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Gurjant Singh vs State Of Punjab on 23 August, 2018

CRA-D-757-DB-2013 (O/M) -1-

783
IN THE HIGH COURT OF PUNJAB AND HARYANA
AT CHANDIGARH

CRA-D-757-DB-2013 (O/M)
Date of decision : 23.8.2018

Gurjant Singh …… Appellant (s)

Versus

State of Punjab ……. Respondent (s)

CORAM: HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE A.B. CHAUDHARI
HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE KULDIP SINGH

Present:- Mr. Vinod Ghai, Senior Advocate, with,
Mr. R.D. Chandiwala, Advocate,
for appellant.

Ms. Anju Arora, Additional A.G. Punjab.

Mr. H.P.S. Ishar, Advocate,
for complainant.

1. Whether the Reporters of local newspaper may be allowed to
see the judgment ?
2. To be referred to the Reporter or not.
3. Whether the judgment should be reported in the digest ?
-.- -.-

KULDIP SINGH, J.

Impugned in present appeal is the judgment of conviction and

order of sentence dated 23.5.2013, passed by learned Additional Sessions

Judge, Sangrur, vide which appellant was convicted under Section 376 IPC,

under Section 6 read with Section 5 (f) of Protection of Children from

Sexual Offences and under Section 3 read with Clause (xi) (xii) Clause (2)

(v) of Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act

and was sentenced as under :-

’54. …….. Gurjant Singh is sentenced to undergo rigorous

imprisonment for life time and to pay fine of Rs. 10,000/-

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(Rupees Ten thousand only) and in default of payment of fine to

undergo further R.I. for a period of 6 (Six) months under

Section 376 of IPC. He is also sentenced to undergo rigorous

imprisonment for life time and to pay fine of Rs. 10,000/-

(Rupees Ten thousand only) and in default of payment of fine to

undergo further R.I. for a period of 6 (Six) months under

Section 6 read with Section 5 (f) of Protection of Children from

Sexual Offences. He is also sentenced to undergo rigorous

imprisonment for life time and to pay fine of Rs. 10,000/-

(Rupees Ten Thousand only) and in default of payment of fine

to undergo further R.I. for a period of 6 (Six) months under

Section 3 read with Clause (xi) (xii) Clause (2) (v) of Scheduled

Caste and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. All

the sentences are ordered to run concurrently.’

1. Facts

The facts of the case are that present appellant was a

mathematics teacher in Government Senior Secondary School, Namol,

District Sangrur and was residing at village Namol. The prosecutrix Ms. X

(identity withheld), aged about 14 years, was studying in 8th class in said

school. It was alleged that on 31.12.2012, accused called the prosecutrix at

his house for checking practical of mathematics. The prosecutrix went to the

house of accused at about 12 O’ clock on 31.12.2012. The accused was

alone in house at that time. It is alleged that accused forcibly took the

prosecutrix inside the room and bolted the room. Thereafter, he committed

rape upon prosecutrix. The prosecutrix did not disclose this fact to anybody.

However, on 12.2.2013, she disclosed the incident to her father Chet Singh

(complainant). While Chet Singh was going to police station with her

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daughter (victim), SI/SHO Rajwant Singh met him at Bus Stand Cheema and

recorded his statement (Ex.PA). After making the endorsement, same was

sent to police station. There, formal FIR (Ex.PA/3) under Section 376, 506

IPC was registered on 13.2.2013 at about 2:00/2:15 AM. At the same time,

complainant produced the certificate of his caste before the police. The

prosecutrix was taken to the hospital and was got medico legally examined

by Dr. Ramanveer Kaur Boparai, Medical Officer, Civil Hospital, Sangrur.

On 14.2.2013, accused was arrested. The statement of prosecutrix under

Section 164 Cr.P.C. (Ex.PC) was recorded by Balwinder Kaur Dhaliwal,

learned JMIC (Duty), Sunam, on 16.2.2013. The accused was also got

medico legally examination and found fit for sexual intercourse by doctor.

The site plan of place of occurrence was prepared. During the course of

investigation, birth certificate and school record of prosecutrix was taken

into possession. As per birth certificate (Ex.PW7/A), date of birth of

prosecutrix is 3.12.1999. The statement of principal of school was also

recorded. After completion of investigation, challan was presented against

accused.

Accused was chargesheeted under Section 376 IPC, under

Section 5 (f) and 6 of Protection of Children from Sexual Offences and

under Section 3 (xi) of Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of

Atrocities) Act, to which accused plead not guilty.

