HIGH COURT OF CHHATTISGARH, BILASPUR
Criminal Appeal No.1241 of 2000
Judgment Reserved on : 28.11.2017
Judgment Delivered on : 16.1.2018
The State of Madhya Pradesh (now Chhattisgarh)
Mohd. Abdul Raseed Khan, son of Shri Abdul Sakur Khan, aged about 40
years, Lecturer, Government Higher Secondary School, Badgaon, Village
and Police Station Daundi Lohara, District Durg, M.P. (now Chhattisgarh)
For Appellant/State : Smt. Smita Ghai, Panel Lawyer
For Respondent : Shri Adil Minhaj, Advocate
Hon’ble Shri Justice Arvind Singh Chandel
1. This appeal preferred by the State/Appellant is directed against the
judgment dated 23.9.1999 passed in Criminal Case No.161 of
1999 by the Judicial Magistrate First Class, Balod, District Durg
acquitting the Respondent/accused of the charge framed under
2. Facts of the case, in brief, are that on 1.3.1999 Complainant
Triveni Ratre, PW1 submitted a written report, Ex.P1 alleging that
on 24.2.1999 at about 5:00 p.m., the Respondent/accused, who, at
the time of incident, was a Lecturer at Government Higher
Secondary School, Badgaon and where she was a student of 11 th
standard, during the period of practical, asked the other students to
go out, but asked her to stay there and thereafter he caught her
hands and kissed her cheek. On the basis of the written report,
Ex.P1, a crime under Section 354 IPC was registered on 1.3.1999
vide First Information Report, Ex.P3. On completion of the
investigation, a charge-sheet was filed against the Respondent for
offence punishable under Section 354 IPC. Charge was framed
against him under Section 354 IPC.
3. To rope in the Respondent/accused, the prosecution examined as
many as 7 witnesses. Statement of the Respondent was also
recorded under Section 313 Cr.P.C. in which he denied the
circumstances appearing against him, pleaded innocence and
false implication. No witness has been examined in his defence.
4. Case of the prosecution is mainly based on the evidence of
Complainant Triveni, PW1 and Toran, PW2. The Judicial
Magistrate First Class, on due scrutiny of the evidence of Triveni,
PW1 and Toran, PW2, found that their evidence is suspicious.
Therefore, the Judicial Magistrate First Class did not rely upon their
evidence and acquitted the Respondent of the charge framed
against him. Hence, this appeal by the State.
5. Learned Counsel appearing for the Appellant/State argued that
Triveni, PW1 and Toran, PW2 are reliable witnesses. PW1 lodged
a prompt written report, Ex.P1, which contains the name of the
Respondent/accused. The impugned judgment of acquittal is
erroneous on facts and law and it is not sustainable in the eyes of
law as there is sufficient legally acceptable evidence to conclude
the guilt against the Respondent. The Trial Court ought to have
believed on the version of the Complainant and the evidence of the
prosecution witnesses as their testimonies cannot be discarded
without any cogent reason. Therefore, the findings of the Trial
Court are improper.
6. On the other hand, Learned Counsel appearing for the Respondent
supported the impugned judgment and opposed the above
7. I have heard Learned Counsel appearing for the parties and
perused the material available on record minutely.
8. Complainant Triveni, PW1 has deposed that on 24.2.1999 at about
5:00 p.m., after the period of practical, the Respondent asked her
to stop in the practical room. She stayed there. Thereafter, he
caught her and kissed her on the cheek. Thereafter, other students
came in the practical room to keep back the articles of practical.
Thereafter, leave was declared in the school and, therefore, all the
students went out of the school. She has further stated that on the
same day, she informed her parents about the incident. Two days
thereafter, she informed her friend Toran, PW2 about the incident.
She has further stated that in connection with the incident, police
had come to the school and at that time she had given her written
report, ExP1 to the police.
9. Toran, PW2 has deposed that on the date of incident, she had not
gone to the school. On Saturday, when she went to the school,
Triveni, PW1 informed her about the incident.
10. Santosh PW3, Ramsingh PW6, and Tijiyabai PW7, brother, father
and mother of Complainant Triveni, respectively, have stated that
Complainant Triveni, PW1 had informed them about the incident on
the date of incident itself. Triveni, PW1, in her cross-examination,
has stated that at the time of incident, she had not shouted nor did
she inform about the incident soon thereafter to anybody. In
paragraph 8 of her cross-examination, she has categorically
admitted that the incident did not take place in the practical room,
but it took place in another room. But, in her police statement,
Ex.D1, she has stated that the incident took place in the practical
room. She has further admitted that after the incident, she
continued to attend the school without absent. From the admission
of Triveni, PW1, it is also clear that she had given the written
report, Ex.P1 to the police on 1.3.1999
11. Toran, PW2 has admitted that before the date of incident, the
Respondent had ousted her and Triveni, PW1 from the classroom.
She has further stated that on this the villagers had got angry.
Santosh, PW3 has also stated that the Respondent had ousted
Triveni, PW1 and Toran, PW2 from the classroom due to which the
villagers had got angry and they had surrounded the school. From
the above, it is also clear that the written report, Ex.P1 was not
given by Complainant Triveni in the police station, but it was given
to the police when they had come to the school in connection with
the alleged crime. The said written report, Ex.P1 is undated. Sub-
Inspector N.K. Suryawanshi, PW5 has also admitted that the
written report, Ex.P1 is undated and on the basis of the written
report, he had registered First Information Report, Ex.P3. In
paragraph 31 of his cross-examination, he has also admitted that
in the Rojnamcha Sanha, Ex.D4, 23.2.1999 is mentioned as the
date of incident.
12. On minute scrutiny of the evidence available on record, it is clear
that the written report, Ex.P1 is undated and date of the incident is
not mentioned therein. As per the Court statement of Triveni, PW1,
the date of incident is 24.2.1999, but, the date of incident
mentioned in the Rojnamcha Sanha, Ex.D4 is 23.2.1999. What is
the actual date of incident, whether it is 23.2.1999 or 24.2.1999 is
not clear. According to the Court statements of Santosh PW3,
Ramsingh PW6 and Tijiyabai PW7, they were informed about the
incident by the Complainant on the date of incident itself, but why
First Information Report was not lodged immediately is not
explained by the Complainant nor by the above witnesses. From a
bare perusal of the evidence on record, it is also clear that the
Respondent, when he was a Lecturer of the said school, had
ousted Complainant Triveni, PW1 and Toran, PW2 from the
classroom. Therefore, the villagers had got angry and surrounded
the school. When the police had come to the school for inquiry into
the said incident, at that time itself, Triveni gave the written report,
Ex.P1 to the police.
13. After going through the entire evidence available on record, I find
no compelling and substantial reason to interfere with the judgment
of acquittal under challenge. It is not a case in which the impugned
judgment may be said to be unreasonable or a case in which the
relevant and convincing materials have been eliminated in the
process of appreciation of the evidence on record. The Learned
Judicial Magistrate First Class has taken into consideration all the
relevant materials and has considered each and every aspects of
the matter to test the veracity of the complaint and has thereafter
recorded the finding of acquittal which appears to be reasonable.
14. In view of the foregoing, I do not find any substance in the appeal
filed by the State. Therefore, the appeal is dismissed. The
impugned judgment of acquittal is upheld.
15. Record of the Court below be sent back along with a copy of this
judgment forthwith for information and necessary compliance.
(Arvind Singh Chandel)