Saraswathi Vs. The State of Andhra Pradesh
& Others  Insc 95 (18 February 2003)
Variava & Arun Kumar Variava, J.
appeal is against the judgment dated 8th October, 1993.
stated the facts are as follows:
case of the prosecution was that on 21st September, 1991, 10 persons (who were arraigned as
accused before the trial Court), formed an unlawful assembly and committed
murder of one Pamula Narayan. It is the case of the prosecution that they
committed theft of Rs.8,000/- from the person of the deceased and also attacked
and caused injuries to the wife of the deceased and committed theft of
ear-studs of the wife of the deceased. The 10 accused were therefore charged
for offences under Section 148, 324, 326, 379 and 302 IPC. Unfortunately no
charge was framed either under Section 34 or 149 IPC.
only eye-witness account was that wife of the deceased. She was examined as
PW.1. She deposes that Accused No.1 (who is Respondent No.1 here) hacked the
deceased on the left side of the fore-head and below the left knee-joint. She
deposes that Accused No.2 (who is Respondent No.3 here) hacked the deceased on
the right side fore-head and on right shoulder.
deposes that Accused No.6 (who is Respondent No.4 herein) hacked the deceased
on the head and left side of the fore-head. She deposes that Accused No.3 hit
the deceased with an axe on the right side ribs. Thus she attributes overt acts
to each of these four persons. She specifies the injuries caused by each one of
who conducted the post-mortem was examined as PW.10.
post-mortem report shows the following injuries:
Incised injury 2x1/2x1/2 inches over left parietal region.
Incised injury 1/2x1/4x1/4 inches over right side of fore
Skin contusion red, 1x1/4" over left side of the forehead.
Skin contusion 1x1 inches over left shoulder,
skin contusions red in colour each 2"x1" over lumbar vertebra.
Skin contusion 1x1 inches over posterior border of left axilla.
Skin contusion 1x1 inches over middle 1/3rd of posterior aspect of left arm red
Multiple small abrasions over lower 1/3rd of right side of chest.
Abrasion 1/2" long just below posterior aspect of right elbow.
Skin contusion 1/2 x 1/2 inches red in colour over lateral aspect of lower
1/3rd of right fore arm.
Laceration 1/2 x1/4 inches x 1/2 inches over posterior aspect of left elbow.
Skin contusion, red 1/2x1/2 inches over posterior aspect of left elbow.
Skin contusion red in colour 1/2 x 1/2 inches over lateral aspect of upper
1/3rd of left thigh.
Three skin contusions red in colour each 1/2x1/2 inches over laterial aspect of
Abrasion 3" long over upper 1/3rd of on front of right thigh.
Skin contusion 1x1 inch red over right knee
Skin contusion red 2x2 inches over lateral aspect of lower part of right side
Skin contusion red 1x1 inches with multiple small abrasions over posterior part
of middle 1/3rd of right side of chest.
appearances:- 12th rib is fractured over right side with injury to IVC. (inferior
Vena Cava). Blood clots and blood are found in abdominal cavity volume about 3 litres.
Stomach is empty. Other internal organs like heart, lungs, liver, spleen,
kidneys and intestines are normal. Brain is normal." The Doctor opined
that the death was due to acute haemorrhage and shock due to injury to the
inferior vena cava. The Doctor does not depose, and there is no evidence, that
any of the other injuries and particularly injuries No.1 and 2 were such that
in the normal course would have resulted in death. As noted above in the
opinion of the Doctor death was a result of the blow to the rib of the
deceased. That blow, according to the deposition of PW.1, was given by Accused
trial Court acquitted all except A-1, A-2 and A-6, (i.e., three Respondents
before this Court). We have read the judgment of the trial Court. The trial
Court has believed the evidence of PW.1 i.e. the eye- witness. We cannot fanthom
how A-3 was still acquitted by the trial Court.
also find that the trial Court has convicted these three Respondents under
Section 302 simplicitor i.e. without the aid of Section 34 or 149 IPC.
trial Court also convicted them under Sections 324 and 379 IPC also.
State filed no appeal against the acquittal of the other accused persons. The
Appellant also did not file any Appeal. The Respondents (herein) filed an
Appeal against their conviction. The High Court also believed the evidence of
PW.1. The High Court then held as follows:
of the injuries found are on non-vital parts of the deceased and they are
simple. As such we find that they cannot be said to have intended to cause the
death or would have had the knowledge that the injuries caused by them would
result in thedeath of the deceased. We, therefore, find the appellants guilty
of offence under Sec.324 IPC." The High Court then set aside the
conviction under Section 302 but maintained sentence under Section 324 and
sentenced them for a period of two years. The High Court also maintained the
sentence under Section 379 and sentenced them for a period of two years.
State has not filed any Appeal. However, the Appellants have come to this Court
against the judgment of the High Court. As noted above, the overt act, which
resulted in death, was attributed to Accused No.3. He has been acquitted. No
Appeal was filed against that acquittal. This Court, cannot, at this stage
interfere with that acquittal. The Respondents (herein) were not charged under
Section 302 read with Section 34 or Section 149 IPC. The High Court was thus
right in setting aside their conviction under Section 302 IPC. The High Court
is obviously referring to injuries other than the one on the rib when it states
that they are on non-vital parts. By terming the other injuries as simple the
High Court is obviously meaning that they are not grievous as defined in
Section 320 IPC. Also the High Court has obviously kept in mind the fact that
there is no evidence on record that any of the other injuries were such as
would, in the ordinary course, have resulted in death. Thus, we see no reason
to interfere with the conviction. However, in our view, this is a fit case
where the High Court should have imposed fine upon the Respondents and should
have invoked the provision of Section 357 of the Code of Criminal Procedure. It
is proved that Respondents were responsible for theft of Rs.8,000/- and ear
studs of PW.1. PW.1 has also lost her husband who was the main earning member.
Therefore, over and above the sentence imposed by the High Court, we also
impose fine on each of the Respondents in a sum of Rs.10,000/- (ten thousand)
each. In default of payment of fine they shall undergo a further period of one
year each. In case the fine or any part thereof is recovered, the same shall be
paid over to PW.1 The Appeal stands disposed off accordingly.