Amichand Govadia & Ors Vs. State of Maharashtra and Anr  Insc 651 (13 October 2006)
Pasayat & Lokeshwar Singh Panta
out of SLP (Crl.) NO. 731 OF 2006) ARIJIT PASAYAT, J.
call in question legality of the judgment rendered by a learned Single Judge of
the Bombay High Court dismissing the Criminal Writ Petition no. 1770/2004 filed
under Article 227 of the Constitution of India, 1950 (in short the
facts in a nutshell are as follows:
are facing trial for alleged commission of offences punishable under Sections
306, 498A read with Section 34 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 (in short the
case of the prosecution is that Sharmila, daughter of the complainant was
married to appellant no.3 and appellant nos.
and 4 are her father-in-law, brother-in-law and mother- in-law respectively.
The Sessions Case No. 3791 of 2003 is pending trial in the Court of IV
Additional Sessions Judge, Thane. An application was filed before the Trial
Court by the complainant through the prosecuting counsel for producing the
death certificate dated 10.4.2004 indicating cause of death as certified by Dr.
R.M. Dhotre. The accused persons opposed acceptance of the document as evidence
on the ground that along with police papers a certificate of death, dated
18.5.2000 by Dr. R.M. Dhotre, was filed which stated the probable cause of
death to be cardio respiratory failure due to acute respiratory failure. In the
subsequent certificate a different cause of death was indicated. That being so,
it was submitted that the subsequent certificate should not be taken on record.
Trial Court held that the production of the certificate dated 10.4.2004 cannot
be decided at that stage as prosecution has not explained as to how the
certificate was sought to be brought on record after 4 years. Therefore, the
matter relating to production of the certificate was kept in abeyance to be
decided after examination of Dr. R.M. Dhotre.
same date another application was filed for adding charge under Section 304B
IPC. The trial Court accepted this prayer which was affirmed by the High Court.
Same is the subject matter of challenge in this appeal.
submitted that the trial Court having already decided in the connected
application that the question of accepting the subsequent document would be
taken up after the examination of doctor, should not have altered the charge
primarily based on the same document.
response, learned counsel for the respondent-State submitted that the charge
can be altered at any time and there is nothing wrong in the order passed by
the Trial Court. It is submitted that since charge can be altered at any stage,
no prejudice has been caused to the accused.
is no quarrel with the proposition that the charge can be altered at any stage.
But the question is whether in view of the order passed on the same date the
order relating to alteration of charge has been passed by the Trial Court. It
is to be noted that the Trial Court itself noted that as per the first
certificate the cause of death was cardio respiratory failure due to acute
respiratory failure. It, however, noted that some chemicals were noted in the
viscera. The effect of the presence of those chemicals has necessarily to be
considered in the background of both the subsequent certificates, in case the
latter certificate is taken on record. That being so, it would be proper for
the Trial Court to defer the question of framing charge under Section 304B after
examination of Dr. R.M. Dhotre and relevance of the subsequent certificate and
its acceptability. The High Court has failed to consider the relevant aspects
and, should not have dismissed the application. The impugned order is set
appeal is allowed.