Central Bureau of
Investigation Vs Kishore Singh & others
Markandey Katju, J.
should be done to policemen who `bobbitt' a person in a police station and
think that they can get away with it? That is the question to be decided in
appeals by special leave have been filed against the impugned judgment and
order dated 19.11.2008 passed in D.B. Criminal Appeal No. 235/2006, SB Criminal
Appeal No. 31/2006& SB Criminal Appeal No. 70/2006 of Rajasthan High Court
case reveals how some policemen in our country have not got over their old
colonial mentality and are still persisting in barbaric acts in a free country
which claims to be run by a democratic Constitution and the rule of law. It
also reveals a grisly state of affairs prevailing in our police set up even
Mr. J.S. Atri, learned senior counsel appearing for the appellant, CBI, Mr.
KTS Tulsi, learned senior counsel for respondent constable Kishore Singh, Mr.
Rakesh Dwivedi, learned senior counsel for respondent Assistant Sub-Inspector
Sumer Danand Ms. Aishwarya Bhati, learned counsel appearing for respondent
S.H.O. Sohan Singh.
prosecution case is that one Jugta Ram, the injured witness in this case, was
an employee of one Bheru Singh and was working in his liquor shop. Jugta Ram
also lived in the house of Bheru Singh in one room of the upper floor, while
the family of Bheru Singh was living in the ground floor. Bheru Singh had two sons
and three daughters. Jugta Ram is said to have had an affair with Bheru Singh's
wife and eldest daughter. This was suspected by Bheru Singh, whose relative was
accused constable KishoreSingh.
2.2.1994, at about 8 P.M. Jugta Ram was carrying a bottle of liquor when
accused constable Kishore Singh met him and snatched the liquor bottle and in
the course of the scuffle the bottle fell down and got broken. Kishore Singh
then took Jugta Ram to the Sadar police station where the accused SHO Sohan
Singh and some policemen were also present. Sohan Singh allegedly assaulted
Jugta Ram and at that time Bheru Singh also came to the police station. Accused
Kishore Singh, constable, is the son of Bheru Singh's brother-in-law (sala).
Ram was taken to the police station on 2.2.1994 and kept locked up there till
5.2.1994. He was beaten up in the police lockup by Bheru Singh, constable
Kishore Singh and A.S.I. Sumer Dan. On 4.2.1994 at about 2 or 3 P.M., Jugta
Ram's brother Kheraj Ram came to the police station and he stated that the policemen
demanded Rs. 40-50 thousand otherwise Jugta Ram will not be released.
5.2.1994, Jugta Ram was again assaulted by Bheru Singh,Sumer Dan and Kishore
Singh who kept asking about his illicit relationship and then he stated that he
had illicit relationship with Gaj Kanwar, wife of Bheru Singh At this, Bheru
Singh and Sumer Dan caught hold of Jugta Ram. Accused A.S.I. Sumer Danheld
Jugta Ram by the neck and put his hand on his mouth and then accused constable
Kishore Singh chopped off Jugta Ram's penis with a sharp edged weapon (`ustra'
or barber's razor). At this, Jugta Ram became unconscious and when he gained consciousness
he found that he was admitted in Barmer hospital.
Ram related the story to the doctors in the hospital and also his brother
Kheraj Ram who came there with some persons.
police registered the F.I.R. of Jugta Ram on 5.2.1994under sub-Section 307/326.
Initially the investigation was handed over to the Additional S.P., Barmer, but
thereafter it was transferred to the C.I.D., Crime Branch which added the
offences of Sections 343 and 120B I.P.C. Thereafter, at the instance of the State
Government the investigation was transferred to the C.B.I., which investigated
the case and submitted a charge sheet.
accused denied the prosecution case, but the trial court found all the three
accused guilty vide its judgment dated21.12.2005. The fourth accused Bheru
Singh died during the trial.
trial court sentenced accused Kishore Singh to rigorous imprisonment for life
and a fine of Rs. 5000/- under Section 326IPC and 7 years rigorous imprisonment
and a fine of Rs. 1000/-under Section 308 IPC. It also sentenced him under
Sections 323and 343 IPC. The trial court sentenced accused Sohan Singh to
6months rigorous imprisonment under Section 323 IPC and 1 years' rigorous
imprisonment under Section 343 IPC.
