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Acquitted in Section 498A IPC


CNR No. DLNT01­011536­2016
Criminal Appeal No. 57510/2016

Kedar Nath
S/o Late Sh. Niranjan Dass
R/o House No. 33/9, Village Bhuna,
Distt. Fatehabad, Haryana. …..Appellant


State (Govt. NCT of Delhi) …..Respondent
Date of institution : 15.10.2016 Date of arguments : 22.10.2018 Date of Judgement : 23.10.2018.


1. By this judgement I shall dispose of a criminal appeal directed against a judgement dated 10.8.2016 and an order on sentence dated 15.9.2016 passed by Ms Shefali Barnala Tandon, Ld. Metropolitan Magistrate, who had convicted the appellant under Section 498A IPC and imposed a sentence of simple imprisonment of one year and a fine in the sum of Rs.10,000/­ under Section 498A IPC upon appellant in the prosecution launched on FIR No. 66/1995, PS Adarsh Nagar.

2. Notice of criminal appeal was issued to State. Complainant through Sh. N. S. Kadyan, Advocate also joined the prosecution. Trial court record, which CA No. 57510/2016 Page 1 of 4 Kedar Nath Vs. State Judgement dt. 23.10.2018 is annexed with another appeal, was summoned and arguments are heard.

3. Complainant (Smt. Madhu Bala) was married to Radhey Shyam on 8.12.1990. Present appellant is brother in law (Devar) of complainant. Complainant alleged that her husband, mother in law, father in law, sisters in law and brothers in law including the appellant had subjected the complainant to cruelty by making unlawful demands of dowry and that they had misappropriated her Istridhan. On these allegations, FIR was registered and charge sheet was filed against her husband and relatives of husband including the appellant, who is the brother of her husband.

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4. A charge under Section 498A and 406 IPC was framed.

5. Prosecution examined in all 8 prosecution witnesses.

6. Statement under Section 313 CrPC of appellant was recorded and in all 12 defence witnesses were examined.

7. For the purpose of disposal of the present appeal, evidence of PW1 Mahavir Prasad, PW3 Madhu Bala, PW4 Subhash Chand, PW5 Smt. Chandrakanta, PW6 Smt. Mam Kaur and PW7 Ramesh Kumar are relevant. PW3 Smt. Bahdu Bala is the complainant and she testified that after her marriage, her father in law Niranjan Dass, mother in law Fulli Devi, Jaith Ram Niwas, Raj Kumar, Devar Kedar Nath, husband Radhey Shyam, Jethani Roshni and Saroj, Nanad Nirmala were not satisfied with dowry articles and they started harassing her. Accused persons were also not satisfied with Chhuchhak items and they insulted complainant’s brother namely Subhash by calling Bhuke Nange. All the accused persons made demand of Rs.1 lac for starting the shop of her husband CA No. 57510/2016 Page 2 of 4 Kedar Nath Vs. State Judgement dt. 23.10.2018 and on refusal all of them started beating her. On 5.11.1992, all the accused persons came towards her and asked her whether she would fulfill the demand or not. Her jaith Ram Niwas stood at the door to keep watch, her husband and jaith Raj Kumar removed her jewellery and handed over the same to her mother in law and asked to keep it in the name of Darshana (sister in law). Then her jaith and husband gave beatings to her and then both jaithanis and Nanad Nirmala gave beating to her.

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8. Perusal of this testimony shows that nowhere specific act/role has been attributed to the appellant except a general allegation including him in the term “all the accused”. Similarly PW4 Subhash Chand, the brother of complainant, testified that all the accused persons were not satisfied with Chhuchhak articles and that accused Raj Kumar, Ram Niwas and Nirmala Devi openly said that they were expecting colour TV and VCR etc.. PW5 Smt. Chandrakanta, the mother of complainant, also testified that in­laws of her daughter were not satisfied with the dowry given by them in marriage and chhuchhak and they used to harass her. She also testified that accused Radhey Shyam, Ram Niwas and Raju told her daughter to bring Rs.1.5 lacs. In her testimony she has not made specific allegation against the appellant. PW7 Ramesh Kumar also testified that in­laws including Nanad Nirmal, jaithanis Roshni and Saroj, jaith Ram Niwas and Raj Kumar, father in law Niranjan Dass, mother in law Smt. Fulli Devi and Devar Kedar were not satisfied with the dowry articles. But thereafter, in his entire testimony PW7 has not attributed any specific role to the appellant. PW1 Mahavir Prasad and PW6 Smt. Mam Kaur have also CA No. 57510/2016 Page 3 of 4 Kedar Nath Vs. State Judgement dt. 23.10.2018 not referred to any role to the appellant.

9. In view of the quality of evidence as discussed above, an omnibus allegation against all the in­laws is not suffice. It is pertinent to note that appellant is Devar i.e. brother of the husband of the complainant. It is not clear from the testimony of the aforesaid witnesses as to how he harassed the complainant. Ld. Metropolitan Magistrate has concentrated her attention to the various contradictions but has not dissected the role of each accused. I have already discussed above that specific acts of the appellant causing cruelty to the complainant have not been brought on record. In such circumstances, the appellant deserves benefit of doubt. The appellant is accordingly acquitted. Appeal is allowed.

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10. Copy of judgement be placed in the trial court record. Appeal file be consigned to record room.

Announced in the open court on 23.10.2018.

Digitally signed by VINOD KUMAR
Date: 2018.10.23 10:17:24 +0530
(Vinod Kumar) Additional Sessions Judge­05 (North) Rohini Courts Delhi

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