THE HIGH COURT OF DELHI will hold examination for direct recruitment against 14 vacancies to Delhi Higher Judicial Service on Sunday, the 06th April,2014-Last Date 06.02.2014 13/11/2013: While renewing the term of the appointment of the existing incumbents the State Government is required to consider their past performance and conduct in the light of the recommendations made by the District Judges and the District Magistrates. Therefore, the High Court could not have issued a Mandamus for renewal of the term of respondent Nos. 1 and 2 and other similarly situated persons and thereby frustrated the provisions of LR Manual and Section 24 Cr.P.C .- SUPREME COURT. 12 Nov. 2013- Registration of FIR by police in cognizable offence is must and action must be taken against officials for not lodging a case on the complaint filed in such offences.- Supreme Court.(PTI) 09/11/2013: Supreme Court stayed Gauhati High Court order that declared CBI as unconstitutional. 06-11-2013 -"while we decline to hold and declare that the DSPE Act, 1946, is not a valid piece of legislation, we do hold that the CBI is neither an organ nor a part of the DSPE and the CBI cannot be treated as a ‘police force’ constituted under the DSPE Act, 1946"-GUWAHATI HIGH COURT
SUPREME COURT OF INDIA JUDGEMENTS
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P. SATHASIVAM & H.L. DATTU JJ.
 
Judgement Dated:2/8/2010 12:00:00 AM
 
Head Note: Death Penalty when to be awarded : Supreme Court
 
Judgement:
                   JUDGMENT P. Sathasivam, J. 1) This appeal is filed on behalf of the appellants through the Jailor, District Jail, Sitapur, U.P. against the impugned judgment dated 03.03.2006 passed by the High Court of Judicature at Allahabad, Lucknow Bench, Lucknow, in Criminal Reference No. 2 of 2005 and Criminal Appeal No. 713 of 2005 whereby the High Court allowed Criminal Reference No.2 of 2005 filed by the State confirming the death sentence awarded to the appellants 1 herein and dismissed Criminal Appeal No. 713 of 2005 filed by the appellants herein. 2) The prosecution case is as under: (a) On the fateful night of 21.12.1995 when Shiv Ratan, Nanhakey, Ram Kishore and Sushil were irrigating their fields in the northern side of the village from the tubewell of Sundari, widow of Jai Narain, at about 8.30 p.m., eight miscreants armed with guns reached the spot. A boy and two girls were also with them. All the miscreants caught hold of the four persons who were irrigating their fields and enquired about their properties and made a demand of Rs.10,000/- each and threatened that otherwise they would be killed. At the very moment, Harnam, Ganga Dai, Chhotakey s/o Gaya Ram and Hari Kumar Tripathi who were returning home after irrigating their fields were also stopped by the miscreants demanding Rs.10,000/- each from them. When all of them expressed their inability to pay the money, the miscreants assaulted Sushil, Shiv Ratan and Harnam by butt of the gun and took away Hari 2 Kumar Tripathi, Nanhakey, Ram Kishore @ Chottakey Naney, Chhotakkey and Ganga Dai towards western side of tubewell leaving Sushil, Shiv Ratan and Harnam directing them to bring money otherwise they would be killed. These three persons returned to the village and informed the villagers about the incident and by the time the villagers reached near the field, the miscreants had taken away all the five abducted persons along with them. Due to the night and being afraid of the miscreants, the villagers could not lodge a complaint immediately. On the very next day i.e. 22.12.1995 at 6.10 a.m., a complaint was lodged at P.S. Sandana, Dist. Sitapur and a case was registered and the investigation was commenced for searching the abducted persons. At about 25 mts. away from the tubewell in the sugar cane field of Laltu, the dead body of Hari Kumar Tripathi was recovered and the dead bodies of Nanhakey, Ram Kishore @ Chottakey Naney, Chhotakkey and Ganga Dai were found in the Arhar field at a distance of 1 km. from the tubewell. After recovery of 3 the dead bodies, they were sent for post-mortem. After recording the statements, S.H.O. Ram Shankar Singh arrested Mulla and Guddu on 01.01.1996 and Tula on 08.01.1996 and recovered a countrymade gun, two cartridges and one knife. (b) After completion of investigation, charge sheet was filed against Mulla, Guddu, Tula and Asha Ram. The accused persons were produced in the Court of Judicial Magistrate, First Class, Sitapur. Before committal of the case, the Judicial Magistrate vide his order dated 19.11.1996, separating the case of accused Asha Ram committed the case to the Additional Sessions Judge, Sitapur for trial vide his order dated 03.03.1997. During the trial, since accused Tula was absent, his case was separated. By order dated 30.4.2005, the trial Court convicted Mulla and Guddu under Section 365 IPC and sentenced them to undergo R.I. for 7 years and a fine of Rs.1000/- each and in default of payment of fine further simple imprisonment for one year. The appellants herein 4 were also convicted under Section 148 IPC and sentenced to undergo R.I. for 3 years. They were further convicted under Section 302 read with Section 149 IPC and sentenced to death. (c) Challenging the said judgment, Guddu filed Crl. A. No. 698 of 2005 and Mulla filed Crl. A. No. 701 of 2005 before the High Court from Jail and both of them jointly filed Crl.A. No.713 of 2005 through counsel. The High Court, vide order dated 03.03.2006, confirming the death sentence imposed on the appellants dismissed the appeals filed by both the appellants. Aggrieved by the said judgment, both the accused persons filed this appeal through the Jailor, Distt. Sitapur, U.P. On 14.7.2006, this Court issued notice and on 21.7.2006, stayed the execution of death sentence pending further orders. 3) We heard Ms. Ranjana Narayan, learned amicus curiae for the appellants and Mr. Pramod Swaroop, learned senior counsel for the respondent-State. 5 4) After taking us through the relevant materials relied on by the prosecution, Ms Ranjana Narayan, learned amicus curiae raised the following contentions: a) No eye-witness to the alleged incident; b) Accused persons are not named in the FIR. In other words, FIR was lodged against unknown persons; c) delay in conducting the Test Identification Parade (TIP); d) Prosecution failed to establish motive for the incident; e) In any event, even if the Court accepts the prosecution case, imposition of death sentence is not warranted. 5) Mr. Pramod Swaroop, learned senior counsel for the State of U.P. while disputing all the above contentions pointed out that a) though the FIR was registered against unknown persons, by proper investigation and examining the persons who witnessed the occurrence, the prosecution proved its charge b) PWs 1, 2 and 3 were present at the place of occurrence and in the absence of 6 any contradiction in their statements, the Courts below have rightly relied on and accepted their version c) PWs 2 and 3 identified Mulla and Guddu in the test identification parade which was conducted in accordance with the procedure d) the evidence of PW 4 is more probable and acceptable in view of the fact that she being a victim at the hands of the miscreants including the appellants, the Courts below have rightly relied on her statement e) all the miscreants were armed with illegal guns in their hands and came to the spot along with a boy and two girls demanding ransom, f) inasmuch as the appellants- accused killed five persons including a woman, all between the age of 25-50 mercilessly, the award of capital punishment is justified and no interference called for by this Court. 6) We have carefully perused the entire records including depositions and documents and considered the rival contentions. 7 7) The prosecution mainly relied on the evidence of PW 1 - Rajesh Kumar Tripathi, PW 2 - Sushil, PW 3 -Harnam, independent eye witness - PW 4 - Kiran, PW 5 - Dr. A.K. Verma-Post Mortem Doctor, PW 7 - Dr. Sudarshan, who treated the injured witness, PW 8 - S.I. - Ram Kripal Bharati, PW 9 - Sub-inspector of Police, PW 11 Vijay Kumar Verma, an officer who accompanied and assisted the Magistrate in conducting the test identification parade and one Rajni Kant Mishra, the then Reader, as a court witness (CW 1). No one was examined on the side of the accused as defence witness. 