IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE AT MADRAS
THE HON’BLE Mr.JUSTICE M. DHANDAPANI
Crl.A.No.87 of 2008
Srinivasan … Appellant
State Represented by
Inspector of Police,
Central Police Station,
Crime No.27 of 2006 … Respondent
PRAYER: Criminal Appeal filed under Section 374 (2) of the Code of
Criminal Procedure against the Judgment dated 11.01.2008 passed in
S.C.No.280 of 2006 by the learned District Judge, Mahila Court,
For Appellant … Mr.H.Maruthiraj
Legal Aid Counsel
For Respondent … Mr.R.Ravichandran,
Government Advocate (Crl. Side)
This Criminal Appeal has been filed by the Appellant – sole
accused in S.C.No.280 of 2006 on the file of the learned District Judge,
Mahila Court, Coimbatore.
2.Brief facts of the prosecution case are as follows:
The accused and the deceased Umamaheswari are the husband
and wife. This is the second marriage for the deceased and earlier, she
married and got divorced. P.Ws.1 2 are parents of the deceased.
P.W.5 is the sister and P.Ws.9 10 are brothers of the deceased. After
marriage, the accused and the deceased were residing in a separate
house, at Coimbatore. Marriage of the accused and the deceased was
arranged by the parents of their respective family and it was
performed at family temple of the deceased, viz., Angala
Parameshwari Amman Temple. At the time of marriage, P.Ws.1 2
gave 30 sovereigns gold jewels and Rs.3,00,000/- as sridhana.
Initially, they started their matrimonial life in Pollachi. Immediately
after marriage, appellant demanded huge money from the deceased in
order to develop his business. Due to intolerable torture from the
appellant, the deceased gave 20 Sovereigns gold jewels and paid
Rs.2,20,000/- to him. Further, she kept the balance amount of
Rs.92,000/- for her delivery expenses, since, the deceased was
pregnant at the time of occurrence. However, on 18.01.2006, the
appellant left the deceased in her parents house and demanded some
amount to take lease of one house in Pollachi. But, the deceased
denied to give the amount and informed that she need the balance
amount for her delivery purpose. The appellant threatened the
deceased that he will murder her. Again on 19.01.2006, appellant
came to P.W.1’s house and attacked the deceased. Hence, P.W.1
taken the deceased to the hospital in Pollachi, there, the deceased was
admitted as in-patient for two days. In hospital also, the appellant
demanded money and attacked the deceased. Further, on
20.02.2006, he voluntarily discharged the deceased from hospital and
taken the deceased along with him to his house at Coimbatore, by
leaving the parents of the deceased in hospital itself. Thereafter, on
21.02.2006, at around 12.30 pm, parents of the deceased received the
information through phone, that her daughter committed suicide by
3.Immediately, P.Ws.1 and 2 rushed to the place of occurrence
and thereafter approached the respondent police and lodged a
complaint on 21.02.2006. P.W.12, Medical Officer, attached with
Government Hospital, Coimbatore, who conducted post mortem and
issued post mortem certificate, marked as Ex.P.9, reveals that the
deceased died due to hanging herself. However, it is declared that the
deceased had some external injuries all over the body.
4.Initially, P.W.15, the Sub-Inspector of Police received a
complaint, Ex.P.1, from P.W.1 and registered a case in Crime No.27 of
2006 under Section 304B IPC and she forwarded the FIR, Ex.P.13 to
the Revenue Division Officer and other higher officials in Police
Department. Further, the Investigating Officer took up the case for
investigation, went to the place of occurrence and prepared an
Observation Mahazar (Ex.P.2), Seizer Mahazar (Ex.P.3), Rough Sketch
(Ex.P.14) and M.O’s.1 and 2. He also conducted inquest over the dead
body of the deceased in the presence of the witnesses and issued
inquest report (Ex.P.11). After examining the Medical Officer and
other witnesses, the Investigating Officer has laid final report against
the accused for the offences under Section 498A and 304B IPC.
5.On the basis of the above materials, the trial Court framed
charges for the offences under Section 498A and 304B IPC against the
6.In order to prove the charges, on the side of the prosecution,
P.Ws.1 to 16 were examined; Exs.P.1 to 15 were marked; M.O’s.1 and
2 were marked and on the side of the defence D.W’s.1 to 6 were
examined and Exs.D.1 to 18 were marked.
7.When the trial Court examined the accused under Section
313 Cr.P.C, in respect of the incriminating evidences available against
him, he denied his complicity in the crime and pleaded innocence.
However, the defence counsel has made a submission that the
deceased committed suicide, since, there was a loss in the business
run by her. Further, the accused/appellant is in no way connected to
the suicide committed by the deceased. Further, the defence counsel
strongly denied the allegations made in the suicidal note, wrote by the
deceased, before committing suicide.
8.The trial Court after considering the oral and documentary
evidence, has found the accused guilty under Section 498A IPC and
accordingly convicted the accused under Section 498A IPC and
sentenced him to undergo three years Rigorous Imprisonment with
fine of Rs.5,000/- in default to undergo three months Rigorous
Imprisonment. The trial Court however, has not convicted the accused
for offence under Section 304B I.P.C.
9.Challenging the said conviction and sentence, the
appellant/accused has come up with this appeal.
10.Heard the learned counsel for the appellant and the learned
Government Advocate (Criminal Side) appearing for the respondent.
