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JIWAN LAL versus THE STATE OF PUNJAB

High Court of Punjab and Haryana, Chandigarh

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Jiwan Lal v. THE STATE OF PUNJAB - CRA-D-251-DB-2003 [2006] RD-P&H 2179 (31 March 2006)

IN THE HIGH COURT OF PUNJAB AND HARYANA AT CHANDIGARH.

DATE OF DECISION:- 21.4.2006

Jiwan Lal ...APPELLANT

VERSUS

THE STATE OF PUNJAB ...RESPONDENT

(2) CRA NO.396-DB OF 2003

Ashok Kumar ...APPELLANT

VERSUS

THE STATE OF PUNJAB ...RESPONDENT

(3) CRA NO.451-DB OF 2003

Taranjit Singh ...APPELLANT

VERSUS

THE STATE OF PUNJAB ...RESPONDENT

CORAM:- HON'BLE MR.JUSTICE MEHTAB S.GILL
HON'BLE MR.JUSTICE T.P.S.MANN

PRESENT:-Mr.R.S.Ghai, Senior Advocate with Mr.Vinod Ghai and Mr.Mandeep Kaushik, Advocates for the appellant in CRA No.251-DB of 2003.

Mr.V.K.Jindal and Mr.Vipul Jindal, Advocates for the appellant in CRA No.396-DB of 2003.

Mr.Vinod Ghai and Mr.Mandeep Kaushik, Advocates for the appellant in CRA No.451-DB of 2003.

Mr.S.S.Randhawa, Senior Deputy Advocate General, Punjab.

MEHTAB S.GILL, J.

Criminal Appeal Nos.251-DB of 2003, 396-DB of 2003 and 451-DB of 2003 have been filed against the same judgment/order. We shall be deciding all the appeals by a common judgment.

Additional Sessions Judge (Adhoc) Patiala convicted Jiwan Lal, Ashok Kumar and Taranjit Singh for offence under Sections 302/34 IPC and sentenced them to undergo life imprisonment and to pay a fine of Rs.2000/- each respectively. In default of payment of fine, to undergo further RI for two months each.

The case of the prosecution is unfolded by the statement Ex.PW10/A of Sanjiv Kumar. Sanjiv Kumar stated that he has one brother and two sisters. His sister Gita Rani was married with Jiwan Lal son of Sham Lal about five years back. Out of this wedlock, two daughters were born. Jiwan Lal had another brother by the name of Tarsem Lal. Both the brothers lived jointly. Tarsem Lal was unmarried. Both of them were running Readymade Garments shop. Sanjiv Kumar's brother-in-law Jiwan Lal had a doubt that his wife Gita Rani had illicit relations with his brother Tarsem Lal. Due to this reason, both husband and wife used to quarrel with each other. Jiwan Lal used to beat Gita Rani. Gita Rani narrated this occurrence to her brothers and sister. Sanjiv Kumar visited the house of his brother-in-law Jiwan Lal and tried to pacify him. On 13.8.1999 Sanjiv Kumar received a telephonic message from his brother-in-law Jiwan Lal at about noon, that he should take away Gita Rani, otherwise she would be killed by him. Sanjiv Kumar along with Kewal Krishan son of Farangi Lal left for Patiala, when they reached near Pasiana bridge of Bhakhra canal at about 4.30 P.M. he saw his sister Gita Rani and his brother-in-law Jiwan Lal along with his brother Tarsem Lal and his friend Tejinder Singh alias Happy and Ashok Kumar resident of Purani Kotwali Chowk Bhidian Wali Street, standing on one side and were quarreling with each other. A Fiat Car of white colour bearing No.PJV/30 was parked nearby. As soon as Sanjiv Kumar tried to stop the scooter to see them, all of them got surprised on seeing Sanjiv Kumar. Jiwan Lal then told his friends Happy and Ashok to put Tarsem Lal and Gita Rani in the car and thereafter they fled away. They went towards Samana. Sanjiv Kumar and Kewal Krishan chased them for some distance but could not catch them and they came back to Sherpur to get more persons. Thereafter Sanjiv Kumar came back to his house and told the occurrence to his family members. Thereafter he along with some other persons went to the house of his brother-in-law Jiwan Lal and saw his house locked. He along with others searched for Gita Rani and Tarsem Lal, but in vain. Sanjiv Kumar had suspicion that his brother-in-law Jiwan Lal had kidnapped his sister Gita Rani and her Devar Tarsem Lal, with the help of his friend Tejinder Singh alias Happy and Ashok Kumar, with the intention to kill them. This statement was recorded by Sukhchain Singh SI/SHO Police Station Sadar, Patiala. On the basis of this statement, FIR Ex.PA was recorded. Special report reached the ACJM Patiala on 15.8.1999 at 2 P.M.