8) It is true that either in the complaint or in the first information report, no one was specifically named for the commission of offence. In other words, the accused persons are not named in the FIR and it merely mentions `unknown persons. Though a suggestion was made to prosecution witnesses that the accused persons are from the nearby villages, the same was stoutly denied and in such circumstance, miscreants being outsiders, it would 8 not be possible to name those persons in the complaint itself without further verification. On the other hand, the prosecution through their witnesses particularly, PWs 1 to 4, established that it was the appellants, who along with few more persons committed the offence by killing five persons mercilessly for non-payment of ransom amount which they demanded for the release of five persons caught hold by them. In view of the same, though none was named in the FIR, subsequently, the name of the appellants came into light during investigation. 9) Rajesh Kumar Tripathi who made the complaint-Ex. Ka-1 was examined as PW 1. He was examined on 09.04.2001 and narrated that on the night of the incident, namely, on 21.12.1995 nearly at about 8.30 p.m. in the north of his land, Shiv Ratan, Ram Kishore @ Nanhakkey Naney, Nanhakkey and Sushil were watering their respective fields from the tubewell of Sundari, widow of Jai Narain. At that very moment, eight miscreants, armed with guns, reached there. They also had two girls and a 9 boy with them. One by one, they caught hold of all the four persons and enquired them about their lands and threatened to kill them if they failed to bring Rs.10,000/- each. He further narrated that in the meantime, Harnam, Ganga Dai, Chhotakkey and Hari Kumar Tripathi, all from his village who were returning their home after watering their fields were also stopped by the miscreants. He also reached the spot. The miscreants were flashing their torches. The accused made all those persons to sit and asked to bring Rs.10,000/- each. When they replied that they are poor and wherefrom they would bring money to give them, all the accused persons assaulted Sushil, Shiv Ratan and Harnam by butt of the gun. The remaining five persons were taken away by accused persons towards west. All of them were told by the accused to come back immediately with money failing which these five persons would be killed. Sushil, Shiv Ratan and Harnam went to their village and informed the villagers about it. With the help of the villagers, they started searching the abducted 10 persons who were taken away by the accused but could not found anyone. According to him, in the night itself they tried to inform at Sandana Police Station by telephone but they could not get the connection. Next day, early in the morning, he along with Sushil, Shiv Ratan and Harnam went to Police Station by bicycles. He prepared a complaint in his own handwriting under his signature. The said complaint has been marked as Ex. Ka- 1. Thereafter, after sending the injured persons to hospital at Sandana for treatment, he came back and with the help of villagers started searching for the kidnapped persons. In the western side of the tubewell dead body of Hari Kumar Tripathi was found lying in the sugarcane field of Laltu. At a distance of 1 km. in the west of Village Fatehpur, near a pond, they found the dead bodies of remaining four persons. These bodies were identified as Ram Kishore @ Chhotakkey Naney, Ganga Dai, Chhotakkey S/o Gaya Ram, Nanhakey. He along with the others noticed that the neck of all the four persons had 11 been cut. PW 1 further deposed that after recovering the dead bodies, his statement was recorded and Daroga Ji (PW 8) I.O. prepared a sketch map of the place of occurrence. He asserted that he had seen the faces of all the accused persons in the light of the torch. However, he admitted that he could not go and attend the identification parade which was conducted in the District Jail, Sitapur, due to his illness. In cross-examination also, he asserted that he had seen the guns in the hands of the accused and Sushil Kumar, Shiv Ratan and Harnam were assaulted by the accused persons by the butt of the gun. He informed that he had witnessed the incident from the distance of 10 mts. He also informed the Court that Hari Kumar Tripathi, who came from the western side had lantern and torch and when he focused his torch on criminals they assaulted him and snatched away his torch and extinguished the lantern. 10) The other important witness heavily relied on by the prosecution is PW 2 Sushil Kumar. He was an injured eye 12 witness. He narrated before the Court that nearly six years earlier i.e. on 21.12.1995, on the night of the incident, nearly about 8.30 p.m. he along with his brother Ram Kishore @ Chhotkaney, Shiv Ratan and Nanhakey were watering their fields from the tubewell. The said tubewell was owned by Sundari Devi, widow of Jai Narain. At that moment, eight miscreants reached there. They were armed with guns and torches. Two girls, one aged 10-13 years and the other 18-20 years and a young boy was also with them. All the miscreants came near the tubewell and caught hold four of them and asked about their properties and wealth. They threatened that unless they bring Rs.10,000/- each, they would be killed. In the meantime, Harnam, his mother Ganga Dai, Chhotakey and Hari Kumar Tripathi came there from western side. They were also caught hold of by the miscreants and enquired about their properties. They started beating Harnam, Shiv Ratan and him with the butt of the gun and directed him along with the others to go to village and 13 bring money. Thereafter, Hari Kumar Tripathi, Ram Kishore @ Chhotakey and his mother Ganga Dai and Nanhakey were taken away by them towards west. He also asserted that the miscreants were flashing their torches regularly. They had been recognized by PW 2 and others in the light of their torches. They were unknown to them. PW 2 along with others went to their village and informed the villagers about the demand of the miscreants. Thereafter, they started searching the accused and the persons who were taken away by the accused. PW 1 Rajesh had submitted a written complaint to the police. Since PW-2 had sustained injuries at the hands of the miscreants, he along with others went to Sandana hospital for treatment. Due to absence of doctor, treatment could not have been availed and he was given treatment only in Government Hospital on 27.12.1995. He further deposed that on return, he saw the dead body of Hari Kumar Tripathi in the sugar cane field of Laltu nearly 200-250 yards away from the tubewell. The other 14 four dead bodies were lying in the boundary of Arhar fields about 1 km. away near the pond. These dead bodies were of Ram Kishore @ Chottakey Naney, Nanhakey, Chhotakey and Ganga Dai. He also deposed about his visit to District Jail, Sitapur for test identification parade of miscreants. He informed the Court that he had identified three miscreants, namely, Guddu, Mulla and Tulla, who were present in the Court. These persons had also been identified in the jail. He further explained that these accused had been seen for the first time by him at the time of incident and thereafter, he saw them in the test identification parade. He also reiterated that before the incident, these miscreants were neither known nor seen by him. In his cross-examination, he reiterated that in the test identification parade which was conducted in District Jail, Sitapur, he identified the three accused. He explained that all three miscreants were not in one line and there were no specific marks of identification on the faces of accused persons. The face of all the accused were 15 not similar. He also reiterated that when miscreants were beating him they were flashing torches. He also denied the claim that the accused Mulla is a labourer and residing in Mohmadpur half a kilo metre away from his village. 11) It is seen that PW 2 corroborated the evidence of PW 1. It is further seen from his evidence that he also sustained injuries by one of the miscreants and this is also clear from his assertion and statement as well as the evidence of PW 7 - Dr. Sudarshan. In his evidence, PW 7 has stated that he examined injured Sushil Kumar - PW 2 and noticed the following injuries: Abrasion 1 cm x 0.5, which was present on the fore arm at the left side at 10 cm. below the wrist joint, the same was healed. According to him, this injury was of simple nature, one week old and it was inflicted by any blunt object. His report was marked as Ex K-15. Dr. Sudarshan - PW 7 has also asserted that this injury could have been caused by the butt of a gun. It is also relevant to point out that 16 apart from the fact that he had been injured at the hands of one of the accused persons which is evident from the statement of PW 7 who treated him. PW 2 also participated in the test identification parade which was held at District Jail, Sitapur. He also identified three miscreants, namely, Guddu, Mulla and Tulla. He further asserted that except on the date of occurrence of the incident, he had not seen them earlier and only on the date of test identification parade, he identified these persons at the jail. There is no reason to disbelieve his version that he did not see these persons on any other occasion except on the date of occurrence and at the time of identification parade. He being an injured eye witness as well as identified the appellants in the identification parade, the trial Judge as well as the High Court rightly accepted his version. 