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Ragghu v. State - CRIMINAL APPEAL No. - 2159 of 1982 [2007] RD-AH 16612 (11 October 2007)

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HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE AT ALLAHABAD

Reserved

Criminal Appeal No. 2159 of 1982

Ragghu........................................................................Accused

Appellant

Versus

State of U.P..................................................................Respondent

Hon'ble M. Chaudhary, J.

Hon'ble R.N. Misra, J.

(Delivered by Hon'ble M. Chaudhary, J.)

This is a criminal appeal filed on behalf of the accused appellant from judgment and order dated 30th of July, 1982 passed by Sessions Judge Hamirpur in Sessions Trial No.212 of 1981 State Vs Ragghu convicting the accused under section 302 IPC and sentencing him to imprisonment for life thereunder.

Brief facts giving rise to this appeal as unfolded during the trial in brief are that in the morning of 13th of May, 1981 Tutia was sitting on a wood lying in front of his house. At that time Jagrani, mother of Tutia and his uncle Murlidhar were sitting in front of their house talking together. At that time Ram Sahai was sitting near the house of Balaiyo at a distance of 15-20 paces from Tutia. At about breakfast time Ragghu taking an axe came out of his house and gave axe blows to Tutia hitting him on his neck. Immediately Mulridhar, Jagrani and Ram Sahai rushed for his rescue. By that time after making murderous assault Ragghu fled away with the axe. Sustaining the fatal injuries Tutia died on the spot instantaneously. Then Murlidhar, uncle of the deceased got report of the occurrence scribed by Birbal and went to police station Jalalpur situate at a distance of 11 kms from village Neoli Vasa and handed over written report of the occurrence to the police there at 12:45 p.m. the same noon mentioning therein that about a month ago some quarrel had taken place between him and Tutia on one hand and Ragghu on the other over construction of the house by the latter extending on the way. The police registered a crime against the accused accordingly under section 302 IPC and started the investigation.

Station officer Ram Shiromani Gautam took up investigation of the crime in his hands and went to the scene of occurrence. He drew inquest on the dead body of Tutia and handed over the dead body in a sealed cover alongwith necessary papers to Constable Shiv Narain and the village Chawkidar for being taken for its post mortem. Then he recorded statements of the witnesses. After inspecting the site he prepared site plan map of the place of occurrence. He took up bloodstained and simple earth from the place of occurrence and sealed them in separate packets and prepared their memo.

Autopsy on the dead body of Tutia conducted by Dr V.P. Agrawal, medical officer ESI Kanpur on 14th of May, 1981 at 10:15 a.m. revealed belownoted ante mortem injuries:

1. An incised wound 14 cm x 1.5 cm x bone deep on right side neck just below right side mandible directed horizontally with sharp margins. Trachea, oesophagus, right side neck vessels and 5th cervical vertebra cut.

2. An incised wound 14 cm x 1.5 cm x bone deep on right side back of head just below occipital prominence directed horizontally, occipital bone cut.

3. An incised wound 7 cm x 2 cm x muscle deep on left side neck 2.5 cm below left lobule of ear obliquely directed.

On internal examination brain and its membrane were found congested. Brain was also soft and pulpy. Both the lungs were slightly congested and oesophagus was also found cut. Stomach was empty, small intestine was partly full with gases and large intestine partly full with faecal matter.

The doctor opined that the death was caused due to shock and Hemorrhage as a result of ante mortem injuries about one day ago.

Then he searched for accused Ragghu but in vain. The investigating officer went to the place of occurrence on 16th of May, 1981 and took up bloodstained strip of the wood on which Tutia was sitting at the time of assault and prepared its memo.

The investigating officer got bloodstained and simple earth collected from the scene of occurrence, bloodstained clothes of the deceased and bloodstained strip of the wood sent to forensic Science Laboratory Agra for serologist's opinion.

After framing of charge against the accused the prosecution examined Murlidhar ( PW 1), Prakash Rani (PW 2) and Ram Sahay (PW 3) as eye witnesses of the occurrence. PW 4 Constable Moharir Shiv Shanker Singh who prepared check report on the basis of written report handed over to him at the police station and made entry regarding registration of the crime in GD proved these papers ( Ext ka 2 & ka 3).