Prosecution to prove its case has brought into the witness box Dr.O.P.Aggarwal as PW1, Mohd. Sadiq as PW2, Ayub Masih as PW3, Indresh Khanna as PW4, Sanjiv Kumar as PW5, CII Devinder Singh as PW6, Bhag Singh as PW7, MHC Kuldeep Singh as PW8, HC Tej Singh as PW9, Harminder Singh as PW10, C.Kulwant Singh as PW11, Jagrup Singh as PW12, Harinder Pal Singh as PW13, Kewal Krishan Goel as PW14, Vijay Kumar as PW15, Krishan Chand as PW16, DSP Gurchain Singh as PW17, Inspector Uttam Singh as PW18 and K.S.Sullar, JMIC, Anandpur Sahib as PW19.

Learned counsel for the appellants has argued that the testimony of both Sanjiv Kumar PW5 and Kewal Krishan Goel PW14 qua the last seen evidence cannot be believed. They have stated that they left village Sherpur on 13.8.1999. When they reached near village Pasiana at the bridge of Bhakhra canal, they saw that appellants Jiwan Lal, Ashok Kumar and Taranjit Singh were standing there. Deceased Tarsem Lal and Gita Rani were also standing next to them and were grappling with the appellants. Appellants on seeing Sanjiv Kumar PW5 and Kewal Krishan Goel PW14 pushed Tarsem Lal and Gita Rani into a Fiat Car No.PJV-30 and drove away. It has come in the evidence of Sanjiv Kumar PW5 that he along with Kewal Krishan Goel PW14 were going to the house of Jiwan Lal from where a telephonic message had come for him to take his sister Gita Rani away or she would be killed. It is strange that when both these witnesses saw that the appellants were grappling with Tarsem Lal and Gita Rani, their natural behaviour should have been, to go to the police station to inform the police about the occurrence, which had taken place in front of them, on the bridge of Bhakhra canal. Instead Sanjiv Kumar PW5, the brother of deceased Gita Rani kept quiet for three days i.e. on 13.8.1999, 14.8.1999 and it is on 15.8.1999 at 8.25 A.M. that he lodged the FIR Ex.PW10/A at Police Station Sadar Patiala, about the missing of his sister Gita Rani and her brother-in-law Tarsem Lal. The Investigating Officer SI Gurchain Singh PW17, has stated in his testimony that the bridge of Bhakhra Canal at village Pasiana is a very busy place. There is a police post there. There are Dhabas and Rehris also on the side of the bridge. Both these witnesses did not shout for help when both Tarsem Lal and Gita Rani were being pushed into the Fiat car. In fact these two witnesses have been implanted. It was incumbent upon the Investigating Officer to investigate the matter regarding the rape being committed on deceased Gita Rani. It has come in the report of FSL Ex.PZ and Ex.PY that semen was found on the swabs taken from the vagina. To pin down the guilt of the appellants, the Investigating Agency should have gone in for a DNA test. The recovery of the car from Nizamudeen in New Delhi and recovery of kirch Ex.P13, clothes Ex.P14 and Ex.P15 and knife Ex.P19 and the driving licence purportedly to be of Taranjit Singh is all fabrication done by the Investigating Officer.

