supp. 1 SCC 335 and Superintendent of Police (CBI) v. Deepak Chowdhary & Ors., [1995] 6 SCC 225, referred to. 3. The High Court, therefore, completely misdirected itself in passing a judgment of acquittal in favour of the respondents. The trial judge had assigned cogent reasons in support of its findings. The High Court did not meet the said reasoning. The impugned judgment of the High Court cannot be sustained. [Paras 26 and 37] [584-D; 859-B] 4. The Court is not oblivious of the fact that presumption of innocence is a human right and when an accused is acquitted by a court, such presumption becomes stronger. It is, however, a trite law that an appellate court, while entertaining an appeal from a judgment of acquittal, would also be entitled to consider the evidences brought on record by both the prosecution and the defence and arrive at its own decision. Interference with a judgment of acquittal may not be made when two views are possible to be taken, but when on appraisal thereof, only one view is possible, the appellate court would not hesitate to interfere with the judgment of acquittal. In this case, the Court is firmly of the view that no two views are possible to be taken. [Paras 37 and 38] [589-B, D, E] State of Haryana v. Sher Singh & Ors., [2002] 9 SCC 356; Narender Singh & Anr. v. State of M.P., [2004] 10 SCC 699 and Budh Singh & Ors. v. State of U.P., [2006] 9 SCC 731, referred to. 5. The entire prosecution case relating to charges of forgery and misappropriation has been attributed to respondent A-1 alone. Thus, a case has been made out to invoke the proviso appended to sub-section (2) of Section 5 of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1947 in the case of respondent A-2. Furthermore, he worked in the bank for a short period and was still undergoing probation. Forgery and misappropriation was committed by respondent A-1 even thereafter. The appraisal reports prepared by respondent A-2 were used by respondent A-1 also for the subsequent period, namely, 1987 when respondent A-2 was no longer working in the said branch. Therefore, while upholding the conviction and sentence awarded by the trial judge as against respondent A-1, in view of the special reasons recorded in the judgment, a sentence of rigorous imprisonment of three months is imposed on respondent A-2. He shall, however, be liable to pay a fine of Rs.20,000/- (Rupees twenty thousand only) and in default shall undergo a sentence of three months. [Paras 40, 41 and 42] [589-G; 590-A-C] A. Sharan , ASG., Amit Anand Tiwari and P. Parmeswaran for the Appellants. L.N. Rao, R. Santhan Krishnan, K. Radha Rani, P. Vijaya Kumar and D. Mahesh Babu for the Respondents. =2008 AIR 368 , 2007(11 )SCR570 , , 2007(12 )SCALE618 , 2007(12 )JT413

CASE NO.: Appeal (crl.) 1394-1395 of 2004 PETITIONER: State through SPE & CBI, AP RESPONDENT: M. Krishna Mohan & Anr DATE OF JUDGMENT: 12/10/2007 BENCH: S.B. Sinha & Harjit Singh Bedi JUDGMENT: J U D G M E N T S.B. Sinha, J. 1. Correctness of a judgment of acquittal passed by the High Court … Continue reading

Penal Code, 1860: ss. 498A and 406-Framing of charges under-FIR by wife alleging commission of offence u/s 498A and 406/34 by in-laws and husband, on basis of complaint before Women Cell-Charges framed against in-laws and husband u/s 498A and 406/34-Challenge to- Held: There was no allegation of entrustment of property by complainant-wife to her in-laws and husband and its misappropriation by them-Also no allegation of harassment of wife by in-laws with a view to coerce her to meet unlawful demand except husband-Thus, charges u/s 406 against in-laws and husband, and u/s 498A against in-laws quashed-However, charges framed against husband u/s 498A upheld. ss. 498 A and 406-Ingredients for-Explained. Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973: ss 227, 228, 239, 240 and 245 -Duty of court while framing of charges-General guidelines-Held: Court is to evaluate materials on record to find out if facts at their face value disclose existence of ingredients for constituting the alleged offence-It is to consider whether there is a ground for presuming that offence has been committed and not that the ground for convicting the accused is made out-Probative value of materials on record cannot be gone into. There was some matrimonial dispute between the complainant-wife and the appellant no. 3-husband. The complainant filed a complaint in the Crime against Women Cell against appellant no 1 and 2-in laws and appellant no 3, alleging harassment by them. However, the parties entered into a compromise and the complainant joined her husband. Next month the complainant came back to her paternal home for her delivery. The complainant then filed another complaint against the appellants. She recorded a statement alleging misbehavior on part of her in-laws and dowry demand made by them and that they refused to return her Stridhan. FIR was lodged under sections 406 and 498A I.P.C. against the appellants. The charge sheet was filed. The Metropolitan Magistrate held that no case was made out against all the appellants u/s 406 and appellant no. 1 and 2 for offences u/s 498A and discharged all of them. In Revision Petition, the Sessions Court held that the case u/s 406 and 498A was made out and directed the trial court to frame charges accordingly. Appellants then filed Criminal Revision Petition for quashing the charge sheet and consequential proceedings arising out of FIR. High Court upheld the order of Sessions Court. Hence the present appeal =Partly allowing the appeal, the Court HELD: 1. At the stage of framing of charge the court is required to evaluate the material and documents on record with a view to finding out if the facts emerging therefrom, taken at their face value, disclosed the existence of all the ingredients constituting the alleged offence. At that stage, the court is not expected to go deep into the probative value of the material on record. What needs to be considered is whether there is a ground for presuming that the offence has been committed and not a ground for convicting the accused has been made out. At that stage, even strong suspicion founded on material which leads the court to form a presumptive opinion as to the existence of the factual ingredients constituting the offence alleged would justify the framing of charge against the accused in respect of the commission of that offence. [Para 11] [723-D-F] State of Karnataka v. L. Muniswamy , [1977] 2 SCC 699; State of Maharashtra and Ors. v. Som Nath Thapa and Ors., [1996] 4 SCC 659 and State of M.P. v. Mohanlal Soni, [2000] 6 SCC 338, relied on. 2. According to Section 405 I.P.C., the offence of criminal breach of trust is committed when a person who is entrusted in any manner with the property or with any dominion over it, dishonestly misappropriates it or converts it to his own use, or dishonestly uses it, or disposes it of, in violation of any direction of law prescribing the mode in which the trust is to be discharged, or of any lawful contract, express or implied, made by him touching such discharge, or wilfully suffers any other person so to do. Thus, in the commission of the offence of criminal breach of trust, two distinct parts are involved. The first consists of the creation of an obligation in relation to the property over which dominion or control is acquired by the accused. The second is a misappropriation or dealing with the property dishonestly and contrary to the terms of the obligation created. [Para 16] [724-G-H; 725-A] The Superintendent and remembrancer of Legal Affairs, West Bengal v. S.K. Roy, [1974] 4 SCC 230, relied on. 3.1. Section 498A I.P.C. was introduced with the avowed object to combat the menace of dowry deaths and harassment to a woman at the hands of her husband or his relatives. Nevertheless, the provision should not be used as a device to achieve oblique motives. [Para 19] [726-D-E] 3.2. The term “cruelty”, which has been made punishable under Section 498A I.P.C. has been defined in the explanation appended to the said Section, to mean: (i) any wilful conduct which is of such a nature as is likely to drive the woman to commit suicide or to cause grave injury or danger to life, limb or health whether mental or physical of the woman; or (ii) harassment of the woman where such harassment is with a view to coercing her or any person related to her to meet any unlawful demand for any property or valuable security or is on account of failure by her or any person related to her to meet such demand. Therefore, the consequences of “cruelty”,which are either likely to drive a woman to commit suicide or to cause grave injury, danger to life, limb or health, whether mental or physical of the woman or the harassment