12) The other reliable witness examined on the side of the prosecution is PW 3-Harnam. He asserted that on the date and time of the incident, he witnessed the occurrence 17 along with PW 2. He also reiterated that those miscreants were carrying country-made guns and torches which they were flashing. He also sustained injuries. He was one of the four persons detained by the miscreants, enquired about their status, land details and demanded Rs.10,000/- each and when he informed the miscreants that he and others are poor people and difficult to comply with their demand, they started beating him. He also explained to the court that when the miscreants detained him and others for about half an hour, he noticed the faces of the miscreants in the light of their torches. Like PW 2, he also explained that in view of their inability to pay the ransom as demanded by the miscreants, initially they killed one Hari Kumar and thereafter killed other four-Nanhakey, Ram Kishore @ Chottakey Naney, Chhotakey and Ganga Dai, by throwing their dead bodies 1 km. away from the spot near a pond. 13) Along with PW 2 and others, PW 3 also reached Sandana Police Station at about 6 a.m. PW 1 lodged a 18 written complaint at the Police Station. He further explained that apart from himself, the other injured persons, namely, PW 2 and others were sent to Government Hospital, Sandana for medical examination. According to him, due to non-availability of doctor, they returned back to their village and searched the kidnapped persons and found one dead body near a tubewell and other four dead bodies one km. away from the tubewell near a pond. 14) About the injury of PW 3, PW 7 - Dr. Sudarshan stated that he conducted the medical examination of Harnam, PW 3, who was taken along with Sushil Kumar and Shiv Ratan. He prepared a medical report in his own hand writing with his signature which has been marked as Ex. K-16. 15) Like PW 2, PW 3 also asserted before the Court that none of the accused was known to him earlier. He also explained that he had gone to jail for identification of the accused. Before the Court, PW 3 identified, by putting his 19 hand on the accused Guddu, Tulla and Mulla who were standing in the dock and said that these miscreants were involved in the incident and for the first time he had seen these persons at the time of occurrence and second time in jail at the time of test identification parade. Though he was cross-examined at length, his evidence about the incident, the involvement of the accused, threat to kill the persons in custody, recovery of dead bodies, identifying the accused in the test identification parade, could not be shattered in any way. He being an injured eye witness, corroborated the evidence of PW 2 and identified the accused persons in the properly constituted test identification parade, his evidence was fully relied on by the prosecution and rightly accepted by the trial Court as well as by the High Court. 16) The next witness relied on by the prosecution is PW 4 - Smt. Kiran. Learned amicus curiae by pointing out the conduct of PW 4 in respect of her statement in the earlier case in State vs. Kailash Chandra & Ors. submitted 20 that the reliance on her evidence before the Trial court and accepted by the High Court cannot be sustained. She further pointed out that inasmuch as in the case of State vs. Kailash Chandra & Ors. though she claimed to be a victim, she deposed before the Court that the present accused Mulla and Guddu have nothing to do with the earlier incident. In such circumstances, according to the amicus curiae she is not competent to narrate the present incident and implicate the very same accused. On going through her entire evidence, we are unable to accept the stand taken by amicus for the following reasons: About the first incident, namely, setting fire to her house, she informed the court that six years earlier when she was at her matrimonial home at Surjapur, three criminals came there and set the roof of her house on fire. At the time, when she was in her house and male members had gone to extinguish the fire, the criminals forcibly took her away with them. This incident took place at 1.00 a.m. in the midnight. They had taken her to the nearby forest. She 21 further explained, that on the third day on which they had taken her away, after the sunset when it had become dark, eight miscreants armed with guns and torches reached near the tubewell of the village. She and other girl and a boy who were brought from somewhere were with them. There the criminals had caught eight persons and made them to sit at tubewell and they were asking them to bring Rs.10,000/- each then only they would be released. The accused persons had assaulted two to three persons by the butt of the gun and they were having torch lights. After keeping them for one hour, they released three persons and told them to bring Rs.10,000/- each and threatened that only then the remaining five persons would be released. After waiting for sometime since nobody came from the village the miscreants took away the said four men and one woman towards north. Nearly after crossing two or three agricultural fields they killed one person by slitting his throat by knife. Thereafter, about 1 km. in the southern side of the village near a 22 pond they took the remaining four persons, that is, three men and one woman and killed them by cutting their throat and left the dead bodies near a pond. She informed that after leaving the dead bodies, they all went away. She, however, managed to escape from the custody of the said criminals after 10-12 days. Among the eight persons who committed the crime at the tube-well one was Asha Ram, Ram Sebak, Guddu, Mulla and Tulla whose names she came to know since she was with them for 10-12 days. She asserted that Mulla had killed three persons and Guddu had killed two persons. She pointed out that she can recognize the accused Guddu, Mulla and Tulla by face and by name and she also identified them when Mulla and Guddu were present in the Court. 17) It is relevant to point out that just prior to the incident the very same accused, that is, Mulla and Guddu set fire to her house and took her to the forest. She was in the custody of miscreants for 10-12 days. It is true that at one stage she complained that they attempted to rape 23 her. However, in the said case, before the Court she failed to mention their name and implicate them in the said crime. In the present case, when she was examined, she explained that due to threat and fear she made a statement in the earlier case disowning these accused. Considering her explanation, particularly, because of the threat and fear she was forced to make such statement and in view of the categorical statement about the present occurrence implicating the miscreants including the present appellants Mulla and Guddu, explaining all the details about keeping three youngsters in their hands and five villagers demanding ransom for their release, identifying the five dead bodies at different places, there is no reason to disbelieve her version. 18) As rightly pointed out, the trial Judge has accepted her conduct in making a statement about the earlier case and relied on her present statement with reference to abduction and killing of five persons. The statement of PW-4 also corroborates with the evidence of injured eye 24 witnesses PWs 2 and 3. Further she was in the clutches of these miscreants for a period of 10-12 days and because of her familiarity of their faces, in categorical terms, she informed the Court that it was Mulla, who killed three persons and Guddu, who killed two persons by slitting their neck. Her explanation about her own case and detailed narration in respect of the present case are acceptable and rightly relied on by the Trial Court and accepted by the High Court. 