Learned counsel for the appellants has lastly argued that material questions regarding kidnapping, motive and extra judicial confession have not been put to the accused in their statements under Section 313 Cr.PC.

Learned counsel for the State has argued that the last seen evidence that of Sanjiv Kumar PW5 and Kewan Krishan Goel PW14, is not that they reached the bridge of Bhakhra canal by chance, but it was after appellant Jiwan Lal, who was no other person than the brother-in-law of Sanjiv Kumar PW5 gave a telephonic message on 13.8.1999, in which he threatened to eliminate Gita Rani or she should be taken away. It was in consequence of this threat that Sanjiv Kumar PW5 along with Kewal Krishan Goel PW14 started from village Sherpur to reach Patiala. It was on the way at the bridge of Bhakhra canal that they saw Gita Rani and Tarsem Lal being maltreated and thereafter being pushed into a Fiat car and then being taken away to the side of Samana Town. Body of deceased Tarsem Lal was recovered from about 6 Kms. from the bridge on the Samana road.

Sanjiv Kumar PW5 did not inform the police, as he thought that the dispute being between his brother-in-law and his sister, would be pacified by taking his sister back to village Sherpur. He at that moment did not realize, that appellants were going to murder both Gita Rani and Tarsem Lal, who was no other person than real brother of appellant Jiwan Lal.

Dr.O.P.Aggarwal PW1, who prepared the Post Mortem Report Ex.PA, in his testimony before the Court has stated that the death of Tarsem Lal had taken place 14 hours earlier and that of Gita Rani 36 to 48 hours earlier. FIR Ex.PW10/A was recorded on 15.8.1999 at 8.25 A.M. and if we go back to 36 to 48 hours, it is clear that the occurrence had taken place in the evening of 13.8.1999. Krishan Chand DW1 has stated that on 13.8.1999 in the evening, he went to the shop of appellant Jiwan Lal where he bought a shirt and pant. He has stated that appellant Jiwan Lal was in his shop at the time of the alleged occurrence. If appellant Jiwan Lal was in his shop after closing of the shop, he must have gone home and then would have seen that his wife Gita Rani and his brother Tarsem Lal were not present. In fact Tarsem Lal worked in the same shop with Jiwan Lal. For three days appellant Jiwan Lal kept quiet, though he saw that his wife Gita Rani and his brother Tarsem Lal were missing. The conduct of appellant Jiwan Lal was unnatural. If he was not involved in the commission of the offence, he would be the first person to go and inform the police. Blood stained earth was recovered from the place from where the dead body of Tarsem Lal was recovered. The driving licence of appellant Taranjit Singh was also recovered from there. It has come in the statement of the Investigating Officer that the driving licence was recovered lying next to the body of deceased Tarsem Lal. It has also been mentioned in the inquest report Ex.PW17/C in column No.22 regarding recovery of the driving licence of Taranjit Singh. The fiat car No.PJV/30 was recovered on the basis of the disclosure statement made by appellant Ashok Kumar.

The medical evidence shows that Gita Rani before being brutally murdered was raped and assaulted on her private parts. This was done to teach her a lesson, for having illicit relations with Tarsem Lal.

We have heard the learned counsel for the parties and perused the record with their assistance.

Sanjiv Kumar in FIR Ex.PW10/A and in his testimony before the Court as PW5 has stated, that his sister Gita Rani was married to Jiwan Lal. Jiwan Lal had a suspicion that his real brother Tarsem Lal, who was unmarried, was having illicit relations with her. Due to this, there was friction in the house. Jiwan Lal beat up Gita Rani. On 13.8.1999 he received a telephonic message from Jiwan Lal threatening him, to either take Gita Rani away or otherwise she would be killed. On receiving the message, he along with Kewal Krishan Goel PW14 left for Patiala on a scooter. Near Pasiana at the bridge of Bhakhra canal at about 4.30 P.M. he saw the appellants and Tarsem Lal and Gita Rani standing there. Appellants were grappling with Tarsem Lal and Gita Rani. On seeing them, appellants pushed Tarsem Lal and Gita Rani into a Fiat Car No.PJV/30 and drove away to the side of Samana Town. Sanjiv Kumar PW5 along with Kewal Krishan Goel PW14 chased them on the scooter, but were not successful in catching them. Sanjiv Kumar PW5 narrated this incident to his father and other relatives and Sarpanch Rakesh Kumar. Sanjiv Kumar PW5 along with Sarpanch Rakesh Kumar and some relatives then came to Patiala and searched for Gita Rani and Tarsem Lal in various places. Not finding them, they went back to Sherpur. On 15.8.1999 FIR Ex.PW10/A was registered.