To prove its case, prosecution examined complainant Chet

Singh (PW1), prosecutrix (PW2), Dr. Devinder Goyal (PW3), Dr.

Ramanbir Kaur Boparai (PW4), SC Dharminder Singh (PW5), SC Nek

Singh (PW6), Gurtej Singh (PW7), DSP Jaskiranjit Singh Teja (PW8), SI

Rajwant Singh (PW9), Paramjit Singh (PW10), Pargat Singh (PW11) and

Munish Kumar (PW12) and closed its evidence.

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When examined under Section 313 Cr.P.C., accused denied as

incorrect the evidence led against him and took the following plea :-

‘I am innocent. I am teaching the students and in service since

31.5.1995. Nobody ever raised any accusing finger towards my

character. I have grown up children. My daughter is a student

of MBBS and my son has passed +2 in medical and now

preparing of entrance examination. I was not present in my

village Namol on 31.12.2012 at the alleged time of occurrence.

On that day i.e. on 31.12.2012 was present at Railway Station,

Sunam from 11:45 A.M. to 12:45 P.M. alongwith my wife in

connection with the reservation of railway tickets as I was to go

to bring my daughter from Kishanganj, Bihar, where she is

studying in Mata Gujri Memorial Medical College and Lions

Seva Kendra Hospital of MBBS, part-I course. The tickets

were booked for 9.2.2013 and for return on 13.2.2013. I left for

Kishanganj on 9.2.2013 and reached on 10.2.2013 and stayed in

room no. 104 of college guest house from 10.2.2013 at 6:00 pm

to 12.2.2013 at 5:00 pm. I also made a mobile call from my

mobile No. 94630-05476 to my daughter 08987254012 when I

was present at Sunam on 31.12.2012 on the railway station. My

co-villager Surjit Kaur w/o Jang Singh also met us at the

railway station who was going from Sunam to Lehra alongwith

her daughter Raj Kaur. I disclosed this fact to the DSP and

other police officials but they did not listen me. My wife also

moved applications to ADGP Crime and SSP, Sangrur, but

police wrongly challend me in haste without properly

investigation and inquiry in the present case. I have been

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falsely implicated due to party faction in the village to destroy

the carrier of my children and defame me and my family. ‘

In defence, accused examined Ajay Kumar, Head Booking

Clerk, Railway Station, Sunam (DW1), HC Makhan Khan (DW2), Darshan

Singh, Senior Telephone Office Assistant, Office of General Manager

Telecommunication, BSNL, Sangrur (DW3), Smt. Surjit Kaur (DW4), Smt.

Sarabjit Kaur (DW5) and closed the defence evidence.

After hearing the prosecution, learned counsel for accused and

going through the evidence, learned Additional Sessions Judge, Sangrur,

convicted and sentenced the accused as aforesaid.

We have heard learned senior counsel for appellant, learned

State counsel, learned counsel for complainant and have also carefully gone

through the lower Court file.

As per prosecution case, as putforth in the statement of Chet

Singh (complainant), is that accused, who was a Maths teacher in

Government Senior Secondary School, Namol, called the prosecutrix, who

was also a student of same school, to his house on 31.12.2012 at 12 O’ clock

(noon) on the pretext of checking practical of mathematics. When

prosecutrix went to house of accused, he was alone in the house and

committed rape upon her. The prosecutrix did not disclose this fact to her

parents at that time, but disclose same to his father on 12.2.2013, upon which

next day i.e. 13.2.2013, complainant approached police and made statement

(Ex.PA), which made the basis of FIR. In this way, there is delay of about 1

month and 13 days in lodging the FIR. When prosecutrix was examined

under Section 164 Cr.P.C. before learned Judicial Magistrate 1st Class

(Duty), Sunam, on 16.2.2013, she also stated that accused teaches

mathematics to them. On 31.12.2012, she was called by accused for

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checking practical book of mathematics. She went to his house at 12 O’

clock. Nobody was present in the house. The door of the house was open.

Accused was sitting in courtyard. While checking the copy, he went into the

drawing room and called her inside. When she went inside, accused bolted

the door and after removing her clothes, committee rape upon her.

Thereafter, he gave her a tablet forcibly. She does not know the name of the

tablet. She returned to her home and due to fear, she did not disclose the

incident to anybody. She further alleged that after that accused has been

teasing her in the school as sometime he gave a hint by blinking eyes. If she

requests for leave, then he would say that she has to kiss him. When the

matter went beyond her tolerance, she narrated the entire incident to her

parents.