PW 6 Dr V.P. Agrawal who conducted autopsy on the dead body of Tutia proved the post mortem report deposing that the ante mortem injuries sustained by the deceased were sufficient to cause death in ordinary course of nature. PW 5 Station officer Ram Shiromani Gautam who investigated the crime and after completing investigation submitted charge sheet against the accused proved the police papers.

The accused pleaded not guilty denying the alleged occurrence altogether and stating that he was implicated in the case falsely on account of enmity.

On a conspectus of evidence on the record the prosecution case commended itself to the learned trial judge and he convicted and sentenced the accused appellant as stated above.

Feeling aggrieved by the impugned judgment and order the accused appellant preferred this appeal for redress.

Heard Sri I.K. Chaturvedi, learned Amicus Curiae for the accused appellant and Sri M.A. Siddiqui, learned AGA for the State respondent.

After going through the impugned judgment and record of the case we find no good reason to interfere with the findings recorded by the learned trial judge against the accused appellant. PW 1 Murlidhar, uncle of the deceased and the first informant stated all the facts of the occurrence from beginning to the end as stated above deposing that at about breakfast time the alleged morning he was talking with Jagrani, mother of Tutia sitting at the door of Tutia's house; that Tutia was sitting on a log lying across the pathway in front of his house at a distance of ten paces from the door of his house and Prakash Rani, wife of Tutia was brooming at the door of the house that Ragghu came out of his house taking an axe and gave three axe blows to Tutia hitting him at his neck and fled away and that immediately they alongwith Ram Sahay who was talking to some persons near Balaiya's house chased Ragghu but he succeeded in making his escape good threatening them with the axe. He further disposed that sustaining the axe blows Tutia fell down and died on the spot instantaneously. PW 2 Prakash Rani, wife of the deceased and PW 3 Ram Sahay who resided in neighbourhood also corroborated him deposing likewise. All the three witnesses were subjected to gruelling and rambling cross-examination but nothing tangible could be elicited therefrom to shake their credibility. Since the incident took place in the morning and at the time of occurrence there were no crops in the fields as crops had already been harvested, presence of PW 1 Murlidhar, PW 2 Prakash Rani and that of PW 3 Ram Sahay whose house is situate in vicinity of the place of occurrence can not be doubted. Testimony of the three eye witnesses stands well corroborated by FIR of the occurrence lodged at the police station without losing any time and medical evidence. Medical evidence leaves no room for doubt as to the factum of the occurrence, and the prosecution case with regard to its time and weapon used in the assault also receives corroboration from it. The place of occurrence is also fixed up by recovery of blood and bloodstained strip of wood by the investigating officer therefrom. PW 1 Murlidhar, uncle of the deceased and Jagrani, mother of the deceased were sitting in front of their house as stated by PW 3 Ram Sahay who was talking to some persons near the house of Balaiyo situate at a distance of some 15-20 paces from the place where Tutia was sitting on a wood . PW 2 Prakash Rani and PW 3 Ram Sahay had no animus against the accused appellant. All the three eye witnesses withstood their cross-examination firmly. We have no reason to disbelieve the testimony of the three eye witnesses examined by the prosecution. However, the appellant's learned counsel has advanced following arguments assailing judgment of the trial Court and now we shall see if any of them has got any substance in it:

First, the appellant's learned counsel vehemently argued that since there is no mention of crime number, name of the accused etc. in the inquest report and other papers relating thereto it leads to the conclusion that the FIR was not in existence at the time of inquest on the dead body of Tutia and hence the FIR is ante timed. In the Court's opinion the said argument is devoid of any force. A perusal of the inquest report goes to show that time of lodging FIR at the police station, name of the first informant, weapon with which murder was committed , distance of police station from the place of occurrence etc. have been mentioned in the relevant columns therein and a list of the documents annexed with the inquest report mentions copy of the FIR among the papers sent therewith. It is true that normally crime number is mentioned at the top of the inquest report so that the papers may not get mixed up with other papers but there is no column in the inquest report as such that crime number, name of the accused etc. should be mentioned therein. A perusal of the inquest report goes to show that inquest proceedings were started at 3:00 p.m. and concluded at 4:00 p.m. A perusal of police proforma no. 13 commonly known as challan lash goes to show that the police headquarter was situate at a distance of 13 kms from the place of occurrence. A perusal of the post mortem report goes to show that autopsy on the dead body was conducted on 14th of May, 1981 at 10:15 a.m. Considering all the facts we are of the view that if the crime number and name of the accused have not been mentioned on the top of the inquest report and other papers relating thereto the same is not fatal to the prosecution case and FIR can not be said to be ante timed on the basis thereof.

