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Jasbir Singh Johal And Anr vs State Of Punjab And Anr on 31 October, 2018

CRR-3181-2016 (OM) 1

IN THE HIGH COURT FOR THE STATES OF PUNJAB AND
HARYANA AT CHANDIGARH

CRR-3181-2016 (OM)

Date of Decision: October 31, 2018

Jasbir Singh and another
Petitioners

Versus

State of Punjab and another …Respondent(s)

CORAM:- HON’BLE MS. JUSTICE JAISHREE THAKUR

Present:- Mr. Amardeep Singh Gill, Advocate
for the petitioner.

Ms. Rajni Gupta, Sr. DAG, Punjab

Mr. S.K.Bawa, Advocate
for respondent No.2.
****

JAISHREE THAKUR, J. (Oral)

This is a civil revision petition that has been filed seeking to

challenge the order dated 04.06.2016, by which the Additional Sessions

Judge, Jalandhar has allowed the application of the complainant- Rajbir

Kaur to record her evidence through video conferencing.

In brief, the facts of the case are that Rajbir Kaur (a resident of

Australia) solemnized marriage with Karamvir Singh, however the marriage

did not survive for any length of time, the complainant-Rajbir Kaur initiated

a case under the Domestic and Family Violence Act, 1989 and sought a

protection order from her husband Karamvir Singh. An FIR was also

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CRR-3181-2016 (OM) 2

registered at Police Station Goraya, District Jalandhar city bearing FIR

No.35 dated 09.03.2012 under Sections 406, 498A of Indian Penal Code

alleging that her marriage had been performed in India on 21.03.2009 and at

the time of marriage her parents had given sufficient dowry as per their

capacity and financial status. Details of the dowry given as well as the

marriage expenditure were detailed in the FIR. Details of the harassment

meted out to her were also specified in the FIR. Eventually a decree of

divorce was obtained between the parties on 12.09.2013. In the proceedings

that had been initiated under the aforesaid FIR, the complainant moved an

application for having her statement recorded through video conference,

which application was dismissed by the JMIC, Jalandhar vide order dated

12.12.2014. Being aggrieved by the order dated 12.12.2014, the

complainant filed a revision petition before the Sessions Judge, Jalandhar

which was allowed by the Additional Sessions Judge, Jalandhar. Aggrieved

by the said order, the petitioner herein has filed the instant petition

challenging the order dated 04.06.2016 passed by the Additional Sessions

Judge, Jalandhar.

Learned counsel appearing on behalf of the petitioner

contends that the allegations as set out in the FIR are totally incorrect and he

has been falsely implicated in the said case. It is further contended that

from the very beginning the attitude of the complainant was stubborn and

non-cooperative and only to harass the petitioner and his family members

that the present FIR is being proceeded under. It is argued that charges have

been framed but the complainant is not coming forth to have her statement

recorded. It is further argued that no cogent reasons have been made as to

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why the complainant cannot travel to India. It is also argued that the

petitioner herein has not created any hindrance in her travel as put forth in

the application seeking evidence to be recorded through video conference.

Per contra learned counsel appearing on behalf of the

complainant-respondent submits that the complainant has a minor daughter-

Mannat and there is no one else other than herself to look after her daughter

and if she is made to travel to India, the minor child would suffer in her

studies.

I have heard the learned counsel for the parties and have

perused the record and the impugned order.

The Additional Sessions Judge, Jalandhar has allowed the

application of the complainant-applicant by taking note of the fact that the

minor daughter is school going and it would be difficult for the complainant

to leave her alone and travel to India to have her evidence recorded.

Reliance was placed upon judgment rendered by the Apex Court in State of

Maharashtra vs. Dr. Praful B. Desai and another, 2003(2) 434, RCR(crl.)

770 in which it was held that evidence by way of video conference can be

recorded.

“Thus in cases where the witness is necessary for the ends of
justice and the attendance of such witness cannot be procured
without an amount of delay, expense or inconvenience which,
under the circumstances of the case would be unreasonable, the
Court may dispense with such attendance and issue a commission
for examination of the witness. As indicated earlier Dr.
Greenberg has refused to come to India to give evidence. His
evidence appears to be necessary for the ends of Justice. Courts
in India cannot procure his attendance. Even otherwise to
procure attendance of a witness from a far of country like USA

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CRR-3181-2016 (OM) 4

would generally involve delay, expense and/or inconvenience. In
such cases commissions could be issued for recording evidence.
Normally a commission would involve recording evidence at the
place where the witness is. However advancement in science and
technology has now made it possible to record such evidence by
way of video conferencing in the town/city where the Court is.
Thus in cases where the attendance of a witness cannot be
procured without an amount of delay, expense or inconvenience
the Court could consider issuing a commission to record the
evidence by way of video conferencing.”

Once the Apex Court itself has permitted that the evidence can be

recorded through video conference, the only thing remains to be seen is

whether there is any infirmity in the order so passed. Taking into account

the fact that the complainant has a minor child who is school going, it

would definitely cause her certain hardship to travel to India on account of

having to leave the minor child alone or bear the necessary expenditure of

getting a visa and tickets for both. Recording of evidence through video-

conferencing is a recognized method of getting the evidence recorded

hence this hardship can certainly be avoided by allowing the evidence to be

recorded through video conference.

Therefore, I do not find any infirmity in the order dated

04.06.2016 passed by the Additional Sessions Judge, Jalandhar and dismiss

the present revision petition.

Dismissed.

October 31, 2018 (JAISHREE THAKUR)
seema JUDGE

Whether speaking/reasoned Yes
Whether reportable Yes/No

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