Cross examination of Chet Singh (complainant) reveals that

Sarabjit Kaur wife of Gurjant Singh (accused) remained member panchayat

in the years 2003 to 2008 of village Namol. At that time, Charanjit Singh

was Sarpanch of village. He admitted that dharnas were held for registration

of case after the incident. The persons from the communist party joined the

dharnas. Charanjit Singh, Sarpanch, was heading those dharnas. Police met

them on 13.2.2013. Ex-member Panchayat Dalip Singh was with him at that

time. Thereafter, the case was registered and no dharnas were held

thereafter. It has also come out that daughter of accused was studying in

MBBS course in Kishanganj, Bihar. City Sunam is about 8 kilometers from

village Namol and it takes about 20 minutes from Namol to go to Sunam by

bus. The railway station is at a distance of 9-10 kilometers from bus stand,

village Namol. Chet Singh admitted that there is party faction in the village,

but claim that he does not belong to any party. He further disclosed that his

daughter has disclosed the occurrence to him and his wife at about 9:00 pm.

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Then, he informed the Ex-Member Dalip Singh after calling him to his

house. Charanjit Singh also came to his house at night. Police met them at

about 9:30/10:00 pm. They remained at bus stand for about 20-30 minutes.

The defence version putforth by accused to the complainant as

well as prosecutrix is that on the day of occurrence i.e. 31.12.2012, accused

remained present alongwith his wife at Railway Station, Sunam, from 11:45

AM to 12:45 PM (noon) in connection with reservation of tickets as he was

to go to his daughter in Kishanganj at Bihar to bring her back, who was

studying in MBBS there. He further stated that at the railway station, he had

made a call from his mobile number 94630-05476 to his daughter on her

mobile number 08987254012.

The cross examination of prosecutrix reveals that according to

her, on the day of occurrence, she had got checked the practical book of

mathematics from accused. After checking the practical book, accused had

put the initial and date on the book. Said practical book was never

demanded from her by police during investigation. She had not gone to

house of accused prior to present occurrence. There were 12-13 girl

students in the class. She did not disclose incident to any of her class mates.

Data Singh is her uncle and is a teacher at village Mauran. She stated that

Data Singh got recorded his statement at Bus Stand Cheema. Her cross

examination further reveals that 2-3 houses fall between house of accused

and her house. She disclosed that she did not receive any injury at the time

of incident. She also admitted that dharnas were held and one of the

dharnas was held at Sangrur. She also denied the defence version put forth

by accused as narrated above.

It is necessary to examine the medical evidence. According to

the statement of Dr. Ramanveer Kaur Boparai (PW4), Medical Officer, Civil

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Hospital, Sangrur, prosecutrix was brought to Civil Hospital, Sangrur, on

13.2.2013 for medico legal examination. A board of three doctors was

constituted to conduct the medico legal examination. The other members of

board were Dr. Poonam Dhir and Dr. Kirandeep Kaur, then Medical

Officers, Civil Hospital, Sangrur. The doctor found that hymen was absent.

Old hymenal tags present, not tender, no matting of public hair vaginal

introitous admits one finger easily. No fresh injury or violence mark present

on pubic area. The doctor took two glass slides with smear from vaginal

discharge. Two culture tubes with swab sticks from external genitalia area

and posterior fornix were also taken and sent to laboratory.

Now, the report of laboratory (Ex.PW4/G) shows that

spermatozoa were detected in the contents of Ex. I and Ex. II, whereas no

spermatozoa was found on Ex. III and Ex. IV i.e. on the pubic hairs and glass

slides. Dr. Ramanbir Kaur Boparai (PW4) admitted in examination in chief

that she had opined that sexual intercourse had taken place on the person of

prosecutrix. In cross examination she stated that as spermatozoa were found

in the chemical examiner report, so the possibility of sexual intercourse

having taken place within 48 hours cannot be rule out.

The evidence of doctor clearly establishes that prosecutrix had

sexual intercourse within 48 hours from 13.2.2013 when she was medico

legally examined. The present occurrence dates back 31.12.2012.

Therefore, the medical report will not show that sexual intercourse was

committed with prosecutrix on 31.12.2012. Rather, it shows that sexual

intercourse has taken place within 48 hours from 13.2.2013. Though, the

possibility of prosecutrix having indulged in sexual intercourse earlier also

cannot be ruled out from the medico legal report.