19) Apart from the evidence of PWs 1-4 about killing of five persons, medical evidence also supports the case of prosecution. Dr. A.K.Verma, Medical Officer, District Hospital, Sitapur who conducted autopsy on the five dead bodies was examined as PW 5. He explained before the Court that on 22.12.1995 at about 8.00 p.m., he conducted post mortem on the dead body of Hari Kumar Tripathi, Nanhakey, Ram Kishore @ Chottakey Naney, Chhotakey and Ganga Dai, who were all residents of village Sandana, Police Station Sandana, District Sitapur. 25 According to him, the dead bodies had been brought by the constables and identified by them. After post mortem, he prepared a report (Ex. K2-K6). The details are as follows:- The post mortem on the dead body of Hari Kumar Tripathi was conducted by Dr. A.K. Verma on 22.12.1995 at 8.30 p.m. and he noted the following ante mortem injuries on the person of the deceased: 1. Incised wound 14 x 2 cm. x tissue deep on front of neck (more towards right side) 4.5 cm. below chin trachea, all blood vessels of both side nerves and muscles divided. 2. Incised wound 3 x 0.5 cm. side just above eye brow. 3. Incised wound 3 x 0.5 cm. skin deep on the nose. 4. Incised wound 2 x 0.5 cm. x skin cartilage deep upper part of the Pinna of right ear. In the opinion of the doctor cause of death was due to shock and haemorrhage as a result of ante mortem injuries. The post mortem on the dead body of Chhotkanney was conducted by Dr. A.K.Verma on 22.12.1995 at 8.00 p.m. and he noted the following ante mortem injuries on the person of the deceased: Incised wound 9 cm. x 1.5 cm. x tissue and bone deep. 1 cm. neck 6.5 cm. below 1 cm. chin. All self tissues uncludy muscle, blood vessels, trachea and oseophagus cut. In the opinion of the doctor cause of death was due to shock and haemorrhage as a result of ante mortem injuries. 26 The post mortem on the dead body of Chhotakkey was conducted by Dr. A.K.Verma on 22.12.1995 at 9.30 p.m. and he noted the following ante mortem injuries on the person of the deceased: 1. Incised wound 8.5 cm. x 2 cm. x bone deep on part of neck just below the adamis apple (Thyroid cartied) trachea, nerves, blood vessels of both sides divided along with other tissues oseophagus also cut. 2. Incised wound 2 cm. x 0.5 cm. x bone deep dorsum of left ring finger at its base. 3. Incised wound 1.5 cm. x. 0.5 cm. x muscle deep over finger web between ring finger and middle finger of right hand. In the opinion of the doctor cause of death was due to shock and haemorrhage as a result of ante mortem injuries. The post mortem on the dead body of Nanhakey was conducted by Dr. A.K. Verma on 22.12.1995 at 9.30 p.m. and he had noted the following ante mortem injury on the person of the deceased: Incised wound 9 cm. x 2 cm. x bone deep just above adamis apple (Thyroid cartied) trachea, nerves, blood vessels of both sides divided along with other tissues oseophagus also cut. In the opinion of the doctor cause of death was due to shock and haemorrhage as a result of ante mortem injuries. The post mortem on the dead body of Gangadai was conducted by Dr. A.K. Verma on 22.12.1995 at 10 p.m. and he had noted the following ante mortem injury on the person of the deceased: Incised wound 9.5 cm. x 2 cm. x bone and trachea deep over fold neck just above the thyroid 27 cartilage, trachea, blood vessels of both sides nerves and much and oseophagus all cut. In the opinion of the doctor cause of death was due to shock and haemorrhage as a result of ante mortem injuries. In all the reports, he mentioned cut in the nerves and muscles of neck and blood vessels apart from other injuries. He also opined that death was caused due to shock and hemorrhage and approximately one day before the post mortem. Though the police could not produce the knife used for killing the five persons, one of the accused had admitted about possession of knife apart from unlicensed gun at the time of the occurrence. There is no reason to disbelieve the assertion of PWs 1 to 4 as well as the evidence of PW 7 who treated the injured witnesses PWs 2 and 3 and the medical opinion of PW 5 about the cause of death of five persons. 20) Now, let us consider the arguments of the learned amicus curiae on the delay in conducting the test identification parade. The evidence of test identification is 28 admissible under Section 9 of the Indian Evidence Act. The Identification parade belongs to the stage of investigation by the police. The question whether a witness has or has not identified the accused during the investigation is not one which is in itself relevant at the trial. The actual evidence regarding identification is that which is given by witnesses in Court. There is no provision in the Cr. P.C. entitling the accused to demand that an identification parade should be held at or before the inquiry of the trial. The fact that a particular witness has been able to identify the accused at an identification parade is only a circumstance corroborative of the identification in Court. 21) Failure to hold test identification parade does not make the evidence of identification in court inadmissible, rather the same is very much admissible in law. Where identification of an accused by a witness is made for the first time in Court, it should not form the basis of 29 conviction. As was observed by this Court in Matru v. State of U.P., (1971) 2 SCC 75, identification tests do not constitute substantive evidence. They are primarily meant for the purpose of helping the investigating agency with an assurance that their progress with the investigation into the offence is proceeding on the right lines. The identification can only be used as corroborative of the statement in Court. (Vide Santokh Singh v. Izhar Hussain, (1973) 2 SCC 406). 22) The necessity for holding an identification parade can arise only when the accused persons are not previously known to the witnesses. The whole idea of a test identification parade is that witnesses who claim to have seen the culprits at the time of occurrence are to identify them from the midst of other persons without any aid or any other source. The test is done to check upon their veracity. In other words, the main object of holding an identification parade, during the investigation stage, is to 30 test the memory of the witnesses based upon first impression and also to enable the prosecution to decide whether all or any of them could be cited as eyewitnesses of the crime. The identification proceedings are in the nature of tests and significantly, therefore, there is no provision for it in the Code and the Indian Evidence Act, 1872. It is desirable that a test identification parade should be conducted as soon as possible after the arrest of the accused. This becomes necessary to eliminate the possibility of the accused being shown to the witnesses prior to the test identification parade. This is a very common plea of the accused and, therefore, the prosecution has to be cautious to ensure that there is no scope for making such allegation. If, however, circumstances are beyond control and there is some delay, it cannot be said to be fatal to the prosecution. 23) In Subhash v. State of U.P. (1987) 3 SCC 331, the parade was held about three weeks after the arrest of the 31 accused. Therefore, there was some room for doubt if the delay was in order to enable the identifying witnesses to see him in jail premises or police lock-up and thus make a note of his features. Moreover, four months had elapsed between the date of occurrence and the date of holding of the test identification parade. The descriptive particulars of the appellant were not given when the report was lodged, but while deposing before the Sessions Judge, the witnesses said that the accused was a tall person with shallow complexion. The Court noted that if on account of these features the witnesses were able to identify the appellant Shiv Shankar at the identification parade, they would have certainly mentioned about them at the earliest point of time when his face was fresh in their memory. It is important to note that since the conviction of the accused was based only on the identification at the test identification parade, the Court gave him the benefit of doubt while upholding the conviction of the co-accused. This is also a case where the conviction of the appellant 32 was based solely on the evidence of identification. There being a delay in holding the test identification parade and in the absence of corroborative evidence, this Court found it unsafe to uphold his conviction. 24) In State of Andhra Pradesh v. Dr. M.V. Ramana Reddy (1991) 4 SCC 536, the Court found a delay in holding the test parade for which there was no valid explanation. It held that in the absence of a valid explanation for the delay, the approach of the High Court could be said to be manifestly wrong calling for intervention.