11.The learned counsel appearing for the appellant/accused
would contend that there is no material whatsoever available on record
to prove the charges under Section 498A against the accused. Ex.P.1
is totally contradictory to the evidences of P.Ws.1, 2, 5, 9 and 10.
Admittedly, the deceased committed suicide by hanging herself in her
husband’s house. In the absence of any cruelty or coercion,
implicating the accused under Section 498A is an unlawful act.
However, the trial Court erred in believing the witnesses and
convicting the accused under Section 498A. Hence, he prayed for
acquittal of the accused.
12.Per contra, the learned Government Advocate (Criminal
Side) would submit that P.Ws.1 and 2, parents of the deceased have
clearly spoken about the quarrel and harassment made by the
accused/appellant against the deceased and clearly deposed that the
accused/appellant harassed the deceased by demanding money for the
purpose to lease out an house in Pollachi, which lead the deceased to
commit suicide. Further, the deceased was 8 months pregnant at the
time of suicide. Hence, the Judgment of the trial Court need not be
13.In the light of the above submissions, now, it has to be
analyzed, whether the prosecution has proved the guilt of the accused
beyond all reasonable doubt ?.
14.The evidence of P.W.1, father of the deceased clearly
indicate that the deceased was residing initially at Coimbatore,
thereafter, they shifted their residence in Pollachi. At the time first
marriage, 30 sovereigns of gold jewels and Rs.3 lakhs were given to
the deceased as sridhana. Thereafter, the said marriage was dissolved
and the sridhana amount was collected from the first husband of the
deceased and thereafter, the said 30 sovereigns of gold and Rs.3 lakhs
were used for the second marriage of the deceased. After, the said
marriage was performed at the family temple of P.W’s.1 and 2, the
appellant/accused demanded huge sum of money from the deceased
and accordingly, received Rs.2,20,000/- and 20 sovereigns of gold
jewels from the deceased for the purpose of leasing out the house and
for his business development. Though, the first child was born and
died, the deceased was pregnant at the time of occurrence and due to
the torture of the appellant/accused, P.Ws.1 and 2 admitted the
deceased in hospital. However, by force, the appellant discharged the
deceased and brought her along with him to Coimbatore.
Immediately, on the next day, i.e., on 21.02.2006, the parents of the
deceased received the information that her daughter passed away, by
hanging herself in her husband’s house.
15.Further, the evidence of prosecution witnesses, would
clearly corroborate with each other and in fact P.W.5, in her evidence
has clearly spoken about the cruelty leveled against the deceased.
P.Ws.9 and 10, who are the brothers of the deceased and also
partners in the business of the accused/appellant have clearly deposed
that they were stayed at the deceased house for few months and at
that time, the appellant continuously tortured the deceased for want of
16.Admittedly, prior to the commission of suicide, the deceased
was admitted in Thirumalai hospital by her parents. In hospital also
the appellant attacked the deceased and voluntarily discharged her
from hospital and taken her to Coimbatore. On the very next day, the
appellant informed that the deceased committed suicide by hanging
17.On perusal of P.Ws.1 and 2 evidence, who were present at
the hospital, even when they refused to discharge the deceased from
hospital, the appellant, by force, discharged the deceased from
Thirumalai hospital and taken her along with him.
18.Per contra, on perusal of the defence evidences, all the
witnesses have spoken about the business run by the deceased and its
loss. However, no witness can able to point out the defence theory,
that the business run by the deceased went into loss. Moreover,
because of the business loss, the deceased committed suicide, is not
reliable. However, no document is available to prove the defence
theory and all the evidences produced by the defence side, indicates
only the business run by the deceased along with D.W.5 and other
documents are registration of Certificate, un-registered partnership
between the deceased and D.W.5. Further, some medical records are
available in respect of the deceased. However, based on the same,
this Court cannot come to the conclusion, that the deceased
committed suicide due to business loss. P.Ws.1, 2, 5, 9 and 10 clearly
corroborates each other and P.Ws.14 and 16 also endorse the
evidence of the parents of the deceased.
19.Though, there is a suicide note available in this case, the
same was sent for expert opinion and it reveals that the signature
contained in the suicidal note is of the signature of the deceased.
However, the trial Court not believed the suicide note and arrived at a
conclusion with the evidences of P.Ws.1 and 2 and implicating the
accused in the above said crime. Yet another information available in
the suicide note is that the appellant/accused had illegal intimacy with
20.Thus, I am of the considered view, that the prosecution has
proved the case beyond all reasonable doubt and the Judgment of the
trial Court need not be interfered with. Further, the prosecution
witnesses viz., P.Ws.1 and 2 clearly corroborated with each other and
proved the prosecution case.
21.In the result, the Criminal Appeal stands dismissed.
Judgment dated 11.01.2008 passed in S.C.No.280 of 2006 by the
learned District Judge, Mahila Court, Coimbatore, is hereby confirmed.
The trial Court is directed to secure the presence of the
accused/appellant to undergo the remaining period of sentence, if any.
Index : Yes / No
Internet : Yes / No
1.The District Judge,
Mahila Court, Coimbatore.
2.The Public Prosecutor
High Court of Madras.
3.The Section Officer
Criminal Side, High Court of Madras.
4.The Inspector of Police,
Central Police Station,
M. DHANDAPANI. J,
Crl.A.No.87 of 2008