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Ravi v. State rep. by - Crl.A. No. 206 of 2000  RD-TN 578 (11 August 2005)
IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE AT MADRAS
THE HON'BLE MR JUSTICE N.DHINAKAR
THE HON'BLE MR JUSTICE M.CHOCKALINGAM Crl.A. No. 206 of 2000
Ravi ... Appellant -Vs-
State rep. by
Inspector of Police,
Idapadi Police Station,
Edapadi, Salem. ... Respondent Prayer: Appeal against the judgment passed by the learned Principal District Sessions Judge, Salem, in S.C.No. 59 of 1999 dated : 23.1 2.1999. For Appellant : Mr.V.Parthiban for
For Respondent : Mr.V.M.R.Rajendran
Addl. Public Prosecutor.
(Judgment of the Court was delivered by M.CHOCKALINGAM,J) This appeal has been brought forth by the sole accused, who stood tried and found guilty as per the charge of murder, by the Court of Sessions, Salem, in S.C.No.59 of 1999.
2. The short facts necessary for the disposal of this appeal can be stated thus:-
i.P.W.1 is the mother of the deceased. The appellant/accused is the husband of the deceased. P.W.2 is their son aged about 8 years at the time of occurrence. P.W.1 had two daughters. The second daughter was given in marriage to the appellant/accused herein. The deceased was employed as a permanent worker in Idapadi Municipality, while the appellant/accused was a daily wage earner in that Municipality. P.W.1 was living with her daughter, the deceased, during the relevant time.
ii.One day prior to the date of occurrence, i.e., on 16.4.1998, a quarrel arose between the spouses, since the appellant was insisting for a separate residence and later, all of them went for sleeping. P.W.1 was lying out the house. On 17.4.1998 at about 4.30 a.m., the deceased went to attend calls of nature and later, came back to the house. At that time, P.W.1 heard the distressed cries of her daughter inside the house. When she looked inside, she found the accused sitting on the chest of his wife and cutting her neck with M.O.1 knife. This was also witnessed by P.W.2. P.W.3, the neighbour of the spouses, on hearing the distressed cries of the deceased, went to her house and saw the appellant running from the house with a blood-stained knife in his hand.
iii.On seeing the death of her daughter, P.W.1 rushed to Idapadi Police Station at 6.00 a.m., where P.W.9, the Sub Inspector of Police, was on duty at that time. She gave a complaint under Ex.P-1 to P.W.9, on the strength of which, a case came to be registered in Crime No.41 4 of 1998 under Section 302 IPC. The express first information report under Ex.P-14 was sent to Court. iv.P.W.10, the Inspector of Police, Magudanchavadi Police Station, took up investigation in the case. He proceeded to the scene of occurrence, made an inspection in the presence of two witnesses and prepared an observation mahazar under Ex.P-1 and drew a rough sketch under Ex.P-15. He conducted inquest over the dead body in the presence of witnesses and Panchayatdars and prepared the inquest report under Ex.P-16. He recovered M.O.5, blood-stained earth and M.O.6, sample earth, under a Ex.P-3 mahazar. Thereafter, he sent the dead body along with a requisition to the doctor for conducting autopsy. v.On receipt of the requisition, P.W.6, Assistant Surgeon attached to Government Hospital, Idapadi, Salem, conducted autopsy on the dead body of Saraswathy and found the following injuries:-
"An incised wound in the front of the neck from left to right below larynx with 10 cm x 3 cm to bone depth. Wound lapse in the right side. Trachea is cut, open. Neck muscles and neck blood vessels incised. Lower cervical vertebra exposed."
The doctor has issued the post-mortem certificate under Ex.P-7, wherein he has opined that the deceased died out of shock and haemorrhage. vi.During investigation, the investigating officer arrested the appellant/accused on 17.4.1998 at 4.30 p.m. He volunteered to give a confessional statement, which was recorded in the presence of two witnesses. The admissible part is marked under Ex.P-4, pursuant to which, the accused produced M.O.1, knife, which was recovered in the presence of the same witnesses under Ex.P-5 mahazar. Thereafter, the accused was sent to Court for remand.
vii.Further investigation was taken up by P.W.11, the Inspector of Police, Idapadi Police Station, on 3.5.1998. All the material objects recovered from the place of occurrence, from the dead body, and M.O.1, knife, recovered from the accused pursuant to his confession statement were all subjected to chemical analysis by the Forensic Department with a requisition by the concerned Judicial Magistrate, as a result of which, Ex.P-10, the report of the Chemical Analyst, and Ex.P-11, the report of the Serologist, were received by the Court. The investigating officer questioned the doctor and P.W.6 on 7.6.1998 and after the completion of investigation, the final report was filed against the accused/appellant on the same day.
3. The case was committed to the Court of Session. Necessary charges were framed against the appellant/accused by the trial Court and in order to substantiate the charges levelled against him, the prosecution marched 11 witnesses and relied on 16 exhibits and 12 material objects. On the completion of evidence on the side of the prosecution, the accused was questioned under Section 313 of the Cr.P.C. as to the incriminating circumstances found in the evidence of the witnesses. He flatly denied them as false. No defence witness was examined. On hearing both sides and on the scrutiny of the materials available, the trial Court found the accused/appellant guilty as per the charge and awarded life imprisonment, which is the subject matter of challenge in this appeal before this Court.
