High Court of Punjab and Haryana, Chandigarh
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State of Haryana v. Daleep Khan & Ors - CRM-273-MA-2006  RD-P&H 554 (18 January 2007)
IN THE HIGH COURT OF PUNJAB AND HARYANA AT CHANDIGARH
Crl.M.No.273-MA of 2006
Date of decision: 23.1.2007
State of Haryana
Daleep Khan and others
CORAM: HON'BLE MR. JUSTICE ADARSH KUMAR GOEL
HON'BLE MR. JUSTICE H.S.BHALLA
Present: Mr. JS Toor, Addl.A.G.Haryana, for the applicant.
This petition for leave to appeal has been filed to challenge acquittal of the respondents of the charge under sections 498A/406/342/304B/201/34 IPC.
Case of the prosecution is that Phul Kumari was married to Daldeep son of Sube Singh on 8.3.1998. She was treated with cruelty and on 10.6.2001, the accused compelled her to consume phenyol to cause her death and thereafter her dead body was disposed of.
FIR was recorded on the statement of Karambir son of Munshi Ram PW-2, brother of Phul Kumari on 13.6.2001, to the effect that Phul Kumari was married to Daldeep accused on 8.3.1998 and for the initial period of five-six months, there was no grievance. Thereafter, she went to Bareli where her father-in-law was in the Army. He received a telephonic message from his sister that she was being harassed for dowry. About one year ago, he alongwith his mother, uncle and brother went to Bareli to see his sister and she again complained of harassment for dowry. Thereafter, she delivered a male child. Accused Mandeep gave a telephonic call to the complainant and made a demand for dowry. The complainant party gave a sum of Rs.82000/- alongwith other items. Two-three months back, again demand for purchasing a plot was made. On 10.6.2001, a telephonic call was made to Bareli which was attended by the sister-in-law of Phul Kumari Crl.M.No.273-MA of 2006 2
who disclosed that Phul Kumari alongwith Daldeep and his mother had left for Village Bohar. Complainant side went to the house of Bala wife of Kailash, sister-in-law of Phul Kumari where he met Daldeep, his mother and son of Phul Kumari, who disclosed that Phul Kumari had alighted on the way. In fact, she had been kept concealed and killed for insufficient dowry.
During investigation, statement of PW-4 Satyawan was also recorded to the effect that Mandeep had made extra judicial confession that Phul Kumari had died by consuming phenyol and they had disposed of her dead body.
After investigation, the accused were challaned and prosecution led its evidence.
The accused denied the prosecution allegations and stated that they never demanded dowry and that Daldeep had joined military service in 1991 and remained under training in Pune from 1996 to 1998 and then at Jammu and Kashmir from 1998 to 2000 and from January 2001, he was at Ferozepur. His wife was living at Village Mohammedpur Majra and at Bohar with her parents. Later on, she eloped with her paramour.
After considering the evidence on record, the trial court acquitted the accused persons, inter-alia, for the following reasons:- (i)There were discrepancies in the testimony of Karambir, PW2 and Panna Lal PW3 with regard to their visit to Bareli.
There were also discrepancies about the version about disappearance of Phul Kumari.
(ii)Confessional statement of Mandeep to PW4 Satyawan, Ex- Municipal Councillor that the accused admitted that Phul Kumari died by consuming phenyol and her dead body was disposed of, was unreliable as the said version was never mentioned by Karambir PW2 in his testimony, though according to PW4 Satyawan, he had informed PW2 Karambir about the extra judicial confession.
We have heard learned counsel for the State and perused the Crl.M.No.273-MA of 2006 3
findings recorded by the trial court.
Learned counsel for the State has not been able to show that the findings recorded by the trial court are unreasonable or perverse. Death of Phul Kumari has not been shown, in any manner, to be proved by any cogent evidence. Only evidence of Satyawan PW4 about extra judicial confession has been found to be unreliable for valid reasons. Thus, even if two views are possible, no interference is called for with the order of acquittal of the respondents.
Scope of appeal against acquittal has been gone into by the Hon'ble Supreme Court, inter-alia, in Jaswant Singh v. State of Haryana, AIR 2000 SC 1833, wherein it was observed:- "21. The principle to be followed by appellate courts considering an appeal against an order of acquittal is to interfere only when there are compelling and substantial reasons for doing so. If the order is clearly unreasonable it is a compelling reason for interference (see Shivaji Sahabrao Bobade v. State of Maharashtra, (1973 2 SCC 793: AIR 1973 SC 2622: (1973 Cri LJ 1783)). The principle was elucidated in Ramesh Babulal Doshi v. State of Gujarat, (1996) 9 SCC 225: 1996 AIR SCW 2438: AIR 1996 SC 2035 (1996 Cri LJ 2867): "While sitting in judgment over an acquittal the appellate court is first required to seek an answer to the question whether the findings of the trial court are palpably wrong, manifestly erroneous or demonstrably unsustainable. If the appellate court answers the above question in the negative the order of acquittal is not to be disturbed. Conversely, if the appellate court holds, for reasons to be recorded, that the order of acquittal cannot at all be sustained in view of any of the above infirmities it can then and then only reappraise the evidence to arrive at its own conclusions."
In view of above, we do not find any ground to grant leave to appeal.
The petition is dismissed.
(Adarsh Kumar Goel)
January 23, 2007 Judge
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