Bombay High Court State Of Maharashtra-vs-Sahebrao And Ors. on 28 July, 2004
Equivalent citations:II (2005) DMC 777
Author: P Brahme
Bench: P Brahme
P.S. Brahme, J.
1. This appeal is against the judgment and order dated 25.10.1990, whereunder respondents were acquitted of offences punishable under Sections 306, 498A and 304B read with Section 34 of the Indian Penal Code, in Sessions Case No. 91/89, by Additional Sessions Judge, Buldhana.
2. The prosecution against the respondents arises out of suicidal death of victim Sandhya in the morning of 5.6.1989. The victim Sandhya was daughter of witness Kisanrao Deshmukh (PW 7) and Shashikala (PW 3). She was married to respondent Vilas on 10th March, 1988. The respondent Sahebrao Deshmukh and his wife Leelabai Deshmukh are parents of respondent Vilas. The witness Vijay (PW 5 and Sanjay PW 6) are sons of Kisanrao Deshmukh, The victim’s elder sister Sheela was given in marriage to elder brother of Vilas. Their marriage took place some 8 to 10 years back. After marriage Sandhya came to reside in matrimonial home with her husband Vilas. Respondent Vilas has a small stationery shop at Buldhana near S.T. Bus Stand. Sandhya lived in matrimonial home for 13 months. Her sister Sheela was also residing in the same house with their parents-in-law. During the span of 13 months Sandhya had visited her parental house on two occasions only. Firstly, she had come in intercollery month and lastly in Diwali Festival of 1988 i.e. in or about October, 1988. In her last visit she complained about ill-treatment to her at the hands of respondents and also conveyed message to her parents of demand of amount in the form of dowry.
3. The witness Vijay, Sandhya’s brother, visited Sandhya’s house on 3.6.1989. He halted there on 3rd and also on the night of 4th June, 1989. He claimed that during his stay, his sister Sandhya expressed him that she wanted to come with him to their parental house at Deulgaon Raja. In the morning at about 5.30 a.m. on 5.6.1989 Subhash went to the terrace of the house where Vijay was sleeping and after awakening him, told that one yourg Baby was lying in the field. Immediately Subhash and Vijay ran towards the field and on reaching there Vijay found that the girl lying was his sister deceased Sandhya. In the mean-time police arrived there at about 8.00 a.m. and statement of Vijay was recorded. It is pertinent to note that Vijay did not complain anything against respondents when his statement was recorded. On the contrary, for Sandhya’s suicidal death he put blame on her because of her eccentric nature. Then by that time, parents of Sandhya were informed about the death of Sandhya, and therefore Kisanrao and some members of his family including his wife immediately rushed to village Yelgaon where Sandhya was residing and there they came to know that their daughter Sandhya had expired and her dead body was removed to Civil Hospital, Buldhana for post-mortem. Thereafter, they all came to Buldhana Civil Hospital and saw the dead body of Sandhya. They noticed some injuries on her body. The Medical Officer carried out autopsy on the dead body of Sandhya and prepared postmortem Note (Exh. 49). Exact cause of death could not be opined. However, probable cause was pulmonary oedena due to insecticide poisoning. That came to be confirmed after having received the report of C.A. in respect of viscera vide Exh. 36 in which the result of detection of organo-phospherous insecticide. Phosphine are positive that is why doctor Dilip Kulkarni (PW 4) who conducted autopsy stated in his evidence that the cause of death must have been due to organo-phospherous insecticide poison. The Medical Officer, when conducted autopsy on the dead body of Sandhya, noticed external injuries on her body which he noted in the post-mortem note (Exh. 39). In his evidence he has stated that injury Nos. 2, 3 and 4 were post mortem in nature while injury Nos. 1, 5 and 6 were ante mortem and these injuries might have been caused within 24 hours.
4. The relatives of Sandhya including her parents, after coming to Buldhana, visited Civil Hospital to see dead body of Sandhya. They also noticed injuries on her body. Then on the same day in the evening at about 7.00 p.m. Kisanrao went to Police Station where his statement was recorded. Accordingly, police registered offence under Sections 302, 304B, read with Section 34 of the Indian Penal Code. Again on 6.6.1989, parents and brother of Sandhya came to Buldhana to give statement to police. Accordingly, their statements were recorded. Kisanrao gave his statement to the effect that his daughter Sandhya must have been murdered by the respondents.
5. It is matter of record that witness Shiduba Patil (PW 1), who was then Police Patil of village Yelgaon, gave report (Exh. 39) reporting accidental death of Sandhya to Police Station Officer, Police Station, Buldhana. On that report Police Station Officer registered accidental death. It was investigated by P.S.I. Mohan Jadhav (P.W.8). He visited the place of occurrence and prepared spot Panchanama, as also inquest Panchanama of the dead body and sent dead body of Sandhya for