TITLE OF THE CASE– Ram Kumar Vs. State of Haryana
CASE NO - Appeal [crl.] 32 of 1992
PETITIONER– Ram Kumar
RESPONDENT - State of Haryana
BENCH– DR. A. S. Anand and Faizan Uddin
DATE OF JUDGEMENT– 07/10/1994
The Judgement of the Court was delivered by Faizan Uddin, J.
FACTS BRIEFLY –
Appellant Ram Kumar challenged the order and also the judgement of Punjab and Haryana Court. This is an appeal made by the appellant under Section 379 of the Code of Criminal Procedure. He was convicted under Section 302/ 34 for inflicting the murder of Mahinder and sentencing him to captivity also as under Section 307/34 for making an attempt to commit the murder of Kamla and her son Rajinder, to bear rigorous imprisonment for three years on every count, after reversing the order of the Session Judge, where the appellant and the other three co-accused Nanu, Razari and Saatal were acquitted of the charges.
Smt. Kamla the complainant, was the wife of Ram Kumar. He was the son of co-accused Nanu Ram. The father of Nanu Ram owned 76 Killas of land which he transferred to his grandson i.e., Ram Kumar. Ram Kumar executed a will in respect of 50 Killas of land in favor of his parents in equal shares and he kept 26 Killas of land with himself and on his death about four and half years before, the land came under the cultivation of his wife. During the lifetime of his husband, she used to not stay with her in-laws. She had two sons namely Dharambir and Rajinder and two daughters. Kamla was cultivating lands with the help of some labourers and she used to go out to do household work which was not approved by his father-in-law. Nanu Ram, father-in-law was creating a lot of problems in the cultivation of land and so Kamla reported the matter to police and proceedings were initiated against him. The produce of land was given to Kamla. After that the land had to be left uncultivated for one year and this according to the prosecution provided motive to commit the crime.
Later, Kamla hired a tractor from one Ram Prasad and went for ploughing the land with her sons. Deceased Omprakash was working as a laborer in the land. The tractor was ridden by Mahender.
After ploughing some of the land, it was evening and so they stopped at around 7 pm. While returning Kamla was sitting at the left mud guard of the tractor and Omprakash on the right. They reached at the boundary of the land and they saw Nanu ram and Santlal [ who is the husband of daughter od Nanu ram] and the appellant Ram Kumar carrying pistols. Nanu ram fired a shot from his pistol direct at Omprakash, who fell and died. The driver went towards the field of one Mukha Harijan. Kamla, her sons and the driver got down from the tractor and hid themselves in a cotton crop standing in a near by field. Again, they fired the shots at them but none of them got injured. They tried to run towards the bus stand, and Nanu ram again fired at them and one bullet hit kamla, Mahender was also hit and Rajinder, son of Kamla also sustained a bullet injury.
Mahender died on the spot. In the morning, Kamla hired a jeep and somehow reached to the civil hospital. The doctor provided all the information to the police about the incident. The police wrote down their statements. The, Police found the dead body of Mahender at the place of occurrence.
After nine months police arrested the accused. All the accused were put on trial. At the trial all the accused adjured their guilt and pleaded false implication. After hearing the parties, the trial Judge acquitted the accused. The State of Haryana filed an appeal against the order passed by Trial Court. The co-accused Nanu ram’s appeal was abated because he died during the pendency of the appeal.
The appellant Ram Kumar has been convicted under section 302/304 of the Penal Code for causing the death of Om. He has been punished to undergo life imprisonment and to pay a fine of Rs. 5000. The appellant has been further convicted for causing injuries to Kamla and her sons for which he has to undergo rigorous punishment for three years. All the sentences have been directed to run simultaneously. It is against all these convictions the appellant has filed an appeal before the court.
The counsel for the appellant contented that the Trial Court had recorded the order of acquittal of all the accused, and the High Court should not have interfered with the order of acquittal. Therefore, we shall examine the evidence to see whether the conclusions given by the Trial Court in acquitting the accused are reasonable or not.
The High Court found that all the submissions mentioned by the learned counsel for the appellant are without any substance or merit. It is completely clear that the findings recorded by the Trial are against the weight of evidence on record.
The learned Trial Judge was wholly unjustified and unreasonable in discharging the accused appellant. After a dose scrutiny of the evidence and therefore the material on record discussed above, we are of the firm opinion that the view taken by the High Court is the only possible view and, therefore, the High Court was very reasonable in reversing the judgment and order of final judgement glided by the learned Session Judge and rightly held the deceased accused Nanu and the appellant liable for the two deaths. Consequently, for the explanations stated above the appeal fails and is herewith discharged.
This article is written by Manasi Khadilkar of Gopaldas Jhamatmal Advani Law College.