of a woman, where such harassment is with a view to coercing her or any person related to her to meet any unlawful demand are required to be established in order to bring home an offence under Section 498A I.P.C. [Para 17] [725-C-E] 4.1. In the instant case, from a plain reading of the second complaint filed by the complainant, it is clear that the facts mentioned in the complaint, taken on their face value, do not make out a prima facie case against the appellants for having dishonestly misappropriated the Stridhan of the complainant, allegedly handed over to them, thereby committing criminal breach of trust punishable under Section 406 I.P.C. It is manifestly clear from the afore-extracted complaint as also the relevant portion of the charge-sheet that there is neither any allegation of entrustment of any kind of property by the complainant to the appellants nor its misappropriation by them. Furthermore, it is also noted in the charge-sheet itself that the complainant had refused to take articles back when this offer was made to her by the Investigating Officer. Therefore, the very pre-requisite of entrustment of the property and its misappropriation by the appellants are lacking in the instant case. The Additional Sessions Judge and the High Court erred in law in coming to the conclusion that a case for framing of charge under Section 406 I.P.C. was made out. The charges framed against all the appellants under section 406 I.P.C. are quashed. [Paras 18 and 20] [725-F-H; 726-A-F] 4.2. As regards the applicability of Section 498A I.P.C., in the complaint dated 8.11.1994 there is not even a whisper of a wilful conduct of appellants No. 1 and 2 of harassment of the complainant at their hands with a view to coercing her to meet any unlawful demand by them so as to attract the provisions of Section 498A read with Explanation thereto. The complaint refers to the talk the complainant purports to have had with her husband, appellant No. 3, who is alleged to have told her to come to Bijnore if she apologizes to his father; keeps him happy; obeys his sister and talks to her father (complainant’s) to give her Rs. 50,000/- and V.C.R. and brings these articles to Bijnore. The allegation of misbehaviour on the part of appellant Nos.1 and 2 and the demand of Rs. 50,000/- and V.C.R. by them made by the complainant in her subsequent statement, dated 4.4.1995, was an after thought and not bona fide. Having carefully glanced through the complaint, the F.I.R. and the charge-sheet, the charge under Section 498A I.P.C. is not brought home insofar as appellant Nos. 1 and 2 are concerned and are quashed. However, charge framed against appellant No. 3 under Section 498A I.P.C. is upheld. [Paras 19 and 20] [726-B-F] Onkar Nath Mishra Appellant-In-Person. Pramod Swarup, Saket Singh (for D.S. Mahra), Nalin Tripathi and Anurag Sharma (Rameshwar Prasad Goyal) for the Respondents. =, 2007(13 )SCR716 , 2008(2 )SCC561 , 2007(14 )SCALE403 , 2008(1 )JT20

CASE NO.: Appeal (crl.) 1716 of 2007 PETITIONER: ONKAR NATH MISHRA & ORS. RESPONDENT: STATE (NCT OF DELHI) & ANR. DATE OF JUDGMENT: 14/12/2007 BENCH: ASHOK BHAN & D.K. JAIN JUDGMENT: J U D G M E N T [Arising out of S.L.P. (Criminal) No. 2516 of 2007) D.K. JAIN, J.: Leave granted. 2. This … Continue reading

Penal Code, 1860 – s.304B: Offence of Dowry death – Ingredients required to be proved by the prosecution – Stated. Dowry – Meaning of – Held: For purposes of s.304B IPC, `dowry’ has the same meaning as in s.2 of the Dowry Prohibition Act – Mere demand for `dowry’ before marriage, at the time of marriage or any time after the marriage is an offence – The term `dowry’ is defined comprehensively to include properties of all sorts as it takes within its fold `any property or valuable security’ given or agreed to be given in connection with marriage either directly or indirectly – If a demand for property or valuable security, directly or indirectly, has a nexus with marriage, such demand would constitute `demand for dowry’; the cause or reason for such demand being immaterial – Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961 – s.2 Dowry death – Wife of appellant no.2 died within 3 months of her marriage – She was found dead by hanging from a ceiling fan in the appellants’ house – Allegation that deceased was subjected to cruelty and harassment by appellant no.1 (mother-in-law) and