Karnataka High Court Manjegowda @ Manu vs The State Of Karnataka on 26 February, 2014Author: Budihal R.B.
IN THE HIGH COURT OF KARNATAKA AT BANGALORE DATED THIS THE 26TH DAY OF FEBRUARY 2014 BEFORE
THE HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE BUDIHAL R.B. CRIMINAL PETITION No.7103/2013
Manjegowda @ Manu,
Aged about 26 years,
R/o. No.151, 8th Main,
Tumkur Dist.-572 227. .. PETITIONER (By Sri. Arun Shyam M, Adv.)
The State of Karnataka,
Police, Bangalore City,
Rep. by its
State Public Prosecutor,
High Court Building,
Bangalore-560 001. .. RESPONDENT (By Sri. K. Nageshwarappa, HCGP)
This criminal petition is filed under Section 439 of the Cr.P.C. praying to enlarge the petitioner on bail in Cr. No.58/2013 of Byatarayanapura P.S., Bangalore City, and in S.C.No.929/13 on the file of the XXIV ACC and S.J., C/C FTC-IV, Bangalore for the offences punishable under Sections 498A, 304B, 302 of IPC.
This petition coming on for Orders this day, the Court made the following :
This petition is filed by the petitioner-accused under Section 439 of Cr.P.C. seeking his release on bail of the offences punishable under Sections 498A, 304B and 302 of IPC registered in respondent Police Station Crime No.58/2013.
2. Brief facts of the case are that Kempalingaiah, father of the deceased Mangalagowri, lodged a complaint stating that, his daughter Mangalagowri had given in marriage to the petitioner on 08.06.2012 at Beeralingeshwara Temple, Kupperi Village. At the time of marriage Gold Mangalyasutra, one gold long chain, one gold necklace and sarees with marriage expenditure were given as dowry. After marriage, the petitioner and the deceased 3
Mangalagowri were residing in Pramod Layout, Bangalore. It is stated that the petitioner owns a car and he is running the said car on rental basis. The complainant further stated that his son and his friends have paid the down payment of Rs.2,76,000/- for the purchase of car. They have also paid first installment of Rs.15,000/- towards the said car. His daughter was working in plastic factory nearby to her house. On 11.02.2013 at about 6:00 p.m., the son of the complainant by name one Shankaralingaiah had called the complainant saying that some incident had happened in Mangalagowri’s home. Immediately, the complainant along with his wife and relatives and well wishers went to his daughter’s house. The police informed the complainant that Mangalagowri’s body had been taken to Victoria Hospital. Immediately, complainant and others went to Byatarayanapura Police Station. The complainant suspects the death of his daughter. On the basis of the said complaint, the case was registered by the respondent police. 4
3. I have heard the learned Counsel appearing for the petitioner-accused and the learned High Court Government Pleader appearing for the respondent-State.
4. Learned Counsel for the petitioner, during the course of the arguments, submitted that the alleged incident took place when the petitioner-husband of the deceased was not present in the house and this is supported by the averment made in the UDR report. The learned Counsel submitted that when C.W.4-Chikkanna informed the control room about smoke coming out from the 3rd floor of Bhaghya building where the deceased was residing, then the police came to third floor and saw the house of the deceased. The door was locked from inside and hence, the police broke the door and saw the dead body of the deceased. It is mentioned that the police also spoken to the husband of the deceased over phone. The learned Counsel submitted that these materials clearly go to show that the petitioner was not present when the incident took place. He submitted that with regard to the demand of dowry by the petitioner and in that connection, giving ill treatment to the deceased is not at 5
all mentioned in the statement of father of the deceased said to have been recorded on 12.2.2013. The learned counsel submitted that the petitioner has been implicated in the case as the incident has taken place in his house. He is innocent and by imposing reasonable conditions, the petitioner may be admitted to bail.
5. As against this, learned High Court Government Pleader appearing for the respondent-State, during the course of the arguments, submitted that the statement of parents of the deceased goes to show that they have given cash and gold ornaments as dowry at the time of marriage of the petitioner with the deceased. He submitted that with regard to dowry amount, the petitioner was ill treating the deceased and in that regard, the investigating officer has also recorded the statement of witnesses who are the neighbourers of the deceased. He submitted that death has taken place within eight months from the date of marriage in the house of the petitioner. He submitted that the said incident goes to show that the petitioner is responsible for 6
the death of the deceased. Hence, he submitted that the petitioner is not entitled for grant of bail.
6. I have perused the averments made in the bail petition and the other materials on record. Initially, UDR was registered on the basis of the information said to have been given by C.W.4 – Chikkannna on 11.2.2013. The materials further go to show that Chikkanna along with police went to house of the deceased. However, the door was locked from inside. They forcibly pushed the door and opened the same. They saw the dead body of a lady that was completely burnt and it was charred. The contents of the UDR further goes to show that there was one mobile phone on the TV and the police spoken to husband of the deceased over the mobile phone and informed about the incident.
7. The police recorded the statement of father of the deceased on 12.2.2013. In the statement, the father of the deceased has mentioned that the petitioner was running car on hire basis and for the said car, his son and his friend Srikanth have paid down payment of Rs.2,76,000/- and they 7
have also paid first month installment of Rs.15,000/-. The other instalments were being paid by the petitioner. It is mentioned that his daughter and son-in-law were leading happy marital life and often, his son and his wife used to go to see the deceased. However, in the last paragraph of the statement, the father of the deceased has mentioned that he does know as to how his daughter caught with fire and as to how the death of his daughter has taken place. But it is mentioned that death of the deceased was pre-planned and the petitioner has set fire to his daughter. The same is also the statement of the mother of the deceased, who has also raised suspicion that the petitioner has set fire to her daughter.
8. I have examined the statement of father of the deceased. In the entire statement, there is no allegation as to the demand of dowry amount by the petitioner and in that connection, he was giving ill treatment to the deceased. On the contrary, it is mentioned that both couple were living happily. Therefore, looking to the materials on record and the fact that the petitioner was not at all present at the spot 8
when the incident has occurred, in my view, the petitioner is entitled for grant of bail. Now the investigation of the case is completed and the charge sheet has been filed. To secure the presence of the petitioner before the trial court, reasonable conditions can be imposed which will safeguard the interest of the prosecution.
9. In the result, the petition is allowed. The petitioner is ordered to be released on bail of the offence punishable under Sections 498A, 304B and 302 of IPC registered in respondent police station Crime No.58/2013, subject to following conditions:-
I. The petitioner shall execute bonds for a sum of Rs.1,00,000/- (Rupees one lakh only) and shall offer a solvent surety for the like sum to the satisfaction of jurisdictional Court.
II. The petitioner shall not intimidate or tamper with prosecution witnesses, directly or indirectly. III. The petitioner shall attend the concerned Court regularly.