 
                   25) In the case of Brij Mohan & Ors. v. State of Rajasthan, (1994) 1 SCC 413, the test identification parade was held after three months. The argument was that it was not possible for the witnesses to remember, after a lapse of such time, the facial expressions of the accused. It was held that generally with lapse of time memory of witnesses would get dimmer and therefore the 33 earlier the test identification parade is held it inspires more faith. It was held that no time limit could be fixed for holding a test identification parade. It was held that sometimes the crime itself is such that it would create a deep impression on the minds of the witnesses who had an occasion to see the culprits. It was held that this impression would include the facial impression of the culprits. It was held that such a deep impression would not be erased within a period of three months. 26) In Rajesh Govind Jagesha v. State of Maharashtra (1999 ) 8 SCC 428, the accused was apprehended on 20th January, 1993, while the identification parade was held on 13th February, 1993. It was also not disputed that at the time of identification parade the appellant was not having a beard and long hair as mentioned at the time of lodging of the first information report. It was also not disputed that no person with a beard and long hair was included in the parade. The 34 witnesses were alleged to have identified the accused at the first sight despite the fact that he had removed the long hair and beard. This Court held that the Magistrate should have associated 1-2 persons having resemblance with the persons described in the FIR and why it was not done was a mystery shrouded with doubts and not cleared by the prosecution. In these circumstances, the Court observed that the possibility of the witnesses having seen the accused between the date of arrest and the test identification parade cannot be ruled out. This case also rests on its own facts, and mere delay in holding the test identification parade was not the sole reason for rejecting the identification. 27) In the case of Daya Singh v. State of Haryana, (2001) 3 SCC 468, the test identification parade was held after a period of almost eight years inasmuch as the accused could not be arrested for a period of 7-1/2 years and after the arrest the test identification parade was held 35 after a period of six months. It was pointed out that the purpose of test identification parade is to have the corroboration to the evidence of the eye witnesses in the form of earlier identification. It was held that the substantive evidence is the evidence given by the witness in the Court and if that evidence is found to be reliable then the absence of corroboration by the test identification is not material. It was further held that the fact that the injured witnesses had lost their son and daughter-in-law showed that there were reasons for an enduring impression of the identity on the mind and memory of the witnesses. 28) This Court in Lal Singh v. State of U.P., (2003) 12 SCC 554, while discussing all the cases germane to the question of identification parades and the effect of delay in conducting them held that: It will thus be seen that the evidence of identification has to be considered in the peculiar facts and circumstances of each case. Though it is desirable to hold the test identification parade at the earliest possible opportunity, no hard and fast rule can be laid 36 down in this regard. If the delay is inordinate and there is evidence probablising the possibility of the accused having been shown to the witnesses, the Court may not act on the basis of such evidence. Moreover, cases where the conviction is based not solely on the basis of identification in court, but on the basis of other corroborative evidence, such as recovery of looted articles, stand on a different footing and the court has to consider the evidence in its entirety. 29) In the case of Anil Kumar v. State of Uttar Pradesh, (2003) 3 SCC 569, this Court observed as under: It is to be seen that apart from stating that delay throws a doubt on the genuineness of the identification parade and observing that after lapse of such a long time it would be difficult for the witnesses to remember the facial expressions, no other reasoning is given why such a small delay would be fatal ..A mere lapse of some days is not enough to erase the facial expressions of assailants from the memory of father and mother who have seen them killing their son... 30) In another case of Pramod Mandal v. State of Bihar, 2004 (13) SCC 150, placing reliance on the case of Anil Kumar (supra), this Court observed that it is neither possible nor prudent to lay down any invariable rule as to the period within which a Test Identification Parade must be held, or the number of witnesses who must correctly identify the accused, to sustain his conviction. These 37 matters must be left to the Courts of fact to decide in the facts and circumstances of each case. If a rule is laid down prescribing a period within which the Test Identification Parade must be held, it would only benefit the professional criminals in whose cases the arrests are delayed as the police have no clear clue about their identity, they being persons unknown to the victims. They therefore, have only to avoid their arrest for the prescribed period to avoid conviction. Similarly, there may be offences which by their very nature may be witnessed by a single witness, such as rape. The offender may be unknown to the victim and the case depends solely on the identification by the victim, who is otherwise found to be truthful and reliable. What justification can be pleaded to contend that such cases must necessarily result in acquittal because of there being only one identifying witness? Prudence therefore demands that these matters must be left to the wisdom of the courts of fact which must consider all aspects of the matter in the light of the 38 evidence on record before pronouncing upon the acceptability or rejection of such identification. 31) The identification parades are not primarily meant for the Court. They are meant for investigation purposes. The object of conducting a test identification parade is two- fold. First is to enable the witnesses to satisfy themselves that the accused whom they suspect is really the one who was seen by them in connection with the commission of the crime. Second is to satisfy the investigating authorities that the suspect is the real person whom the witnesses had seen in connection with the said occurrence. 32) Therefore, the following principles regarding identification parade emerge: (1) an identification parade ideally must be conducted as soon as possible to avoid any mistake on the part of witnesses; (2) this condition can be revoked if proper explanation justifying the delay is provided; and, (3) the authorities must make sure that the 39 delay does not result in exposure of the accused which may lead to mistakes on the part of the witnesses. 33) In the light of the above principles, let us consider whether the test identification parade conducted on 24.02.1996 at District Jail, Sitapur is valid. It is contended by the learned amicus Curiae that the appellants were arrested on 01.01.1996 and they were placed for identification only on 24.02.1996. It is further pointed out that the accused were put up for identification after 63 days of the occurrence and 55 days after their arrest. It is also pointed out that in the meantime, these persons were taken to court and present before the test identification parade, innumerable persons noticed them and in the absence of evidence that they were kept baparda at a time when they were taken to court, the report has no value at all. It is true that though the appellants were arrested on 01.01.1996 they were put up for identification on 24.02.1996. However, merely because 40 there is delay, the outcome of the identification parade cannot be thrown out if the same was properly done after following the procedure. In fact, when PWs 8 and 9 - I.O. and S.I were examined, nothing was suggested to them regarding delay in conducting the identification parade. 34) PW 6, Suresh Kumar, while examining before the court explained in categorical terms that all the accused were kept in baparda when they were taken to court for remand. He also claimed that when persons connected with the incident came to the Police Station, they were kept in baparda. In view of the assertion of the official witness and in the absence of allegation against him, it is to be accepted that the accused were not seen by these witnesses more particularly PWs 2 and 3, who identified them in the identification parade. 35) Admittedly, the Magistrate before whom the identification parade was conducted at the District Jail, Sitapur is no more and was not available for examination. On the other hand, One Vijay Kumar Verma, who 41 accompanied the Magistrate for test identification parade was examined as PW 11. He proved the identification memo as secondary evidence due to non-availability of the Magistrate in whose presence test identification parade was conducted. PW 11 has stated that witnesses PW 2 and PW 3 had correctly identified these accused persons. It is further seen that the accused persons thumb impressions and signatures were obtained before starting of identification parade as well as after completing the process. It is further seen that in the report, the Magistrate had put his signature. PW 11 who is competent to speak about the proceedings of the learned Magistrate and who recorded the test identification parade has also explained the presence of PW 2 and PW 3, the procedure followed and identification by them correctly identifying the accused Mulla and Guddu. After completing the process, identification memo was signed by the Magistrate and he also put his signature. Identification memo Ex. K-58 has been proved by PW 11. 