appellant no.2 in connection with demand of motorcycle – Conviction of the appellants u/s.304-B IPC – Challenge to – Held: That the deceased was subjected to harassment and ill-treatment by the appellants after PW-8 (father of the deceased) refused to accede to their demand for purchase of motorcycle is established by the evidence of PW-8 and PW-9 – Then there is evidence of PW-10 that PW-8 had called him and DW-1 to his house where appellant no.1 had made demand of motorcycle – PW-10 stated that he sought to reason to appellant no.1 about inability of PW-8 to give motorcycle at which appellant no.1 got angry and warned that the deceased would not be allowed to stay in her matrimonial home – It was established that unlawful demand of motorcycle was made by the appellants from PW-8 and the deceased was harassed on account of his failure to provide the motorcycle and that led the deceased to commit suicide by hanging – The demand of motorcycle by appellant no.1 from PW-8 was for the appellant no.2 and when PW-8 showed his inability to meet that demand, the appellant no.2 started harassing and ill-treating the deceased – In this view of the matter, it cannot be said that there was no demand by the appellant no.2 – No merit in the contention of the appellants that the demand of motorcycle does not qualify as a `demand for dowry’ – All the essential ingredients to bring home the guilt under s.304B IPC were established against the appellants by the prosecution evidence -Presumption under s.113B of the Evidence Act was fully attracted – The appellants failed to rebut such presumption – Evidence Act, 1872 – s.113B. Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961 – Enactment of – Purpose stated. The wife of appellant no.2/(A-2) died within 3 months of her marriage. She was found dead by hanging from a ceiling fan in the appellants’ house. PW-8, the father of the deceased, is a Rikshawpuller. The trial court held that the prosecution was able to establish that the death was within seven years of her marriage and otherwise than under normal circumstances; that before her death, the deceased was subjected to cruelty and harassment by appellant no.1/(A-1) (mother-in-law) and appellant no.2 in connection with the demand of motorcycle and that the appellants were guilty of causing dowry death. The appellants were convicted by the trial court under Section 304-B IPC and sentenced to suffer seven years’ rigorous imprisonment. The High Court affirmed the conviction and sentence. In the instant appeal, the appellants submitted that it was highly improbable that a demand for a motorcycle would be made from PW-8 knowing well that it could not be fulfilled by him as he was a Rikshawpuller earning Rs. 20/- per day. The appellants contended that the evidence let in by the prosecution was not trustworthy at all and the demand for dowry is not established. They submitted that the only independent witness of demand was DW-1 but he was not examined by the prosecution, though, DW-1 was examined in defence and he has denied that any demand was made by appellant no.1 in his presence. The appellants argued that there was no evidence of demand of motorcycle by the appellant no.2 and further that in any case the demand of motorcycle for the purposes of the business does not qualify as a `demand for dowry’ and, therefore, no offence under Section 304-B IPC can be said to have been made out against the appellants. =Dismissing the appeal, the Court HELD:1.1. Section 304B was inserted in IPC with effect from November 19, 1986 by the Dowry Prohibition (Amendment) Act, 1986. Thereby substantive offence relating to `dowry death’ was introduced in the IPC. For making out an offence of `dowry death’ under Section 304B, the following ingredients have to be proved by the prosecution: (a) death of a woman must have been caused by any burns or bodily injury or her death must have occurred otherwise than under normal circumstances; (b) such death must have occurred within seven years of her marriage; (c) soon before her death, she must have been subjected to cruelty or harassment by her husband or any relative of her husband; and (d) such cruelty or harassment must be in connection with the demand for dowry. Pertinently, for the purposes of Section 304B IPC, `dowry’ has the same meaning as in Section 2 of the Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961. [Paras 