Ramjit & Ors. Vs.
State of U.P.  INSC 43 (12 January 2009)
IN THE SUPREME COURT
OF INDIA CRIMINAL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CRIMINAL APPEAL NO. 40 OF 2009
(Arising out of SLP (Crl.) No.5671 of 2008) Ramjit and Ors. .........Appellants
Versus State of U.P. ........
Dr. ARIJIT PASAYAT,
1. Leave granted.
2. A Division Bench
of the Allahabad High Court dismissed the appeal filed by the appellants who
were convicted for offences punishable under Section 302 read with Section 149
and Section 307 read with Section 149 and Section 148 of the Indian Penal Code,
1860 (in short the `IPC').
3. In all five
persons had filed the appeal. During pendency of the appeal before the High
Court appellant accused Mangaru died and the appeal stood abated so far as he
is concerned. The learned 3rd Additional Sessions Judge, Azamgarh, had found
the five accused persons guilty in S.T. No.78 of 1982. The present appeal has
been filed by four of the accused persons who were A2, A3, A4 and A5 before the
version in a nutshell is as follows:
resulting in the death of Sukhai and causing injuries to Sabhajit and Laljit
occurred on 26.12.1981 in Village Larpur Saheb Ali situated within the limits
of P.S. Didarganj, District Azamgarh. First 2
Information Report was lodged on 26.12.1981 by Ramjit S/o Sukhai Yadav R/o
Village Larpur Saheb Ali. The case of prosecution as appearing from the F.I.R.
in brief is that the chak of the complainant Ramjit was situated in northern
side near to the house of Mangaru S/o Munne Lal Yadav. On 26.12.1981 Sabhajit,
brother of the complainant, along with one Dhodhai (PW-2) was harrowing his
wheat field. At about 4.30 p.m. the bull of the accused Mangaru entered into
another field of the complainant and started grazing and damaging the wheat
crop. Sabhajit seeing the bull grazing and damaging his wheat crop, called
Ramjit son of Mangaru and asked him to take out his bull. Sabhajit complained
also to Ramjit that their cattle always trespass in his field and damage the
grown standing crop. Thereupon, Ramjit hurling abuses to Sabhajit went inside
his house and immediately thereafter the accused Mangaru and Rajdev having
lathies in their hands and Ram Bachan, Ram Achal and Ramjit armed with knife,
bhala and gandasi respectively came there and they all began to assault
Sabhajit. When on hearing hue and cry, the complainant Ramjit, his father
Sukhai and brother Laljit rushed to save Sabhajit, the accused persons
assaulted Sukhai and Laljit also. Behind the complainant, his cousin Indrajit,
witnesses Sabhajit S/o Bahadur Yadav and Sita S/o Madhar Yadav of his village
and Ram Narayan Singh S/o Hub Raj Singh of village Larpur Jhokhu as well as his
maternal uncle Sudarshan of village Gilwara also reached there. On being
challenged by these persons, the accused went away after causing injuries to
Sabhajit, Laljit and Sukhai. The complainant Ramjit witnessed the incident
standing at some distance. Sukhai having sustained serious injuries fell down
in the field and died instantaneously. Sabhajit and Laljit also sustained serious
injuries due to which they were carried to Government Hospital, Phulpur for
treatment. The complainant with the help of Banarsi, Jeetu, Adhin and Keesa
carried the dead body of his father to P.S.
Deedarganj and handed
over written report there which was scribed by Abhai Raj (P.W.4).
On the basis of
written report the then Head Moharir, Bal Govind Tiwari prepared chik F.I.R.
and registered a case on 26.12.1981 at 6.30 p.m.
under Sections 147,
148, 149, 323, 324, 307, 302 I.P.C. at Crime No.106/1981 against Mangaru,
Ramjit, Ram Achal, Ram Bachan and Rajdev and made entry in G.D. vide Ext.Ka-3.
proceeding on the dead body of Sukhai was conducted on 27.12.1981 by S.I. Lat
Buksh Singh (PW-5) who prepared inquest report and connected papers. Thereafter,
the dead body in sealed condition was 4
sent through the constable Ram Ugrah Pandit for post mortem examination which
was conducted on 28.12.1981 at 2.00 p.m. by Dr. S.N. Sinha (PW-7) who prepared
post mortem report. Various injuries were found on the person of the deceased.
Investigation of the case was entrusted to S.I. Lat Buksh Singh (PW-5) who
recorded the statement of the witnesses and after making spot inspection at the
instance of the complainant Ramjit prepared site plan. Blood stained and sample
earth were collected from two places in the field of occurrence and one knife
was also recovered from the place where the dead body of the Sukhai was stated
to be lying in the field and fard Ext.Ka.8 and KA-9 were prepared in this
regard. Thereafter, blood stained lathi, gandasi and bhala were recovered from
the well of accused Mangaru at the instance of witnesses and fard was prepared.
After completion of
investigation charge sheet was filed. Since the accused persons pleaded
innocence trial was held. Nine witnesses were examined to further the
prosecution version. Sabhajit Yadav (PW-1) and Laljit (PW-3) were injured
witnesses. Similarly, Dhodhai (PW-2) was also an eye witness. Placing reliance
on the evidence of the eye witnesses the trial Court recorded the conviction as
5 In appeal, the
primary stand was that occurrence took place in a sudden quarrel and,
therefore, Section 302 has no application. It was pointed out that there was
exchange of hot words and there was sudden quarrel because the bullocks damaged
The High Court did
not find any substance in the plea of the appellants and upheld the conviction.
5. Learned counsel
for the appellants reiterated the stand taken before the High Court. Learned
counsel for the respondent-State on the other hand supported the judgment of
the Trial Court as affirmed by the High court.
6. It is submitted by
learned counsel for the State that this cannot be stated to be a case of sudden
quarrel because the accused persons after the quarrel went inside and came back
with arms. In the instant case though the witnesses stated that after initial
exchange of hot words and quarrel the accused persons went inside and came
back, it is to be noted that they have fairly accepted that while the exchange
of hot words, quarrel was continuing and immediately i.e. in less than two and
three minutes they came back.
7. That being so, in
the peculiar facts of the case we are of the considered view that appropriate
conviction would be under Section 304 Part I read with Section 149 IPC. The
conviction is accordingly altered.
The other convictions
remain unaltered. Custodial sentence of 10 years in respect of offence
punishable under Section 304 Part I IPC would suffice.
The sentences in
respect of other offences remain unaltered. All the sentences shall run
8. The appeal is
allowed to the aforesaid extent.
(Dr. ARIJIT PASAYAT)