4. The learned counsel appearing for the appellant inter alia would submit that the prosecution has not proved the case beyond reasonable doubt. According to the prosecution, P.W.1 is the mother of the deceased and P.W.2, who was aged about 8 years at the time of occurrence, is the son of the accused/appellant and deceased, The occurrence has taken place at 4.30 a.m. on 17.04.1998 and at that time, she was lying out side the house. At 4.30 a.m., she saw the deceased coming out of the house to attend calls of nature and went back to her house. Immediately thereafter, P.W.1 heard the distressed cries of her daughter and when she entered the house, she saw the accused/ appellant sitting over the chest of her daughter and cutting the neck with a knife. According to her, the occurrence was also witnessed by P.W.2. The learned counsel would submit that since P.W.2 was aged about 8 years at the time of occurrence, the tr ial Court ought to have rejected the evidence of P.W.2. Apart from that, since P.Ws.1 and 2 are close relatives of the deceased, much credence should not be placed on their evidence at all. Added further the learned Counsel that P.W.3 could not have seen the accused/appellant running from the place of occurrence, since it was dark. According to P.W.3, who is the neighbour, at about 4.30 a.m., on hearing the distress cries from the house of the deceased, he went towards the house of the deceased and saw the accused/appellant running from the house with a blood-stained knife in his house. The learned counsel would further add that even assuming that the prosecution has proved its case that it was the accused/appellant, who stabbed his wife, the act of the accused/appellant would not come within the ambit of murder, since there was a quarrel preceding the occurrence and in such circumstances, due to the preceding quarrel between the parties and due to sudden provocation, the accused has committed the murder of the deceased and hence, he has to be given the benefit of any of the Exceptions to Section 300 IPC.
5. The Court heard the learned Additional Public Prosecutor appearing for the State on the above contentions.
6. It is not in controversy that the wife of the appellant/accused met with instantaneous death in the place of occurrence and following the inquest conducted by the investigating officer, the body was subjected to post-mortem and the doctor P.W.6, who conducted post-mortem and who issued the post-mortem certificate under Ex.P-7, has opined that the deceased died out of shock and haemorrhage about 6 to 8 hours prior to autopsy. Apart from that, the fact that the deceased died out of homicidal violence was also not disputed by the accused/ appellant either before the trial Court or before this Court. Hence, it could safely be concluded that the deceased died out of homicidal violence.
7. In order to establish that it was the accused/appellant, who committed the crime, the prosecution has placed reliance on three witnesses, viz., P.Ws.1 to 3. It is true that P.W.1 was the mother and P. W.2 was the son of the deceased. But from the evidence of P.W.1, it is not disputed that during the relevant time and in particular, the relevant date, P.W.1 was staying along with both the deceased and the accused/appellant. There is no reason or circumstance brought forth to reject her evidence. Apart from that, the lower Court has also clearly decided the maturity of the child as acceptable and has rightly accepted the evidence given by the said witness also. It is pertinent to point out that P.W.2 is not only the child of the deceased, but also the child of the accused and no reason is brought forth to suspect the said evidence. Apart from that, P.W.3, the neighbour, has categorically deposed that on hearing the distressed cries of the deceased, he immediately went towards the house of the accused/appellant and saw the accused running from the house with a blood-stained knife in his hand. According to him, the occurrence has taken place at 4.30 a.m. and in the house of the accused/appellant. It is also not disputed that the accused/appellant was staying with his wife on the date of occurrence, in particular, during the relevant time and hence, he has to explain as to how his wife was murdered, which he failed to adduce before the lower Court. But he would simply said that he had no knowledge. It has to be pointed out that a case has been registered within a short time from the time of occurrence, i.e., at 6.00 a.m. and immediately thereafter, investigation was proceeded with. In the instant case, the medical evidence fully corroborates the ocular testimony. Under such circumstances, th e Court is of the considered opinion that the lower Court was perfectly correct in taking the view that it was the accused, who committed the murder of his wife.
8. Now, coming to the nature of the act committed by the accused/ appellant, the Court has to necessarily reject the contention put forth by the learned counsel for the appellant. In the instant case, it is true, from the evidence available, that there was a quarrel between the spouses, due to the insistence of the appellant to have a separate residence. The said quarrel had taken place in the evening hours on the previous day. But the occurrence has taken place at 4.30 a.m. on the next day and the Court is unable to notice any quarrel immediately preceding or any circumstance, which provoked the accused/ appellant to commit such a heinous crime of cutting the neck of his wife. In such circumstances, the Court is of the considered opinion that the act of the accused/appellant cannot be brought under any of the exceptions to Section 300 IPC., but would fall within the ambit of murder only and hence, the lower was perfectly right in finding the accused/appellant guilty for the offence of murder and awarded life imprisonment. This Court is unable to notice any reason to interfere in the judgment of the Court below.
9. In the result, the appeal fails and the same is dismissed. It is reported that the accused/appellant is on bail. The learned Sessions Judge shall take steps to commit the accused/appellant to prison to serve the remaining period of sentence.
1.The Principal Sessions Judge, Salem.
2.The Inspector of Police, Idapadi Police Station, Salem. 3.The Superintendent, Central Prison, Salem.
4.The District Collector, Salem.
5.The Director General of Police, Madras.
6.The Public Prosecutor, High Court, Madras.
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