Pal Singh Vs. State of Punjab  INSC 1064 (3 September 1996)
S.P. (J) Kurdukar S.P. (J) Mukherjee M.K. (J) S.P.Kurdukar. J.
JT 1996 (7) 647 1996 SCALE (6)318
appellant accused was employed as a driver in the Pepsu Roadways Transport
Corporation. The appellant alongwith Jagdip Singh, Ranjit Singh, Daljit Singh, Sukhminder
Singh and Anokh Singh conspired to cause the death of Sh. A.P.Pandey, the then
Senior Superintendent of Police, Ludhiana. In pursuance of the said conspiracy
on 9th July, 1985, at about 2.00 p.m., the appellant alongwith four others mentioned
hereinabove attempted to commit the murder of Shri A.P.Pandey by driving and
dashing Truck No. PNP-3477 against the staff car No. PAM-33.
is allowed by the prosecution that Shri Pandey was sitting on the back seat of
the staff car whereas his gunman Head Constable Bakshish Singh (PW 3) was
sitting on the front side by the side driver Shri Hari Chand (PW 1). When the
car of Shri Pandey, was about to crosss Chowk Bharat Nagar, Ludhiana, the gunman noticed one person
driving the Scooter and proceeding in front of the staff car. The scooterist
took a turn towards Major
Gurdial Singh Road
after giving signal where a Fiat Car was parked stationary on the road facing
towards Ghumar Mandi
Road, Ludhiana. When the staff car proceeded
towards Mall Road and reached Red Cross Bhawan, the driver Hari Chand (PW 1)
noticed a Truck bearing No. PNP-3477 that was parked on one side of the Mall Road facing the opposite direction with
its engine on(running). When the staff car was about to pass in front of the
said truck, the appellant drove the Truck and intentionally dashed against the
left side of the staff car as a result of which the left portion thereof was
impact of the truck was so powerful that the staff car struck against the
concrete portion of the Mall
Road and as a result
thereof right side wheel of the staff car broke down and detached from the body
of the car. As a result of this accident, Shri Pandey, his gunman and the
driver sustained minor injuries and abrasions. The appellant thereafter
abandoned the truck and started running towards Major Gurdial Singh Road where the Scooter and Fiat Car were
parked. However, the appellant was apprehended by the escort party of Mr.A.P.Pandey
which was then following the staff car. The Scooter and Fiat Car however
disappeared. In the meantime, wireless message was sent to the police station
whereupon the inspector reached the place of accident and commenced the
investigation. The statement of the driver Shri Hari Chand (PW 1) was recorded
and on the basis thereof a formal FIR come to be registered. After completing
the necessary investigation, a charge sheet against the appellant came to be
filed in the Designated Court for offences punishable under Section 30%
427,323/120B, 143 and 149 of the [PC and under Section 4(3) of the Terrorist
and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act, 1985.
accused denied the charge and claimed to be tried.
to the appellant, he is a resident of Bassi Pathana and on the date of
occurrence, he had brought his ailing father to Ludhiana for medical care and left him in Gurdwara near Jagraon bridge.
He further pleaded that he was a new comer to Ludhiana city. He admitted that he had parked his Truck towards the
wrong side. After noticing a flag car coming at a high speed, he was frightened
as he was on the wrong side of the road and became panicky. At the relevant
time, a rickshaw carrying the women and children was proceeding on the said
road and in order to avoid a collision with the said rickshaw, he took a turn
and as a result thereof, his Truck dashed against the staff car of Shri A.P.Pandey
. He had no intention whatsoever to dash against the staff car of Shri A.P.Pandey
and it was an error of judgment while saving the occupants in the auto
gainfully employed at the relevant time and he had no track record of any
terrorist activities. He is neither a terrorist nor there was any conspiracy as
alleged by the prosecution. The allegations levelled against him are false.
innocent and be acquitted.
support of its case, the prosecution mainly relied upon the evidence of the
driver Hari Chand (PW 1), Shri A.P.Pandey, SSP (PW 2), Head Constable Ram Kishan
(PW $) and other formal witnesses including various panchnamas and the injury
certificates issued by the Medical Officer.