Now, the question would arise as to whether the story putforth

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by complainant and prosecutrix is to be accepted or version putforth by

accused is to be accepted ?

It is an admitted fact that before the registration of case,

dharnas were held, which means that dharna was not held for one day, but

for some days. That would mean that the occurrence had come to the notice

of complainant even before 12.2.2013.

DSP Jaskiranjit Singh Teja (PW8) admitted in cross

examination that daughter of accused was doing MBBS course at

Kishanganj, Bihar.

The cross examination of School Principal Paramjit Singh

(PW10) shows that accused had taken leave from 11.2.2013 to 14.2.2013 to

visit his daughter at Kishanganj, Bihar. He has also stated that on

12.2.2013, mother of prosecutrix had come to school. There was some

discussion regarding misbehaviour with prosecutrix, but no written

complaint was given to him by mother of prosecutrix on the ground that she

is an illiterate lady. Admittedly, prosecutrix belongs to scheduled caste as

proved by Munish Kumar (PW12). Prosecutrix is admittedly little less than

14 years as on the day of crime.

In order to prove that on the day of crime, he was not present in

his house at 12 O’ clock, accused examined Ajay Kumar, Head Booking

Clerk, Railway Station, Sunam (DW1), who stated that a reservation form

was filled in by Gurjant Singh son of Niranjan Singh, resident of VPO

Namol, on 31.12.2012 at 11:30 AM for train No. 15903, Sleeper Class, from

Kishanganj to Ambala. This was ticket for return journey from Kishanganj

to Ambala. Gurjant Singh has mentioned his telephone number 94630-

05476. This ticket was for two adults, one for Gurjant Singh, male and

second Navreet Kaur, female. The departure journey was for 9.2.2013 in

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train number 15610 from Jakhal to Kishanganj. This was for one adult,

namely, Gurjant Singh. He proved the photostat copy (Ex.DW1/A). He has

stated that he has also brought the reservation form for return journey of

train number 12505 from Kishanganj to Anand Vihar and same was meant

for Gurjant Singh, male and Navreet Kaur, female. This form was filled in

on 31.12.2012 at 12:00 PM at Sunam Railway Station, copy of which is

Ex.DW1/B. He has also brought the refund form, filled in by said Gurjant

Singh, dated 31.12.2012 at 12:03 PM, copy of which is Ex.DW1/C. In cross

examination, he states that the form pertains to reservation form and same

can be collected by any person on that day.

Accused also examined Darshan Singh (DW3), Senior

Telephone Office Assistant, Office of General Manager Telecommunication,

BSNL, Sangrur, who proved that mobile number 94630-05476 is issued in

the name of Gurjant Singh. He brought the relevant records to prove the

same. He also proved call details of said mobile number from 30.12.2012 to

1.1.2013. He stated that said mobile was being used on 31.12.2012 from

11.38.24 to 12.26.24 at Indra Market, Sunam, and at 12.56.54, same mobile

was used from Sunam Tehsil.

Accused also examined one Surjit Kaur (DW4) wife of Jang

Singh, who claims that on 31.12.2012, she was present at railway station to

board train from Sunam to Lehra and accused alongwith his wife was

present there. She proved her ticket (Ex.DW4/A).

Accused also examined his wife Sarabjit Kaur (DW5), who

stated that they were present at railway station at 11:15/11:30 AM on

31.12.2012 and they had returned to village Namol at about 2:30 PM after

making some household purchase from market at Sunam. She also stated

that her husband is innocent. Due to party faction in village, Charanjit

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Singh, Ex. Sarpanch, is a close friend of Master Data Singh. She stated that

when Charanjit Singh was Sarpanch, she was also a member panchayat and

they were opposite to each other. She claims that this case has been got

registered at the instance of Charanjit Singh and Data Singh. The

complainant party are very poor persons and are playing to the tunes of

Charanjit Singh and Data Singh. She further stated that she had moved an

application (Ex.DW2/A) to the higher authorities for inquiry.

Now, when prosecution and defence version is examined, it

comes out that as per statement of Chet Singh, accused called prosecutrix at

his residence at 12 Noon on 31.12.2012. Prosecutrix in her statement

(Ex.PC) stated that she had gone to house of accused, which is situated at a

distance of 2-3 houses from her house for checking practical of mathematics.