Secondly, the appellant's learned counsel contended that the occurrence took place at some dark hour in the night and none witnessed the murder and in the morning FIR was lodged after consultation at the police station. In support of the said contention argument of the appellant's learned counsel is twofold: (i) a perusal of the post mortem report goes to show that large intestine was full of faecal matter and (ii) the two major incised wounds each measuring 14 cm x 1.5 cm x bone deep were on right side of neck and head which go to show that the assault was made on Tutia while he was asleep. The said argument advanced by the appellant's learned counsel has got no substance in it for the following reasons: (i) a perusal of the post mortem report goes to show that stomach was empty, small intestine was partly full of gases and the large intestine was partly full. No doubt, PW 2 Prakash Rani, wife of the deceased stated in her cross-examination that Tutia had gone to pass faeces early in the morning. That may be correct but possibility can not be ruled out that he had gone to pass faeces but might not have excreted due to constipation etc.,(ii) a perusal of the post mortem report goes to show that Tutia received three ante mortem incised wounds including an incised wound 7 cm x 2 cm x muscle deep on left side neck 2.5 cm below left lobule. Moreover all the three eye witnesses consistently deposed that after sunrise in the morning when Tutia was sitting on a wood in front of his house Ragghu gave axe blows to him on his neck from behind and that thereon they raised hue and cry and also chased Ragghu but he fled away threatening them with the axe in his hand and (iii) the investigating officer got bloodstained and simple earth collected from the scene of occurrence and bloodstained strip from the wood on which Tutia was sitting and bloodstained undergarments put on by Tutia sent to the Forensic Science Laboratory Agra for serologist's opinion. A perusal of the serologist's report goes to show that bloodstained earth and bloodstained undergarments of the deceased contained human blood. Bloodstained vest put on by the deceased contained human blood of group ''B'. However bloodstains on safi and strip of wood were disintegrated. Blood group of blood in the bloodstained earth could not be determined. Thus recovery of bloodstained earth from the place where the wood was lying ( point ''A' in the site plan map Ext ka 9) lent assurance to the fact that occurrence took place at the place where Tutia was sitting on the wood at the time of occurrence.

Thirdly, the appellant's learned counsel laid much emphasis upon the fact that since it has been admitted by PW 1 Murlidhar and PW 2 Prakash Rani that prior to the murder of Tutia construction was completed by Ragghu no motive was left for making murderous assault at Tutia by the accused appellant. In our view, the said argument advanced by the appellant's learned counsel deserve outright rejection as it is well established that in the case of direct evidence motive pales into insignificance.

In view of the foregoing discussion, we find ourselves in agreement with the findings recorded by the learned trial judge against the accused. The appeal has no merit and is liable to be dismissed.

The appeal is hereby dismissed, and the impugned judgment and order convicting accused appellant Ragghu under section 302 IPC and sentencing him to imprisonment for life thereunder is affirmed. He is in jail. He shall serve out the sentence imposed upon him.

Sri I.K. Chaturvedi who argued the appeal on behalf of the appellant as Amicus Curiae shall be paid Rs.2000. 00 as fee.

Office is directed to send copy of the judgment and record of lower court to the court below immediately for ensuring compliance under intimation to this Court within two months from today.

Dated: 11th of October, 2007

Crl Appeal No.2159 of 1982


Copyright

Reproduced in accordance with s52(q) of the Copyright Act 1957 (India) from judis.nic.in, indiacode.nic.in and other Indian High Court Websites

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