Dadan Vs. State of
M.P.  INSC 1855 (4 November 2008)
IN THE SUPREME COURT
OF INDIA CRIMINAL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CRIMINAL APPEAL NO. 386 OF 2007 DADAN
... APPELLANT VERSUS
C.K. THAKKER, J.
present appeal is filed by appellant Dadan-Accused No. 2 in Sessions Trial No.
39 of 1992 being aggrieved and dissatisfied with the judgment and order of
conviction and sentence dated September 11, 1998, recorded by the Court of
Additional Sessions Judge, Satna (Madhya Pradesh) and confirmed by the High 2
Court of Judicature at Jabalpur, M.P. on April 25, 2006 in Criminal Appeal No.
2444 of 1998.
stated the facts of the case are that according to the prosecution, the
incident in question took place on December 14, 1990 at 07.05 p.m. at Kabari
Tola, District Satna in front of Pan shop of one Bablu. The case of the
prosecution was that on the fateful day, all the accused were standing near the
shop of Bablu. Jawaharlal Sahu (deceased) came there on his scooter. All the
accused persons were waiting for the deceased. They formed an unlawful assembly
whose members were armed with deadly weapons like gupti, knife, iron rods etc.
The common object of the accused persons was to kill Jawaharlal. On seeing
Jawaharlal, all the accused started inflicting injuries on him. Jawaharlal
cried for help. His brother PW 5 Motilal who was sitting at the watch shop of
Ramcharan Singh, immediately reached there to rescue him, but he was also
beaten by the accused persons and serious injuries were 3 caused to him. The
incident was witnessed by PW 7 Hiralal, father of the deceased, PW 9 Janki Bai,
mother of the deceased as also PW 10 Bharat Kumar, brother of the deceased.
Other persons also came there. The accused fled away.
Jawaharlal died due
to injuries sustained by him. Motilal was taken to hospital. First Information
Report was lodged immediately at 8.45 p.m. The accused were arrested on the
next day, i.e. December 15, 1990. They were charged for commission of offences
punishable under Sections 148, 302 read with 149 as also Section 307 read with
149, Indian Penal Code, 1860 (IPC). Usual investigation was carried out and the
case was committed to the Court of Session by the Chief Judicial Magistrate
since it was exclusively triable by the Sessions Court.
plea of the accused was recorded. They denied having committed any offence and
claimed to be tried.
the trial, the prosecution, in support of the case, examined fifteen 4
witnesses. The accused in their defence examined four witnesses.
Sessions Court on the basis of medical evidence came to the conclusion and
recorded a finding that Jawaharlal Sahu died due to injuries sustained by him
and the death was homicidal in nature. It also recorded a finding that injuries
caused to Motilal were serious in nature and they have been caused during the
course of incident in which Jawaharlal Sahu lost his life.
the part played by the accused and their responsibility, the trial Court
heavily relied upon the evidence of PW 5 Motilal, real brother and injured
witness and PW 7, Hiralal, PW 9 Janki Bai and PW 10 Bharat Kumar. On the basis
of the said evidence, it held that it was proved by the prosecution beyond
suspicion that accused persons formed an unlawful assembly and in furtherance
of common object to cause death of Jawaharlal, they inflicted injuries on him.
All the accused 5 were, therefore, liable to be convicted for offences
punishable under Sections 148, 302 read with 149, IPC. It, however, held that
it was not proved by the prosecution that the accused persons attempted to
cause death of Motilal and were, therefore, not liable to conviction under
Section 307 read with Section 149, IPC. But they had committed an offence of
causing grievous hurt to Motilal and, therefore, were liable to be convicted
for an offence punishable under Section 326 read with Section 149, IPC. The
Court in the light of the said finding, ordered the accused persons to undergo
rigorous imprisonment for one year for an offence punishable under Section 148;
to suffer imprisonment for life for the offence under Section 302 read with
Section 149 and to undergo rigorous imprisonment for three years for an offence
punishable under Section 326 read with Section 149, IPC. They were also ordered
to pay fine with default clause.
aggrieved by the order of conviction and sentence, out of five accused, four
accused (other than Kirti Singh) preferred criminal appeals. The High Court
again appreciated the evidence on record and by the judgment impugned in the
present appeal held that the appeal filed by accused No. 3-Rajesh Viswakarma @
Thapa was required to be allowed.
appeal was allowed and his conviction and sentence was set aside. With regard
to other accused, however, the court held that the trial court did not commit
any error in recording finding of guilt against them and there was no substance
in those appeals. Order of conviction and sentence, therefore, was confirmed.
Dadan who was accused No. 2 has challenged his conviction by filing the present
have heard the learned counsel for the parties.
learned counsel for the appellant contended that the order of conviction and
sentence recorded by the trial Court and confirmed by the High Court cannot be
said to be in accordance with law and it is liable to be set aside. It was also
submitted that when the High Court acquitted one of the accused not believing
the prosecution story and granted benefit of doubt to him, the said benefit
ought to have been extended to the appellant also.
When a part of the
prosecution story was not believable and was not believed by the High Court, on
the same set of facts and circumstances, it ought not to have convicted the
appellant herein. The counsel also argued that iron rod said to have been used
in commission of offence was not seized and on that ground also, the appellant
is entitled to succeed. It was urged that both the courts mainly relied upon
PWs 5, 7, 9 and 10. All the above prosecution witnesses were closely related to
the deceased being father, mother 8 and brothers. Though the incident took
place in a busy locality and other witnesses were available, independent
witnesses had not been examined and the High Court ought to have granted
benefit of doubt to the appellant.
learned counsel appearing for the State, on the other hand, supported the order
passed by the High Court. According to him, on the basis of evidence on record,
both the courts reached a finding against the appellant and there is no reason
to interfere with the impugned judgment.
heard the learned counsel for the parties and having gone through the judgments
of both the courts and relevant part of evidence of PW 5 Motilal, PW 7 Hiralal,
PW 9 Janki Bai and PW 10 Bharat Kumar, we are of the view that no error can be
said to have been committed either by the trial Court or by the High Court in
recording guilt of the appellant herein and in convicting him for the offences
with which he was charged.
Court is exercising power under Article 136 of the Constitution and is not a
regular Court of Appeal. In exercise of the said power, this Court does not
re-appreciate, review and re-weigh the evidence which has been appreciated by
the trial Court and by the High Court. If on the basis of evidence of the
aforesaid witnesses, the Sessions Court was satisfied that the prosecution
witnesses were trustworthy and relying on their testimony, conviction was
recorded and the High Court confirmed that part of the order, it cannot be said
that by doing so any illegality had been committed by the courts below. No
interference, therefore, is called for by this Court against the said finding.
The present appeal, therefore, is liable to be dismissed.
the foregoing reasons, the appeal preferred by appellant-accused No. 2 Dadan
deserves to be dismissed and is accordingly dismissed. Conviction and sentence
awarded by 10 the trial Court and confirmed by the High Court are maintained.
(D. K. JAIN)