trial court also sentenced accused Sumer Dan to 10 years rigorous imprisonment
and a fine of Rs. 2000/- under Sections326/114 IPC and also 7 years' rigorous
imprisonment and a fine of Rs. 2000/- under Sections 308/114 IPC and further 5
years' rigorous imprisonment under Section 120B IPC read with some other
provisions of the IPC.
appeal the High Court acquitted Sohan Singh and Sumer Dan and reduced the
sentence of Kishore Singh to the sentence already undergone for the conviction
under Section 326 IPC and a fine of Rs. 1 lakh, and 1 years' rigorous
imprisonment for the offence under Section 343 IPC which was altered to Section
this appeal has come up before us against the judgment of the High Court.
are of the opinion that the judgment of the High Court acquitting accused Sohan
Singh and Sumer Dan and reducing the sentence of accused Kishore Singh cannot
be sustained as it amounts to gross travesty of justice.
KTS Tulsi, learned senior counsel appearing for accused Kishore Singh,
submitted that in this case Section 335 of the IP Capplies and hence Section
326 is not applicable. He argued that there was a sudden and grave provocation
to accused Kishore Singh by the injured witness Jugta Ram whose penis was
chopped off. Learned counsel submitted that before 5.2.1994 there was only a
suspicion that Jugta Ram was having an affair with the wife of Bheru Singh, but
on 5.2.1994 when he admitted this fact there was a sudden and grave provocation
since Kishore Singh is a relative of Bheru Singh. With respect, we do not
It may be mentioned that Jugta Ram had been kept in police lockup from 2.2.1994
to 5.2.1994 without even producing him before a magistrate as is required by
Article 22 of the Constitution and Section 57 Cr.P.C.. Jugta Ram's penis was
cut off by accused Kishore Singh by a razor after accused Sumer Dan held Jugta
Ram.In our opinion, it cannot be said there was a sudden grave provocation so
as to attract Section 335 IPC, rather it was a pre-meditated act by Sumer Dan
and Kishore Singh. Kishore Singhwas carrying a sharp edged weapon with him at
the time when he cut off Jugta Ram's penis. Policemen do not normally carry any
sharp edged weapon, like a barber's razor, with them. Thus it evident that it
was a pre-meditated act on the part of Kishore Singh. Also, Sumer Dan cannot
say that there was a sudden and grave provocation to him when he held Jugta
Ram. Sumer Dan is not related to Bheru Singh or his wife. Hence, neither
Kishore Singh nor Sumer Dan could have any sudden and grave provocation. The
evidence on record reveals that third-degree methods were applied to Jugta Ram
ever since he was brought to the police station on 2.2.1994. Thus Section 335
will not apply and instead Section 326 IPC applies in this case.
have carefully perused the evidence on record and wesee no reason to disbelieve
the deposition of the injured witness Jugta Ram.
regards the argument that there were no witnesses other than Jugta Ram, in our
opinion in a police station it is hardly possible for there to be any witness
there except the policemen and the victim. A police station is not a public
road or public place where people can see what is going on.
Rakesh Dwivedi, learned senior counsel for Sumer Dan submitted that Sumer Dan
was not present at the police station when the incident occurred. We do not
agree. Jugta Ram clearly stated in his deposition before the court (and earlier
in his FIR) that Sumer Dan had caught his neck and put his hand on Jugta Ram's mouth
and Kishore Singh chopped off his penis with a sharp edged weapon. Jugta Ram
had no enmity with Sumer Dan and hence there was no reason for him to make a
false statement against Sumer Dan. Moreover, we find it difficult to believe
that one person unaided can chop off the penis of an adult.
Rakesh Dwivedi, learned counsel then submitted that some of the witnesses who
are CBI officials had deposed that Sumer Dan was not present at the police
station at the time of the incident. We are not inclined to believe those
witnesses. At any rate their version is based on inferences drawn from the case
diary maintained by the accused police officers. On the other hand, there is no
reason for disbelieving Jugta Ram, for the reasons already stated above. He is
an injured witness, and normally the Court gives more weight to the evidence of
an injured witness.
regards SHO Sohan Singh, Ms. Aishwarya Bhati, learned counsel for this accused,
submitted that the only evidence against him is that he was present at the
police station when Jugta Ram was brought there and he slapped Jugta Ram.
