(SANTU @ SANTOSH Vs THE STATE OF MADHYA PRADESH)
Shri Pushpendra Dubey, learned counsel for the appellant.
Shri P.K. Chourasia, learned Panel Lawyer, for the respondent-
Application Nos.10039/2017 and 10040/2017 moved on behalf of
the appellant for hearing the matter during the summer vacation
have become infractuous. Hence, they are dismissed as being
Arguments heard on admission of this appeal.
Having gone through the impugned judgment, record of the trial
court and the petition of appeal, I find this appeal is arguable.
Hence, it is admitted for final hearing.
Learned Panel Lawyer has accepted the notice of admission of this
appeal on behalf of the respondent-State. Hence, no further notice
is required to be sent to it.
Heard on I.A. No.9462/2017, which is the first application under
Section 389(1) of the Cr.P.C. moved on behalf of the appellant for
suspension of sentences and grant of bail to him during the
pendency of this appeal.
Vide the impugned judgment dated 18.04.2017 passed by the
Additional Sessions Judge Multai, District Betul in Sessions Trial
No.302/2016 titled State of M.P. through Police Station Multai,
District Betul Vs. Santu @ Santosh, the appellant stands convicted
under Sections 451 and 354 of the IPC and 8 of the Protection of
Children from Sexual Offences Act (for short âthe POCSO
Actâ). However, he stands sentenced R.I. for one year with a
fine of Rs.500/- (five hundred), in default, to suffer further R.I. for
three months under Section 451 IPC and R.I. for four years with a
fine of Rs.25,000/- (twenty five thousand) in default to suffer
further R.I. for six months under Section 8 of the POCSO Act in
view of the provision of Section 42 of the said Act. The substantive
jail sentences in the aforesaid Sections are directed to run
Learned counsel for the appellant submits that the appellant is in
jail since 18.04.2017, the date of impugned judgment. He submits
that this appeal is of the year 2017, therefore, there is no
likelihood of it being heard on merits in recent future. Having
taken this court through the depositions of victim-girl (PW-1), her
mother (PW-3) and her brother (PW-2), he submits that although
they have supported the prosecution case in their examinations-in-
chief, they have resiled from their statements in the cross-
examinations. Having taken this court through the deposition of
victim-girl’s father (PW-4), he submits that he has not supported
the prosecution case and he has been declared hostile. Thus, the
conviction of the appellant in the aforesaid Sections are based
upon erroneous appreciation of evidence. He further submits that
the learned trial Judge has convicted the appellant under Section
354 IPC simpliciter. Hence, the provision of Section 42 of the
POCSO Act is not applicable in the case. Consequently, the learned
trial Judge has committed a legal error in applying the provision of
said Section in the case. He submits that this is the first ever
criminal case registered against the appellant and that he has no
criminal antecedents. Upon these submissions, he prays to allow
Learned Panel Lawyer has opposed acceptance of the I.A.
Having regard to the facts and circumstances of the case and the
submissions raised on behalf of the parties by their counsels and
having gone through the evidence of the aforesaid prosecution
witnesses, but without commenting on merits of the case, I am of
the view that a case is made out for suspension of jail sentences
and grant of bail to the appellant. Therefore, the I.A. is allowed.
The execution of remaining jail sentence of the appellant Santu @
Santosh is hereby suspended and the trial court is ordered to
release him on bail upon his furnishing a personal bond in the sum
of Rs.40,000/- (forty thousand) with one solvent surety of the
same amount to its satisfaction, subject to depositing the fine
sentence at the time of furnishing bail-bonds, if any.
The appellant shall appear before the Registry of this Court to
mark his presence first time on 18.01.2018 and thereafter on all
such other dates as may be fixed by it in this regard until further
orders of this Court.
List the case for final hearing in due course.
Certified copy as per rules.