42 From the materials, we hold that the test identification parade was properly conducted and all required procedures were duly followed. The statement of witnesses PWs 2 and 3 clearly show that they identified the appellants as the accused who involved in killing five persons on the night of 21.12.1995. In those circumstances, merely because there was some delay, evidence of PWs 2 and 3 who identified the appellants- accused coupled with the statement of official witnesses PW 6 and PW 11 who accompanied the Magistrate clearly prove the fact that test identification parade was conducted in accordance with the established procedure. There is no reason to disbelieve their version and we hold that the trial Court has correctly appreciated their evidence and the High Court has rightly affirmed it. 36) Learned amicus curiae put-forth another feeble argument that in the absence of proper light at the time of occurrence it is highly improper to accept the version of prosecution witnesses particularly, PWs 2 and 3 43 identifying these appellants. PW 1, in his cross examination, has stated that Harikumar Tripathi, who came from the western side had lantern and torch and when he focused his torch on criminals, they assaulted him and snatched away his torch and extinguished the lantern. PW 2 has asserted that the miscreants were flashing their torches regularly. They have been recognized properly by us in the light of their torches. They were not known to us. They were unknown...... Again he deposed when miscreants were beating me, they were flashing torches...... PW 3 has also asserted by saying the miscreants detained us at about half an hour at this spot and I had seen the faces of miscreants in the light of their torches..... In cross-examination, he also reiterated at first time, I had seen these persons at the time of occurrence and second time in jail when I went for identification. 37) Apart from the evidence of PWs 1 to 3, about the information that through their torch lights they were able 44 to recognize the faces of miscreants, PW 4 who was taken away by the miscreants to the forest in respect of the first incident informed the name of the accused correctly. Inasmuch as her association with the accused was longer than others, she mentioned the name of the accused without any difficulty. In those circumstances, the learned trial Judge is perfectly right in holding that the prosecution witnesses were able to correctly identify these persons and rightly rejected the defence plea. 38) Finally, we have to consider whether the death sentence awarded by the trial Judge affirmed by the High Court is justifiable and acceptable. After finding that the prosecution has established beyond reasonable doubt in respect of offences under Sections 148, 364A, 365 and 302 IPC, the learned Trial Judge, by giving adequate reasons, awarded death sentence to both the appellants which was confirmed by the High Court. Now, we have to find out whether death sentence is warranted in the facts and circumstances duly established by the prosecution. 45 39) When the constitutional validity of death penalty for murder provided in Section 302 of the Indian Penal Code and sentencing procedure embodied in sub-section 3 of Section 354 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1873, was questioned, the Constitution Bench of this Court in Bachhan Singh vs. State of Punjab (1980) 2 SCC 684, after thorough discussion, rejected the challenge to the constitutionality of the said provisions and ruled that life imprisonment is the rule and death sentence is an exception. 40) The above said decision of the Constitution Bench was considered by a three-Judge bench in Machhi Singh & Others vs. State of Pubjab (1983) 3 SCC 470. The discussion and the ultimate conclusion as well as instances/guidelines are relevant:- Death Sentence 32. The reasons why the community as a whole does not endorse the humanistic approach reflected in death sentence-in-no-case doctrine are not far to seek. In the first place, the very humanistic edifice is constructed on the foundation of reverence for life principle. When a 46 member of the community violates this very principle by killing another member, the society may not feel itself bound by the shackles of this doctrine. Secondly, it has to be realized that every member of the community is able to live with safety without his or her own life being endangered because of the protective arm of the community and on account of the rule of law enforced by it. The very existence of the rule of law and the fear of being brought to book operates as a deterrent of those who have no scruples in killing others if it suits their ends. Every member of the community owes a doubt to the community for this protection. When ingratitude is shown instead of gratitude by killing a member of the community which protects the murderer himself from being killed, or when the community feels that for the sake of self-preservation the killer has to be killed, the community may well withdraw the protection by sanctioning the death penalty. But the community will not do so in every case. It may do so in rarest of rare cases when its collective conscience is so shocked that it will expect the holders of the judicial power centre to inflict death penalty irrespective of their personal opinion as regards desirability or otherwise of retaining death penalty. The community may entertain such a sentiment when the crime is viewed from the platform of the motive for, or the manner of commission of the crime, or the anti-social or abhorrent nature of the crime, such as for instance: I. Manner of commission of murder 33. When the murder is committed in an extremely brutal, grotesque, diabolical, revolting or dastardly manner so as to arouse intense and extreme indignation of the community. For instance, (i) when the house of the victim is set aflame with the end in view to roast him alive in the house. (ii) when the victim is subjected to inhuman acts of torture or cruelty in order to bring about his or her death. 47 (iii) when the body of the victim is cut into pieces or his body is dismembered in a fiendish manner. II. Motive for commission of murder
 
                   34. When the murder is committed for a motive which evinces total depravity and meanness. For instance when (a) a hired assassin commits murder for the sake of money or reward (b) a cold-blooded murder is committed with a deliberate design in order to inherit property or to gain control over property of a ward or a person under the control of the murderer or vis-a-vis whom the murderer is in a dominating position or in a position of trust, or (c) a murder is committed in the course for betrayal of the motherland. III. Anti-social or socially abhorrent nature of the crime 35. (a) When murder of a member of a Scheduled Caste or minority community etc., is committed not for personal reasons but in circumstances which arouse social wrath. For instance when such a crime is committed in order to terrorize such persons and frighten them into fleeing from a place or in order to deprive them of, or make them surrender, lands or benefits conferred on them with a view to reverse past injustices and in order to restore the social balance. (b) In cases of bride burning and what are known as dowry deaths or when murder is committed in order to remarry for the sake of extracting dowry once again or to marry another woman on account of infatuation. IV. Magnitude of crime 36. When the crime is enormous in proportion. For instance when multiple murders say of all or almost all the members of a family or a large number of persons of a particular caste, community, or locality, are committed. V. Personality of victim of murder 48 37. When the victim of murder is (a) an innocent child who could not have or has not provided even an excuse, much less a provocation, for murder (b) a helpless woman or a person rendered helpless by old age or infirmity (c) when the victim is a person vis-a-vis whom the murderer is in a position of domination or trust (d) when the victim is a public figure generally loved and respected by the community for the services rendered by him and the murder is committed for political or similar reasons other than personal reasons. 38. In this background the guidelines indicated in Bachan Singh case1 will have to be culled out and applied to the facts of each individual case where the question of imposing of death sentence arises. The following propositions emerge from Bachan Singh case1: of death need not be inflicted except in gravest cases of extreme culpability. (ii) Before opting for the death penalty the circumstances of the `offender also require to be taken into consideration along with the circumstances of the `crime. (iii) Life imprisonment is the rule and death sentence is an exception. In other words death sentence must be imposed only when life imprisonment appears to be an altogether inadequate punishment having regard to the relevant circumstances of the crime, and provided, and only provided, the option to impose sentence of imprisonment for life cannot be conscientiously exercised having regard to the nature and circumstances of the crime and all the relevant circumstances. (iv) A balance sheet of aggravating and mitigating circumstances has to be drawn up and in doing so the mitigating circumstances have to be accorded full weightage and a just balance has to be struck between the aggravating and the mitigating circumstances before the option is exercised. 39. In order to apply these guidelines inter alia the following questions may be asked and answered: 49 (a) Is there something uncommon about the crime which renders sentence of imprisonment for life inadequate and calls for a death sentence? (b) Are the circumstances of the crime such that there is no alternative but to impose death sentence even after according maximum weightage to the mitigating circumstances which speak in favour of the offender? 40. If upon taking an overall global view of all the circumstances in the light of the aforesaid proposition and taking into account the answers to the questions posed hereinabove, the circumstances of the case are such that death sentence is warranted, the court would proceed to do so. 41) Following the guidelines and principles enunciated in Bachhan Singhs case & Machhi Singhs case, (supra), this Court in subsequent decisions applied those principles and either confirmed the death sentence or altered the same as life sentence vide Asharfi Lal & Others vs. State of Uttar Pradesh, (1987) 3 SCC 224, Ravji vs. State of Rajasthan, (1996) 2 SCC 175 and Ram Singh vs. Sonia & Others, (2007) 3 SCC 1. 