She had reached there at 12 O’ clock. The incident was disclosed by

prosecutrix to her parents on 12.2.2013 i.e. after 1 month and 13 days of

occurrence. Therefore, on the day of alleged occurrence, it was not known to

anybody that crime has been committed, nor any criminal action was

contemplated against accused. Assuming that complainant is an illiterate

person and prosecutrix is semi illiterate person, this Court can take the time

of occurrence 15 minutes prior to occurrence i.e. 11:45 AM and 15 minutes

after the occurrence i.e. 12:15 PM. Further, giving more allowance, half an

hour before occurrence i.e. 11:30 AM and half and hour after occurrence i.e.

12:30 PM, i.e. between 11:30 AM to 12:30 PM.

We have carefully examined photostat copies of railway

booking forms (Ex.DW1/A to Ex.DW1/C). The first form (Ex.DW1/A) was

filled in at 11:30 AM on 31.12.2012. There is specific column in reservation

form for mentioning telephone number, date and time. The reservation form

filled in on 31.12.2012 for return journey on 12.2.2013 from Kishanganj to

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Ambala of train number 15903 and onward journey on 9.2.2013 from Jakhal

to Kishanganj, of train number 15610. The form indicates the ticket

number issued against said form. The journey from Kishanganj to Ambala is

for two persons, namely, Gurjant Singh and his daughter Navreet Kaur and

journey on 9.2.2013, is for one person i.e. Gurjant Singh.

Now, another form filled in at 12:01 PM shows that Gurjant

Singh again booked a ticket for return journey on train number 12505 from

Kishanganj to Anand Vihar. This ticket is also for two persons, namely,

Gurjant Singh and Navreet Kaur, for sleeper class. The subsequent

cancellation form Ex.DW1/C, filled in at 12:03 PM shows that first ticket on

train number 15903 at 12:03 PM for Gurjant Singh and Navreet Kaur was

got cancelled, for which refund was given. As per these forms, Gurjant

Singh is stated to be present at Sunam railway station on 31.12.2012 till

12.03 PM when he filled in the form.

Now, the plea of State is that these forms could have been

signed by somebody else.

As discussed above, since no criminal action was contemplated

against accused on 31.12.2012 at 11:30 AM, therefore, it is unlikely that he

will try to create evidence for going to Kishanganj on 9.2.2013 to bring her

daughter back, who is doing MBBS at Kishanganj, Bihar and come back on

12.2.2013. The presence of accused is further acknowledged from the fact

that after having booked the first ticket (Ex.DW1/A), he cancelled said ticket

from Kishanganj to Ambala. He booked another ticket for 12.2.2013 from

Kishanganj to Anand Vihar after half an hour on same day at 12:01 PM. If

the ticket is to be cancelled and refund is taken, the person booking the

ticket has to be present at railway station to cancel first ticket and fill in the

cancellation form and then collect refund. All the forms Ex. DW1/A to

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Ex. DW1/C are in same handwriting indicating presence of accused at

Railway Station, Sunam. Assuming that accused had his own personal

vehicle, it has come in evidence of complainant that village Namol is at a

distance of 8 kilometers from Railway Station Sunam. Therefore, it would

take minimum about 10/15 minutes to reach from village Namol to Railway

Station Sunam, which means that accused must have left his village latest by

11:15 AM to go to Railway Station Sunam.

Accused has given his mobile number in the booking form,

which belongs to him. Now, call details of accused (ExDW3/C) shows that

he made a call from his mobile number 94630-05476 to mobile number

08987254012 on 31.12.2012 at 11:30 AM. The location of tower is Indra

Marg, Sunam. The call was made after filling in first form at 11:30 AM.

The duration of first call was 60 seconds. Then, he received a call at same

number from his daughter’s mobile at 11.42.30 AM at the same location.

The duration of second call is 1 second which appears to be a missed call.

Then, accused made a call from his mobile number 94630-05476 to same

mobile number 08987254012, belonging to his daughter staying in

Kishanganj, Bihar, at 11.42.53 AM. The duration was 51 seconds. The

location of said call was same i.e. Indra Marg, Sunam. It was after the said

conversation at 11.42.53 AM that the second form was filled in wherein

train number was changed for back journey from Kishanganj for accused and

his daughter Navreet Kaur.