11, 12, 13 and 14] [635-E-F; 636-B-F] 1.2. The Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961 was enacted to prohibit the giving or taking of `dowry’ and for the protection of married woman against cruelty and violence in the matrimonial home by the husband and in-laws. The mere demand for `dowry’ before marriage, at the time of marriage or any time after the marriage is an offence. The definition of `dowry’ show that the term is defined comprehensively to include properties of all sorts as it takes within its fold `any property or valuable security’ given or agreed to be given in connection with marriage either directly or indirectly. If a demand for property or valuable security, directly or indirectly, has a nexus with marriage, such demand would constitute `demand for dowry’; the cause or reason for such demand being immaterial. [Paras 15, 17] [637-D-F; 640-C-D] Appasaheb & Anr. v. State of Maharashtra. (2007) 9 SCC 721; S. Gopal Reddy v. State of A.P. (1996) 4 SCC 596; Panjiyar @ Kamlesh Panjiyar v. State of Bihar (2005) 2 SCC 388 – referred to. 2. In the facts of the case, it is clearly established that the deceased died otherwise than under normal circumstances. There is no dispute of fact that death occurred within seven years of her marriage. That the deceased was subjected to harassment and ill-treatment by the appellants after PW-8 refused to accede to their demand for purchase of motorcycle is established by the evidence of PW-8 and PW-9. Then there is evidence of PW-10 that PW-8 had called him and DW-1 to his house where A-1 had made demand of motorcycle. PW-10 stated that he sought to reason to A-1 about inability of PW-8 to give motorcycle at which A-1 got angry and warned that the deceased would not be allowed to stay in her matrimonial home. It is true that the appellants produced DW-1 in defence and he did state in his examination-in- chief that he did not meet A-1 at the house of PW-8 but in cross- examination when he was confronted with his statement under Section 161 Cr.P.C. where it was recorded that he and PW-10 had gone to the house of PW-8 and both of them (PW-10 and DW-1) counselled A-1 to desist from demanding motorcycle but she stuck to her demand, DW-1 had no explanation to offer. The evidence of DW-1 is, therefore, liable to be discarded. In light of the evidence let in by the prosecution, the trial court cannot be said to have erred in holding that it was established that unlawful demand of motorcycle was made by A-1 and A-2 from PW-8 and the decesded was harassed on account of his failure to provide the motorcycle and that led the deceased to commit suicide by hanging. Pertinently, the demand of motorcycle by A-1 from PW-8 was for A-2 and when PW-8 showed his inability to meet that demand, A-2 started harassing and ill-treating the deceased. In this view of the matter, it cannot be said that there was no demand by A-2. [Para 18] [640-D-H; 641-A-C] 3. The High Court has also examined the matter thoroughly and reached the finding that A-1 and A-2 had raised a demand for purchase of motorcycle from PW-8; this demand was made within two months of the marriage and was a demand towards `dowry’ and when this demand was not met, the deceased was maltreated and harassed continuously which led her to take extreme step of finishing her life. The above view of the High Court is acceptable. There is no merit in the contention of the appellants that the demand of motorcycle does not qualify as a `demand for dowry’. All the essential ingredients to bring home the guilt under Section 304B IPC are established against the appellants by the prosecution evidence. As a matter of law, the presumption under Section 113B of the Evidence Act, 1872 is fully attracted in the facts and circumstances of the present case. The appellants have failed to rebut the presumption under Section 113B. [Para 19] [641-D-F] Case Law Reference: (2007) 9 SCC 721 referred to Para 9 (1996) 4 SCC 596 referred to Para 15 (2005) 2 SCC 388 referred to Para 16 CRIMINAL APPELLATE JURISDICTION : Criminal Appeal No. 831 of 2006. From the Judgment & Order date 16.12.2004 of the High Court of Punjab & Haryana at Chandigarh in Criminal Appeal No. 113-S.B. of 1991. V. Madhukar, Paritosh Anil (for Hemantikar Wahi) for the Appellants. Kamal Mohan Gupta, Gaurav Teotia, Sanjeev Kumar for the Respondent.