42) It is settled legal position that the punishment must fit the crime. It is the duty of the Court to impose proper punishment depending upon the decree of criminality and desirability to impose such punishment. As a measure of 50 social necessity and also as a means of deterring other potential offenders, the sentence should be appropriate befitting the crime. 43) This Court in Bachhan Singhs case (supra) has held that: A real and abiding concern for the dignity of human life postulates resistance to taking a life through laws instrumentality. That ought not to be done save in the rarest of rare cases when the alternative option is unquestionably foreclosed. 44) Therefore, it is open for the court to grant a death penalty in an extremely narrow set of cases, which is signified by the phrase `rarest of the rare. This rarest of the rare test relates to special reasons under Section 354(3). Importantly, as the Court held, this route is open to the Court only when there is no other punishment which may be alternatively given. This results in the death penalty being an exception in sentencing, especially in the case where some other punishment can suffice. It was in this context that the Court had noted: The expression special reasons in the context of this provision, obviously means exceptional reasons founded on 51 the exceptionally grave circumstances of the particular case relating to the crime as well as the criminal 45) In Panchhi v. State of U.P., (1998) 7 SCC 177, this Court also elucidates on when the alternative option is foreclosed benchmark in the following terms: 16. When the Constitution Bench of this Court, by a majority, upheld the constitutional validity of death sentence in Bachan Singh v. State of Punjab this Court took particular care to say that death sentence shall not normally be awarded for the offence of murder and that it must be confined to the rarest of rare cases when the alternative option is foreclosed. In other words, the Constitution Bench did not find death sentence valid in all cases except in the aforesaid freaks wherein the lesser sentence would be, by any account, wholly inadequate. In Machhi Singh v. State of Punjab a three-Judge Bench of this Court while following the ratio in Bachan Singh case laid down certain guidelines among which the following is relevant in the present case: (SCC p.489, para 38) Here, this court quoted Guideline no. 4 in para 38 of Machhi Singh (supra) which we have extracted earlier. 46) In the same case, this court held that the brutality of the murders must be seen along with all the mitigating factors in order to come to a conclusion: 20. We have extracted the above reasons of the two courts only to point out that it is the savagery or brutal manner in which the killers perpetrated the acts on the victims including one little child which had persuaded the two courts to choose death sentence for the four persons. No doubt brutality looms large in the murders in this case particularly of the old and also the tender-aged child. It may be that the manner in which the killings were perpetrated may not by itself show any lighter side but that is not very peculiar or 52 very special in these killings. Brutality of the manner in which a murder was perpetrated may be a ground but not the sole criterion for judging whether the case is one of the rarest of rare cases as indicated in Bachan Singh case. In a way, every murder is brutal, and the difference between one from the other may be on account of mitigating or aggravating features surrounding the murder. 47) In Bachan Singh (supra) again, this Court discussed mitigating circumstances as follows: 206. Dr Chitale has suggested these mitigating factors: Mitigating circumstances.--In the exercise of its discretion in the above cases, the court shall take into account the following circumstances: (1) That the offence was committed under the influence of extreme mental or emotional disturbance. (2) The age of the accused. If the accused is young or old, he shall not be sentenced to death. (3) The probability that the accused would not commit criminal acts of violence as would constitute a continuing threat to society. (4) The probability that the accused can be reformed and rehabilitated. The State shall by evidence prove that the accused does not satisfy the conditions (3) and (4) above. (5) That in the facts and circumstances of the case the accused believed that he morally justified in committing the offence. (6) That the accused acted under the duress or domination of another person. (7) That the condition of the accused showed that he was mentally defective and that the said defect impaired his capacity to appreciate the criminality of his conduct. We will do no more than to say that these are undoubtedly relevant circumstances and must be given great weight in the determination of sentence. 53 48) Therefore, in the determination of the death penalty, para. 38 of Machhi Singhs case (supra) must be paid due attention to it. The test for the determination of the `rarest of the rare category of crimes inviting the death sentence thus includes broad criterions i.e. (1) the gruesome nature of the crime, (2) the mitigating and aggravating circumstances in the case. These must take into consideration the position of the criminal, and (3) whether any other punishment would be completely inadequate. This rule emerges from the dictum of this Court that life imprisonment is the rule and death penalty an exception. Therefore, the Court must satisfy itself that death penalty would be the only punishment which can be meted out to the convict. 49) In the light of the above principles, let us examine the reasoning of the Trial Judge and its confirmation by the High Court in awarding death sentence. Before the Trial Court, High Court and even before us the learned amicus curiae appearing on behalf of the accused Mulla and 54 Guddu argued that the offences alleged to have committed by these persons cannot come in the category for which they may be punished with death sentence. She also pointed out that neither they have any criminal history nor the prosecution could show that the accused Mulla and Guddu were involved in dacoity/gang or taken part in any criminal activities prior to the occurrence of the present case. Learned amicus curiae further pointed out that even the one incident pressed into service by the prosecution ended in acquittal. On the other hand, the learned senior counsel appearing for the State by pointing various instances how the five persons were killed mercilessly by these accused, pleaded that no sympathy or leniency should be afforded to these persons and prayed for confirmation of the death sentence as awarded by the Trial Court and confirmed by the High Court. We have already quoted the Constitution Bench decision in Bachhan Singh (supra) and three-Judge Bench decision in Machhi Singh (supra) to the effect that in the case of 55 murder, life imprisonment is a rule and imposition of death sentence is an exceptional one and the same should come within the purview of rarest of rare category. We have already noted that the accused Mulla is of the age 50 years and Guddu is of the age 30 years at the time of committing the offence in question. No material was placed or available about the family background of these two accused and whether these persons are married or not and about the family circumstance etc. Learned amicus curiae fairly stated that no family member ever approached during the entire proceedings enquiring these appellants. The perusal of the case records also shows that no one is depending on them and no family responsibility is on the shoulders of these accused persons. 50) Now, coming to their background as to the criminality, the prosecution pressed into service the earlier incident relating to the offences of abduction, murder, mischief by firing led against these persons. The 56 fact remained that ultimately both of them were acquitted from those offences. Admittedly, prosecution has not placed any other material about their criminal antecedents. 51) No doubt, the aggravating circumstances against the appellants show that it is a case of cold blooded murdering of five persons including one woman of the middle age, the unfortunate victims did not provoke or resist. The murder of five innocent persons were committed for ransom which was executed despite the fact that the poor villagers were unable to pay the ransom as demanded, the accused knowing fully aware of their inability and poverty of the victims. 52) As we have noted above, along with the aggravating circumstances, it falls on us to point to the mitigating circumstances in the case. In this case, we observe three factors which we must take into account, 1) the length of the incarceration already undergone by the convicts; 57 2) the current age of the convicts; and finally, 3) circumstances of the convicts generally. 53) As we have noted above, old age has emerged as a mitigating factor since Bachhan Singh (supra). This court in Swamy Shraddananda v. State of Karnataka (2008) 13 SCC 767 substituted death sentence to life imprisonment since the convicts were 64 years old and had been in custody for 16 years. Even in the present case, one of the convicts is around 65 years old. The charges had been framed in 1999 and they have been in custody since 1996. They have been convicted by the Sessions Court in 2005. Clearly, the appellants have been in prison for the last 14 years. 54) Another factor which unfortunately has been left out in much judicial decision-making in sentencing is the socio-economic factors leading to crime. We at no stage suggest that economic depravity justify moral depravity, but we certainly recognize that in the real world, such factors may lead a person to crime. The 48th report of the 58 Law Commission also reflected this concern. Therefore, we believe, socio-economic factors might not dilute guilt, but they may amount to mitigating circumstances. Socio- economic factors lead us to another related mitigating factor, i.e. the ability of the guilty to reform. It may not be misplaced to note that a criminal who commits crimes due to his economic backwardness is most likely to reform. This court on many previous occasions has held that this ability to reform amount to a mitigating factor in cases of death penalty. 