On the same day, SI Gurchain Singh PW17 started investigating the case and he was informed by an Ex-Sarpanch, that a body was lying in the bushes, in the fields belonging to one Dhanwant Singh. Sanjiv Kumar PW5 along with the police party went there and found that it was the body of Tarsem Lal. It had been eaten by animals and only the stomach area could be recovered. Body was taken into possession vide memo Ex.PJ. There were knife injuries on the neck of the deceased. Blood stained earth was recovered. One driving licence of appellant Taranjit Singh was also recovered from the place of occurrence, which was taken into possession vide recovery memo Ex.PL. Sarpanch Rakesh Kumar signed on the recovery memo. Recovery of licence of appellant Taranjit Singh is also mentioned in the inquest report Ex.PW17/C, wherein in column No.22 it is mentioned that a parcel of blood stained earth was prepared. The driving licence of Taranjit Singh recovered has also been shown. Learned counsel for the appellants has vehemently argued that there are shops, Rehris and Dhabas near Pasiana at the bridge of Bhakhra canal. A specific question to this effect was put to Sanjiv Kumar PW5, who stated, that there were a number of shops, Dhabas and Rehris near the bridge of Bhakhra canal.

Statement of this witness was recorded on 5.10.2002 after a gap of three years of the occurrence. In his statement he has stated that at the time of occurrence, shops, Dhabas and Rehris were not present. This witness also clarified that inadvertently due to over sight in FIR Ex.PW10/A he has recorded the name of Taranjit Singh as Tajinder Singh. Sanjiv Kumar PW5 along with Kewal Krishan Goel PW14 and Sarpanch Rakesh Kumar and other relatives went to the house of the in-laws of his sister, but he could not locate any one there as the house was locked. Sanjiv Kumar PW5 for two days tried to find out Gita Rani and Tarsem Lal, but it is ultimately when he could not locate his sister that he lodged the FIR Ex.PW10/A at Police Station, Sadar Patiala. Kewal Krishan Goel PW14 in his testimony before the Court has stated that he accompanied Sanjiv Kumar PW5 on 13.8.1999.

He also saw the occurrence and reiterated it in the same manner as Sanjiv Kumar PW5 stated. Kewal Krishan PW14 has further stated that on 15.8.1999 he along with one Ashok Kumar were joined by the police in the investigation of the case. When they reached near the limits of village Sangrera, near the bridge minor, they saw the dead body of Gita Rani lying.

Body was taken into possession vide recovery memo Ex.PW14/A. He identified the dead body as he knew Gita Rani. This witness has categorically stated that at the time of occurrence there was no police post at Pasiana on the bridge of Bhakhra canal.

We cannot be oblivious of the fact that deceased Gita Rani is no other person than the wife of Jiwan Lal and Tarsem Lal is no other person than the real brother of Jiwan Lal. Both appellant Jiwan Lal and deceased Tarsem Lal had a joint Garments shop which they were running jointly. They lived in the same house. Deceased Tarsem Lal was a bachelor.