REPORTABLE IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA CRIMINAL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CRIMINAL APPEAL NO. 831 OF 2006 Bachni Devi & Anr. …Appellants Versus State of Haryana Through Secretary, Home Department …Respondent JUDGEMENT R.M. LODHA, J. The mother (A-1) and son (A-2) are in appeal as both of them have been convicted by the Additional Sessions Judge … Continue reading

whether the complaint filed by the respondent-complainant against the appellants, alleging commission of offences punishable under Sections 211, 500, 109, and 114 read with Section 34 of Indian Penal Code, 1860 was barred by the provisions of Section 195 of 1

REPORTABLE IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA CRIMINAL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CRIMINAL APPEAL NOS.2090-2093 OF 2011 (Arising out of SLP (Crl.) Nos.4161-4164 of 2008 Abdul Rehman & Ors. …Appellants Versus K.M. Anees-ul-Haq …Respondent J U D G E M E N T T.S. THAKUR, J. 1. Leave granted. 2. The short question that arises for determination … Continue reading

When the FIR can be quashed ? =1. Where the allegations made in the First Information Report or the complaint, even if they are taken at their face value and accepted in their entirety do not prima-facie constitute any offence or make out a case against the accused. 2. Where the allegations in the First Information Report and other materials, if any, accompanying the F.I.R. do not disclose a cognizable offence, justifying an investigation by police officers Under Section 156(1) of the Code except under an order of a Magistrate within the purview of Section 155(2) of the Code. 3. Where the uncontroverted allegations made in the FIR or complaint and the evidence collected in support of the same do not disclose the commission of any offence and make out a case against the accused. 4. Where, the allegations in the F.I.R. do not constitute a cognizable offence but constitute only a non-cognizable offence, no investigation is permitted by a police officer without an order of a Magistrate as contemplated Under Section 155(2) of the Code. 5. Where the allegations made in the FIR or complaint are so absurd and inherently improbable on the basis of which no prudent person can ever reach a just conclusion that there is sufficient ground for proceeding against the accused. 6. Where there is an express legal bar engrafted in any of the provisions of the Code or the concerned Act (under which a criminal proceeding is instituted) to the institution and continuance of the proceedings and/or where there is a specific provision in the Code or the concerned Act, providing efficacious redress for the grievance of the aggrieved party. 7. Where a criminal proceeding is manifestly attended with mala fide and/or where the proceeding is maliciously instituted with an ulterior motive for wreaking vengeance on the accused and with a view to spite him due to private and personal grudge. 109. We also give a note of caution to the effect that the power of quashing a criminal proceeding should be exercised very sparingly and with circumspection and that too in the rarest of rare cases; that the Court will not be justified in embarking upon an enquiry as to the reliability or genuineness or otherwise of the allegations made in the F.I.R. or the complaint and that the extraordinary or inherent powers do not confer an arbitrary jurisdiction on the Court to act according to its whim or caprice.”

1 Reportable IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA CRIMINAL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CRIMINAL APPEAL NO. 1356 OF 2004 Union of India & Ors. …….. Appellants Versus Ramesh Gandhi ……… Respondent J U D G E M E N T Chelameswar, J. 1. This appeal arises out of a judgment of the High Court of Calcutta dated … Continue reading

Penal Code, 1860 – s. 302 – Prosecution for murder – Circumstantial evidence – Accused and deceased last seen together – Accused making extra-judicial confession to wife of the deceased – No FIR or missing persons report lodged – Five days after the alleged incident, human skeleton, clothes of deceased on the side of the skeleton and post card bearing name and address of the deceased, found – Motive was alleged that accused was demanding back the loan given to deceased – Recovery of knife at the behest of the accused – Conviction by courts below on the basis of motive and the circumstances of the case – On appeal, held: Conviction not justified – Conviction cannot be based solely on the motive – Death of the deceased not proved in the facts of the case – Circumstances of last seen together becomes relevant only when the death is proved – Recovery of knife u/s 27 of Evidence Act is not admissible – It has no nexus with the cause of death since the prosecution case was that death was caused by hard blunt object – Identification of the deceased not established – Extra-judicial confession not worth reliance – Evidence Act, 1872 – Medical Jurisprudence. Appellant-accused alongwith another accused was prosecuted for having killed his brother-in-law. Prosecution case was that the appellant was demanding back the loan given to the deceased. The deceased was expecting some amount towards compensation from the State. The deceased, along with the appellant and PW 6 (another lender), left for collecting the amount of compensation. They were seen together by PW5. Deceased did not return back home. Two days thereafter, appellant informed the wife of the deceased (PW 3) that he had killed her husband. Neither an FIR was lodged nor a `missing of person’ report was given. Five days after the day, the deceased and the appellant were seen together, PW1 informed the police that he had seen a human skeleton in his brother’s land. Investigating Officer found a human skeleton, some clothes and a post card. He also found a big stone having some blood stains. Post card bore the name and address of the deceased. After post mortem report, FIR was lodged. Appellant and the co-accused were arrested. A knife was recovered at the behest of the appellant. Trial Court convicted the appellant, relying on the circumstances viz. (1) motive, (2) last seen together with the deceased, (3) extra judicial confession made to PW 3, (4) discovery of bloodstained clothes from the house of the accused, and (5) discovery of knife. However, the co-accused was acquitted. High Court confirmed the conviction. Hence the present appeal. =Allowing the appeal, the Court HELD: 1. The impugned judgment cannot be sustained. This case does not satisfy the tests laid down by the Supreme Court* for determination of the guilt of the accused charged for commission of murder on the basis of circumstantial evidence. [Paras 14 and 15] [272 B-D] *Sharad Birdichand Sarda vs. State of Maharashtra 1984 (4) SCC 1116; Bodhraj vs. State of Jammu and Kashmir 2002 (8) SCC 45; and State of Goa vs. Sanjay Thakran (2007) 3 SCC 755 – relied on. 2. By no norms, a dead body would be skeletalised within a period of 3-4 days. It shall in ordinary course take atleast a few weeks, as the occurrence took place in the month of December. Atleast a week’s time is necessary for a dead body to be skeletalised even during a very hot summer. The doctor who performed the post-mortem report did not spell out the possible time of death. He probably was not in a position to determine the same. He might not have even been called upon to do so by the Investigating Officer. [Paras 12 and 13] [271 G-H] [272 A-B] HWV Cox’s Medical Jurisprudence and Toxicology – referred to. 3. There is nothing on record to show that vultures or other animals ate away parts of the dead body. Had that been so, the same would have been noticed by PW-1 and his brother as well as by the Investigating Officer. At least it would have found some mention. All parts of the dead body including small intestine were missing. The dead body was lying in an open field at least for four days. How apparels and cloths purported to be belonging to the deceased had been found near the dead body separately is beyond any comprehension. If he was killed by using a hard and blunt substance on his head as it appears from the post-mortem report, portion of the clothes of the deceased would still be found over the skeleton and not at a distance from it. If the dead body was eaten away by vultures or other animals the garments would have also been found in torn condition and beyond recognition. In this situation the evidence that the garments have been recognized by the mother and wife of the deceased, for the purpose of identification of the dead body to be that of the deceased, cannot be accepted. [Para 6] [269 F-H] [270 A-B] 4. No DNA test was conducted. The Investigating Officer even could not decipher as to whether the dead body is of a male or a female. No expert was examined to establish that an identification was forensically possible. [Para 10] [270 G-H] 5. A judgment of conviction cannot be recorded only on the basis of motive. The circumstance of last seen together becomes relevant only when the death is proved to have taken place within a short time of the accused and the deceased being last seen. [Para 8] [270 C-D] State of Goa vs. Sanjay Thakran 2007 (3) SCC 755 – referred to. 6. The post card which was purported to have been recovered was not marked as an exhibit. Nobody proved the contents of the said post card. It is also difficult to believe that although the post card remained under open sky for a period of at least four days in the winter season, the same was still readable and could be found near the dead body. [Para 7] [270 B-C] 7. Extra judicial confession purported to have been made by the appellant to PW-3 also cannot be relied upon as ordinarily she would have disclosed the same to her relative and lodged a first information report immediately thereafter. [Para 9] [270 D-E] 8. Recovery of knife at the behest of the appellant also looses much significance as the prosecution case itself is that the death was caused by inflicting an injury by a hard and blunt substance. Discovery, in terms of Section 27 of the Evidence Act would have been admissible in evidence, provided the recovery was that of a fact which was relevant to connect the same with the commission of crime. Recovery of a weapon at the instance of the accused which has no nexus with the cause of death of the deceased is inadmissible in evidence. [Para 9] [270 E-G] Sudhanshu Choudhari and Naresh Kumar, for the Appellant. Sushil Karanjkar and Ravindra Keshavrao Adsure, for the Respondent. , 2007(13 )SCR264 , , 2007(14 )SCALE174 ,

CASE NO.: Appeal (crl.) 620 of 2006 PETITIONER: Keshav RESPONDENT: State of Maharashtra DATE OF JUDGMENT: 12/12/2007 BENCH: S.B. SINHA & HARJIT SINGH BEDI JUDGMENT: JUDGMENT CRIMINAL APPEAL NO. 620 OF 2006 S.B. SINHA 1. The deceased Uttam Sonwale is the brother-in-law of the appellant. His sister Sarjabai was married to the appellant. He was … Continue reading

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