However, being the SHO of the police station we find it difficult to believe
that he was unaware of what was going on at the police station, and we see no reason
to disbelieve Jugta Ram.
a person is brought to the police station and locked up there, obviously he is
under arrest. Article 22(2) of the Constitution requires that within 24 hours
of the arrest the arrested person must be produced before a magistrate, and the
same is the requirement in Section 57 Cr.P.C. It is admitted by the accused
that Jugta Ram was never produced before the magistrate within 24 hours, rather
he was kept in the police station from 8 p.m. on 2.2.1994 up to 8a.m. on
5.2.1994 when he was tortured in the police station leading to the incident
after which he was shifted to the hospital. Sohan Singh being the S.H.O. is
squarely to blame for this deliberate lapse. It has come in the evidence of
Jugta Ram that when he was brought to the police station on 2.2.1994 Sohan
Singh was present here and he slapped Jugta Ram. We see no reason to disbelieve
this statement. Hence it cannot be said that Sohan Singh was unaware of the
all the accused are guilty of totally flouting and throwing to the winds the
directives of this Court in D.K. Basu vs. State of West Bengal 1997 (1) SCC 416
(vide paragraph 35).That decision outlaws third degree methods in police
stations, but it is well known that third degree methods are still widely used
in many of our police stations, as this case reveals. Hence accused Sohan Singh
cannot be absolved of the charge against him under Section 342 IPC.
The doctor (Madan Mohan Purohit) who examined Jugta Ram deposed that on
5.2.1994 he inspected Jugta Ram at Govt. hospital Barmer and he found an injury
about 8 x 8 cm, deep up to the muscle. There was no penis and blood was seeping
from the injury. The injury was up to the basis of the penis and towards the scrotum.
The injury was serious in nature and was made by a sharp edged weapon about 4
hours earlier. Jugta Ram was brought to the hospital by two constables
one of whom was Moolaram. Obviously after cutting off Jugta Ram's penis the accused
must have got scared that Jugta Ram may die of bleeding, and hence they sent
him to the hospital.
Ram was also examined by Dr. M.L. Motiyani in the hospital and he found that
Jugta Ram's penis had been cut off. We have also seen the deposition of Dr. H.
K. Singhal, Medical Officer in the Barmer hospital who deposed to the same
have also seen the evidence of Jugta Ram's brother Kheraj Ram, and the other
the facts of the case we see no reason to disbelieve the prosecution case and
we are surprised how the High Court has acquitted Sohan Singh and Sumer Dan and
reduced the sentence of accused Kishore Singh. It was a barbaric act on the
part of the accused, who deserve no leniency.
our opinion, policemen who commit criminal acts deserve harsher punishment than
other persons who commit such acts, because it is the duty of the policemen to
protect the people, and not break the law themselves. If the protector
becomes the predator civilized society will cease to exist. As the Bible says
"If the salt has lost its flavour, wherewith shall it be salted?
(Matthew5, Mark 9.50 and Luke 14.34-35)", or as the ancient Romans used to
say "Who will guard the praetorian guards?"
the facts of the case we enhance the sentence of accused Kishore Singh to 5
years' rigorous imprisonment under Section326 IPC and a fine of Rs.50,000/-
failing which he shall further undergo rigorous imprisonment for six months.
Kishore Singh is also found guilty under Section 342 IPC and sentenced to six months
rigorous imprisonment. The two sentences shall run concurrently. In case
the fine is deposited the same shall be paid to the victim as compensation.
regards accused Sumer Dan, his acquittal is set aside and he is found guilty of
the offence under Sections 326 read with Section 120B IPC and is sentenced to 3
years rigorous imprisonment and a fine of Rs. 50,000/- failing which he shall further
suffer 1 years' rigorous imprisonment. He is also found guilty of the offence
under Section 342 IPC and is sentenced to six months rigorous
imprisonment. The two sentences shall run concurrently. The amount of
fine if deposited shall be paid as compensation to the victim.
regards accused Sohan Singh, we set aside his acquittal and hold him guilty
under Section 342 IPC and sentence him to six months simple imprisonment and a
fine of Rs. 10,000/- failing which he shall further suffer one month's simple
imprisonment. The amount if deposited shall be paid to the victim
ascompensation.35. The appeals filed by the CBI are allowed, and the High
Court judgment is set aside.
(T. S. Thakur)