Prasad Singh Vs. Raj Kumar @ Pappu & Ors  Insc 193 (4 April 2001)
Shah & S.N. Variava Shah, J.
virtually a matter of shame to the civilization that indiscriminate attacks and
violence are directed against married women in certain quarters including
so-called educated for obnoxious and anti-social demand of dowry and the
accused are let off for various reasons.
is violence against women continues unabated as law looses its deterrent
effect. In some cases, flee bite sentence till rising of the Court or sentence
already undergone is awarded without verifying whether the accused has
undergone any sentence.
prosecution case in nutshell is thaton 1.4.1994 at 11 a.m. Bilasa Devi and Neelam,
mother in law and sister in law respectively of Kusum Kumari started beating
complainants daughter with a burning wooden stick and she remained lying for
some time at in-laws house. Thereafter, the mother-in-law again said burn her
face, on which Kusum got scared and ran away from the place and reached the
house of her Bua (fathers sister) at about 4 p.m. From there, message was sent to her parents house. Thereafter her
father-PW1 reached Kanpur and gave a written complaint at the
Police Station through his son. After appreciating the entire evidence, by
judgment and order dated 12.11.1999, 1st Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate, Kanpur
City convicted respondents for the offence punishable under Section 498A of the
IPC each and sentenced them to suffer RI for one year and to pay a fine of
Rs.1000/-, in default in payment of fine to further undergo RI for 3 months
each, by holding that accused persons asked Kusum to bring money from her
fathers house and when she could not arrange for money, all the accused
mercilessly beat and planned to burn her with a burning wooden stick.
that order, accused preferred Criminal Appeal No.96 of 1999 which was heard by
the 7th Additional Sessions Judge, Kanpur City, who after appreciating the entire
evidence dismissed the appeal filed by the present respondents but allowed the
appeal of Smt. Neelam and set aside her conviction order. That order was
challenged by the respondents by filing Criminal Revision No.1548 of 2000 in
the High Court of Allahabad.
Revision Application was heard by Mr. B.K. Rathi, J., who by cryptic order
allowed the revision by holding as under: - Applicant no.1 is the husband and
applicants no.2 and 3 are father-in-law and mother-in-law. The learned counsel
for the applicants has not challenged the conviction and has argued only on the
question of sentence.
circumstances, by maintaining the conviction for the offence under Section
498-A IPC, I modify the sentence and they are sentenced to undergo RI for the
period for which they had been in jail and a fine of Rs.1000/- each.
shall be released forthwith on deposit of fine.
order is under challenge. It has been submitted by the learned counsel that the
order passed by the High Court is nothing but a mockery of justice. Without
appreciating any evidence and recording any reasons, the High Court modified
the sentence only on the ground that the learned counsel for the respondents
has not challenged the conviction and has argued only on the question of
view, there is much substance in the contention raised by the learned counsel
for the appellant. It is apparent that the High Court has modified the sentence
without recording any reasons and without considering the crime prevalent in
the society for unjustified demand of dowry. In any case, before exercising its
revisional jurisdiction, the Court ought to have considered the facts and
applied its mind as to whether it was a fit case for exercise of its revisional
jurisdiction and for reducing the sentence. It has also been pointed out that
without verifying the fact that respondents have not undergone any sentence,
the Court has passed the order of reducing the sentence for the period for
which they had been in jail.
Court has reiterated in a series of cases that it is the duty of the Court to
pass appropriate order of sentence and not raising of any argument by counsel
for the accused for acquittal is hardly any ground for reduction of sentence.
result, the appeal is allowed and the impugned order passed by the High Court
is set aside. The High Court to decide the revision application afresh on