Designated Court, Ludhiana, on appraisal of oral and documentary evidence on
record by its judgment and order dated December 1, 1986 convicted the appellant
under Section 307 and 427 IPC and sentenced him to suffer RI for five years and
one year respectively and to payment of fine, to undergo further RI for year.
The appellant was also convicted under section 4(3) of the Terrorist and
Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act, 1985, and sentenced to suffer RI for
five years and to pay a fine, to undergo RI for one year. It is this order of
conviction and sentence passed by the Designated Court, Ludhiana which is sought to be challenged by
the appellant in this appeal.
Madhu Moolchandani, the learned counsel appearing in support of this appeal
urged that the prosecution must fail for want of evidence of independent
to the learned counsel, Hari Chand (PW 1), Shri A.P.Pandey (PW 2), Head
Constable Ram Kishan (PW 4) and Bakshish Singh (PW 3) were highly interested
witnesses inasmuch as they were from the police constabulary which was under
control of Shri A.P.Pandey (PW @0, the then Senior Superintendent of police, Ludhiana.
The incident alleged to have taken place in the noon time on a busy road and
many persons were said to have seen the accident in question. In this view of
the matter, it was the duty of the prosecution to examine some independent
witnesses to corroborate the ocular evidence of the eye witnesses. She also
urged that in order to save the lives of the occupants in the auto rickshaw, he
was required to take suddenly a turn and as a result thereof, his Truck dashed
against the staff car. If the appellant had a motive to commit the murder of Shri
A.P.Pandey, it was very easy for him crush the staff car completely. The
appellant applied the brakes of the Truck urgently but could not succeed in
halting the Truck to save the accident. Learned Counsel further urged that the Designated Court has wrongly applied the provisions
of Section 4(3) of the Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act,
1985. There was no material before the Court to rope in the appellant under the
said Act. She, urged that the appellant is innocent. It is pure and simple
accident and the appellant be acquitted.
have carefully gone though the oral and documentary evidence on record. We have
also perused the impugned judgment. In our opinion, there is no substance in
any of these contentions raised on behalf of the appellant.
evidence of Hari Chand (PW 1), the driver of the staff car and the evidence of Bakshish
Singh, the gunman (PW 3) unmistakably indicate that the appellant had purposed
parked his Truck on the wrong side with the engine on and was waiting for the
staff car of Shri A.P.Pandey to pass along the place of occurrence. Their
evidence further shows that when the staff car was about to cross the Red Cross
Bhawan, the appellant who was on wait in the Truck with the engine on suddenly
moved in the direction of the staff car and dashed against the said car. The
very impact itself would indicate that it was motivated one. The staff car was
completely smashed on the left side. The wheel of the right side of the staff
car was also broken down and detached from the body of the said vehicle. It was
sheer providence that Shri A.P.Pandey sustained minor injuries only. The
evidence of Ram Kishan, HC(PW 4) who was sitting in the escort vehicle also
corroborates the evidence of the Hari Chand (PW 1), Bakshish Singh (PW 3) and Shri
A.P.Pandey (PW 2). There is no substance in the contention that the prosecution
ought to have examined an independent witness. The evidence of the above four
eye witnesses suffers from no infirmity whatsoever and we do not see any reason
to discard the same.
addition to the above ocular evidence of the eye witnesses, we have also
evidence of Pritam Singh (PW 5), the photographer who took photographs of the
truck and the damaged car and his evidence also supports the manner in which
the incident took place. Zulfi Ram (PW 6), the motor mechanic also deposed that
the left side of the staff car was completely damaged.
medical evidence on the record also indicates that Hari Chand (PW 1) and Bakshish
Singh (PW 3) sustained injuries in the said accident. Shri A.P.Pandey (PW 2)
also sustained injuries(abrasions).
After going through the evidence on record, we are satisfied that it was a
planned action on the part of the appellant to commit the murder of Shri A.P.Pandey,
the then Senior Superintendent of police, Ludhiana, with a view to create a
terror in the public at large. The very accident speaks for itself. The
impugned judgment in our considered view suffers from no illegality. The appeal,
is therefore, devoid of any merit.
the result, the appeal fails and the same is dismissed. The appellant, who is
on bail, shall surrender to his bailbonds forthwith to serve out the remaining
period of his sentence.