The motive for the commission of the offence is very strong qua appellant Jiwan Lal, as he was suspicion that his wife Gita Rani and Tarsem Lal had illicit relations. He had made it clear to Sanjiv Kumar PW5 on the telephone, that if he did not take Gita Rani his sister away, she would be killed. Unfortunately before Sanjiv Kumar PW5 could take his sister, appellant Jiwan Lal along with co-accused Ashok Kumar and Taranjit Singh extinguished the lives of both Tarsem Lal and Gita Rani. DW1 Krishan Chand has stated in his testimony on oath, that he is a Municipal Commissioner. On 13.8.1999 at about 4 p.m. he went to the shop of Jiwan Lal to purchase clothes. Jiwan Lal was present in his shop. Krishan Chand DW1 remained in his shop till 4.30 P.M. He bought a shirt and pant.

Thereafter as he did not like the colour of the shirt and pant, he came back to his shop at 7.30 P.M. Jiwan Lal was present at his shop. Krishan Chand DW1 remained there till 8 P.M. Going through the statement of Krishan Chand DW1 it is clear that appellant Jiwan Lal was present in his shop on the evening of 13.8.1999. He went back to his house. It is strange that appellant Jiwan Lal inspite of knowing on 13.8.1999, 14.8.1999 and 15.8.1999 that his wife Gita Rani and his brother Tarsem Lal were missing, he did not make any effort to either inform the police or to the neighbours, or tried to inquire as to where they had gone. The motive for the commission of offence is very strong. Sanjiv Kumar PW5 would not implicate his own brother-in-law falsely for the murder of his sister and let the actual culprits go scot free.

Dr.O.P.Aggarwal PW1, who performed the post mortem examination on the dead body of both Tarsem Lal and Gita Rani on 15.8.1999 at 4.15 P.M. found two incised wounds on the neck of Tarsem Lal deceased and five stab wounds along with four incised wounds on the body of deceased Gita Rani. Apart from these wounds on the body of the deceased Gita Rani, matting of pubic hair with thick white material mixed with blood was present on the private parts. There were multiple abrasions present around the vagina and inner parts of thighs. Four vaginal swabs were taken from the different parts of the vagina and were sent to the Chemical Examiner. As per report of FSL Ex.PZ and Ex.PY, semen was present on the swabs. It is clear from the medical evidence that deceased Gita Rani before being brutally murdered, was raped savagely by the appellants, to teach her a lesson for having illicit relations with Tarsem Lal.

As per Dr.O.P.Aggarwal PW1, death of both Tarsem Lal and Gita Rani took place within 36 to 48 hours before the post mortem was conducted. The medical evidence conclusively proves that the occurrence had taken place on the evening of 13.8.1999. This corroborates the statements of Sanjiv Kumar PW5 and Kewal Krishan Goel PW14. The driving licence of appellant Taranjit Singh was recovered from the place where thedead body of deceased Tarsem Lal was lying. Fiat car No.PJV/30 was recovered on the basis of disclosure statement made by appellant Ashok Kumar.

As per the observations made above, we are of the considered opinion that the appellants have committed the murder of Tarsem Lal and Gita Rani. Appeals of appellants Jiwan Lal, Ashok Kumar and Taranjit Singh are dismissed.

Learned counsel for the appellants has argued that material questions were not put to the appellants in their statements under Section 313 Cr.PC. We have gone through the questions put to the appellants.

Taking all the questions in totality, all the incriminating piece of evidence available to the prosecution have been put to the appellants whose answers they have given. The sentence imposed upon appellant Jiwan Lal, is that it shall run consecutively on both the counts of the murder of Tarsem Lal and Gita Rani. We are inclined to modify the sentence of appellant Jiwan Lal from that to run consecutively to run concurrently on both the counts of sentence under Section 302 IPC for the murder of Tarsem Lal and Gita Rani. Apart from above modification in the sentence of appellant Jiwan Lal, we do not find any infirmity in the impugned judgment of the trial Court. Appeals dismissed.

If the appellants are on bail, they are directed to surrender before the C.J.M.,Patiala, to undergo the remaining part of the sentence.

(MEHTAB S.GILL)

JUDGE

( T.P.S.MANN )

JUDGE

April 21,2006

AS

Whether to be referred to reporter? Yes/No


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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