The learned senior defence counsel has argued that after taking

first ticket, accused made a call to his daughter, who then informed him

about her difficulty of some practical. Thereafter, he had to change his ticket

and train number for back journey from Kishanganj. Thereafter, he filled in

another form for cancellation of back journey ticket from Kishanganj to

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Ambala at 12:03 PM on 31.12.2012 and fill in refund form for same in his

own handwriting. Then, another call was made by accused to abovenoted

mobile number of his daughter at 12.26.24. This time, duration of call is for

117 seconds and location is same i.e. Indra Marg, Sunam. This indicates that

after making claim booking at 12:03 PM, accused had a bit detailed talk with

his daughter from same location, which indicates that from 11.38.24 to

12.26.24, accused was present at Railway Station Sunam, which is duly

corroborated by reservation/cancellation forms, as claimed by him. Further,

another call by accused on the mobile number of his daughter was made at

12.56.54 PM for 62 seconds. This time, location of tower was Sunam TE

Sunam and then, another call was made by accused to same mobile number

of his daughter at 14.26.39 PM. This time, tower location was of Namol,

Sunam, Sangrur, which means that sometime between 12.56.54 to 14.26.39,

accused reached his village Namol.

The complainant and prosecutrix are very categorical that

prosecutrix had visited house of accused at 12:00 noon and thereafter the

accused had committed rape. It is not case of prosecution wherein

approximate time of noon is given. The most important evidence in this

case is the practical book, on which accused put his initial and date. It was

not taken into possession by police, which could show that on the said date,

prosecutrix had visit house of accused for the purpose of checking of her

practical book.

Smt. Sarabjit Kaur, wife of accused, has appeared as DW5 in

witness box to state that she is living with her husband and that on that day

i.e. 31.12.2012, they had gone to Sunam railway station. They had left their

village Namol at 10:45 AM and reached railway station at 11:15/11:30 AM.

They remained at railway station for more than one hour and then came to

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Indra Market of Sunam and then, returned to village at about 2:30 PM. She

further stated that her husband had left village Namol on 8.2.2013 for

Kishanganj, to bring back their daughter.

The statement of principal of school Parmajit Singh shows that

accused had taken leave from 11.2.2013 to 14.2.2013. Principal had

admitted that daughter of accused is MBBS student at Kishanganj, Bihar.

The leave application duly signed by principal is on file (Ex.DX). Leave

was sanctioned for four days though, it is also recorded that it was cancelled

on 13.2.2013 apparently as a case was registered against accused.

From the evidence, as discussed above, it comes out that

accused was not present in village Namol, at least from 11:15 AM to 1:15

PM on the day of occurrence. The time could also be little before 11:15 AM

to sometime later than 1:15 PM. The stamped evidence of mobile phone

when read together with railway booking and cancellation form shows that

accused was at Sunam railway station, which is 8 kilometers away from his

village at 11:30 AM on 31.12.2012 and was present in Sunam at 12.56.54

PM. It is also to be noted that it takes sometime to fill in reservation form

and it also takes time to fill in second form for reservation and then, fill in

refund form and then collect the refund from railways. Therefore,

prosecution story that rape was committed upon prosecutrix sometime

immediately after 12 noon on 31.12.2012 stands shattered by defence

evidence. Further, medical evidence shows that even prosecutrix had

indulged in sexual intercourse 48 hours before 13.2.2013 when she was

medico legally examined. There are no allegations that even sometime

before 13.2.2013, accused had again committed rape upon prosecutrix.

There is only single allegation of rape i.e. on 31.12.2012 sometime

immediately after 12 noon.

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It is also important to note that wife of accused was a member

panchayat in the years 2003 to 2008 and one Charanjit Singh was the

Sarpanch. Charanjit Singh, Ex Sarpanch, was the persons, who alongwith

Data Singh, uncle of prosecutrix, held dharnas for pressing registration of

case. Therefore, it appears that dharnas were held sometime before

12.2.2013, at least for some days. One of such dharna was held at Sangrur,

as admitted by prosecutrix. Thereafter, police swung into action. Therefore,

the case appears to have been registered to pacify the public. Under such

circumstances, the evidence claimed by defence took a back seat and the trial

Court also failed to critically examine the prosecution and defence version to

find out as to whether crime was committed, as alleged. We are of the firm

view that since accused was not present in village at or around the time of

crime and was present with his wife at Railway Station Sunam, therefore, he

could not commit the crime at the time, as alleged by prosecutrix.

As a result of foregoing discussion, conviction of accused

cannot be sustained in eye of law. Accordingly, present appeal is allowed.

Consequently, accused is acquitted of the charges framed against him. He be

released forthwith, if not required in any other case. The fine, if paid by

appellant, be refunded to him.

(A.B. CHAUDHARI) (KULDIP SINGH)
JUDGE JUDGE

23.8.2018
sjks

Whether speaking / reasoned : Yes / No

Whether Reportable : Yes / No

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