10 June 2024


High Court of Jammu and Kashmir

State Vs. Vijay Kumar and Ors.




High Court should not interfere with order of acquittal, if the view taken by trial court is a reasonable view based on evidence

By way of the instant appeal, a challenge is laid to the judgment passed by the Court of 2nd Additional Sessions Judge, in the case arising out of FIR registered under Section 302/34 of the Ranbir Penal Code (RPC) against the Respondents. By this judgment, the learned Trial Judge acquitted the Respondents for commission of the offences under Sections 302/34 of RPC with which they were charged.

It is submitted by Appellant that, the prosecution had placed sufficient material on record to support the charges and that the learned Trial Judge had not appreciated the evidence laid on record nor had correctly applied the law, resulting in the acquittal. The learned trial judge had taken a hyper-technical approach and that the conclusions drawn were against the weight of evidence placed on record.

The witnesses clearly admitted that, this occurrence took place on 8th of February, 2008. These witnesses made no effective effort to protect the deceased even though they were related to him. It was in the testimony of the two witnesses that, there were residential houses around the shop where the deceased was hung, yet they did not make any hue and cry for help and quietly drove on to their own house. In order to explain their conduct of this silence, they claimed that this was out of fear from the accused persons. The witnesses did not disclose the occurrence to any person on the next day or when the deceased was cremated. The learned Trial Judge has found that, the distance between their village and that of the accused Vijay Kumar was between 20 - 22 kms removing element of fear and that these two related witnesses maintained silence for a long period of 2 1/2 years.

It is thus well settled law that, present Court, while hearing an acquittal appeal can re-appreciate the evidence. However, it should not interfere with the order of acquittal if the view taken by the trial court is also a reasonable view of the evidence on record and the findings recorded by the trial court are not manifestly erroneous, contrary to the evidence on record or perverse.

On a consideration of the entirety of the record, it cannot be said that the prosecution was able to connect the two persons with the commission of the offences by leading unimpeachable evidence or that the view taken by the trial Court was not based on the evidence led by the prosecution. On the contrary, the findings of the trial Court are premised on a close consideration of the evidence placed on record. It cannot be held that, the findings are either erroneous or perverse. Appeal dismissed.

Tags : Acquittal Evidence Legality

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