55) In the present case, the convicts belong to an extremely poor background. With lack of knowledge on the background of the appellants, we may not be certain as to their past, but one thing which is clear to us is that they have committed these heinous crimes for want of money. Though we are shocked by their deeds, we find no reason why they cannot be reformed over a period of time. 59 56) This Court in Dalbir Singh and others v. State of Punjab (1979) 3 SCC 745 had considered the question of the length of incarceration when death penalty is reduced to life imprisonment. It was held that: 14. The sentences of death in the present appeal are liable to be reduced to life imprisonment. We may add a footnote to the ruling in Rajendra Prasad case. Taking the cue from the English legislation on abolition,we may suggest that life imprisonment which strictly means imprisonment for the whole of the mens life but in practice amounts to incarceration for a period between 10 and 14 years may, at the option of the convicting court, be subject to the condition that the sentence of imprisonment shall last as long as life lasts, where there are exceptional indications of murderous recidivism and the community cannot run the risk of the convict being at larger. This takes care of judicial apprehensions that unless physically liquidated the culprit may at some remote time repeat murder. 57) This Court in Subash Chander v. Krishan Lal (2001) 4 SCC 458 considered the length of life imprisonment, while going over the precedents germane to the question and observed as follows: 20. Section 57 of the Indian Penal Code provides that in calculating fractions of terms of punishment of imprisonment for life shall be reckoned as equivalent to imprisonment for 20 years. It does not say that the transportation for life shall be deemed to be for 20 years. The position at law is that unless the life imprisonment is commuted or remitted by appropriate authority under the relevant provisions of law applicable in the case, a prisoners sentenced to life imprisonment is bound in law to serve the 60 life term in prison. In Gopal Vinayak Godse v. State of Maharashtra & Others 1961 Cri L J 736a , the convict petitioner contended that as the term of imprisonment actually served by him exceeded 20 years, his further detention in jail was illegal and prayed for being set at liberty. Repelling such a contention and referring to the judgment of the Privy Council in Pandit Kishori Lal v. King Emperor 1944 (1) 72 LR IndAp this Court held: If so, the next question is whether there is any provision of law whereunder a sentence for life imprisonment, without any formal remission by appropriate Government, can be automatically treated as one for a definite period. No such provision is found in the Indian Penal Code, Code of Criminal Procedure or the Prisons Act. Though the Government of India stated before the Judicial Committee in the case cited supra that, having regard to s. 57 of the Indian Penal Code, 20 years imprisonment was equivalent to a sentence of transportation for life, the Judicial Committee did not express its final opinion on that question. The Judicial Committee observed in that case thus at p.10: Assuming that the sentence is to be regarded as one of twenty years, and subject to remission for good conduct, he had not earned remission sufficient to entitle him to discharge at the time of his application, and it was therefore rightly dismissed, but in saying this, their Lordships are not to be taken as meaning that a life sentence must and in all cases be treated as one of not more than twenty years, or that the convict is necessarily entitled to remission. Section 57 of the Indian Penal Code has no real bearing on the question raised before us. For calculating fractions of terms of punishment the section provides that transportation for life shall be regarded as equivalent to imprisonment for twenty years. It does not say that transportation for life shall be deemed to be transportation for twenty years for all purposes; nor does the amended section which substitutes the words imprisonment for life for transportation for life enable the drawing of any such all-embracing fiction. A sentence of transportation for life or imprisonment for life must prima facie be treated as transportation or imprisonment for the whole of the remaining period of the convicted persons natural life. 61 21. In State of Madhya Pradesh v. Ratan Singh & Ors. 1976 Cri L J 1192 this Court held that a sentence of imprisonment for life does not automatically expire at the end of the 20 years, including the remissions. The sentence for imprisonment for life means a sentence for the entire life of the prisoner unless the appropriate Government choses to exercise its discretion to remit either the whole or a part of the sentence under Section 401 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, observed the court. To the same effect are the judgments in Sohan Lal v. Asha Ram & Others AIR 1981 SC 174a , Hagirath v. Delhi Administration 1985 Cri L J 1179 and the latest judgment in Zahid Hussein & Ors. v. State of West Bengal & Anr. 2001 Cri L J 1692 . Finally, this Court held that life imprisonment would mean imprisonment for the rest of the life of the convict, unless the State Government remits the sentence to 20 years. This position has been accepted by this Court on various occasions [See Shri Bhagwan v. State of Rajasthan, (2001) 6 SCC 296; Jayawant Dattatray Suryarao v. State of Maharashtra, (2001) 10 SCC 109]. 58) This question came up again recently before this Court in Ramraj @ Nanhoo @ Bihnu v. State of Chhattisgarh, 2009 (14) SCALE 533, where this Court considered the variance in precedents and ruled as follows: 62 15. What ultimately emerges from all the aforesaid decisions is that life imprisonment is not to be interpreted as being imprisonment for the whole of a convicts natural life within the scope of Section 45 of the aforesaid Code. The decision in Swamy Shraddanandas case (supra) was taken in the special facts of that case where on account of a very brutal murder, the appellant had been sentenced to death by the Trial Court and the reference had been accepted by the High Court. However, while agreeing with the conviction and confirming the same, the Honble Judges were of the view that however heinous the crime may have been, it did not come within the. definition of rarest of rare cases so as to merit a death sentence. Nevertheless, having regard to the nature of the offence, Their Lordships were of the view that in the facts of the case the claim of the petitioner for premature release after a minimum incarceration for a period of 14 years, as envisaged under Section 433A Cr.P.C., could not be acceded to, since the sentence of death had been stepped down to that of life imprisonment, which was a lesser punishment. 16. On a conjoint reading of Sections 45 and 47 of the Indian Penal Code and Sections 432, 433 and 433A Cr.P.C., it is now well established that a convict awarded life sentence has to undergo imprisonment for at least 14 years. While Sections 432 and 433 empowers the appropriate Government to suspend, remit or commute sentences, including a sentence of death and life imprisonment, a fetter has been imposed by the legislature on such powers by the introduction of Section 433A into the Code of Criminal Procedure by the Amending Act of 1978, which came into effect on and from 18th December, 1978. By virtue of the non-obstante clause used in Section 433A, the minimum term of imprisonment in respect of an offence where death is one of the punishments provided by laws or where a death sentence has been commuted to life sentence, has been prescribed as 14 years. In the various decisions rendered after the decision in Godses case (supra), imprisonment for life has been repeatedly held to mean imprisonment for the natural life term of a convict, though the actual period of imprisonment may stand reduced on account of remissions earned. But in no case, with the possible exception of the powers vested in the President under Article 72 of the Constitution and the power vested in the Governor under 63 Article 161 of the Constitution, even with remissions earned, can a sentence of imprisonment for life be reduced to below 14 years. It is thereafter left to the discretion of the concerned authorities to determine the actual length of imprisonment having regard to the gravity and intensity of the offence. Section 433A Cr.P.C., which is relevant for the purpose of this case, reads as follows: 433A. Restriction on powers of remission or commutation in certain cases.- Notwithstanding anything contained in Section 432, where a sentence of imprisonment for life is imposed on conviction of a person for an offence for which death is one of the punishment provided by laws or where a sentence of death imposed on a person has been commuted under Section 433 into one of imprisonment for life, such person shall not be released from prison unless he had served at least fourteen years of imprisonment. 17. In the present case, the facts are such that the petitioner is fortunate to have escaped the death penalty. We do not think that this is a fit case where the petitioner should be released on completion of 14 years imprisonment. The petitioners case for premature release may be taken up by the concerned authorities after he completes 20 years imprisonment, including remissions earned. 59) We are in complete agreement with the above dictum of this Court. It is open to the sentencing Court to prescribe the length of incarceration. This is especially true in cases where death sentence has been replaced by life imprisonment. The Court should be free to determine the length of imprisonment which will suffice the offence committed. 64 60) Thus we hold that despite the nature of the crime, the mitigating circumstances can allow us to substitute the death penalty with life sentence. 61) Here we like to note that the punishment of life sentence in this case must extend to their full life, subject to any remission by the Government for good reasons. 62) For the foregoing reasons and taking into account all the aggravating and mitigating circumstances, we confirm the conviction, however, commute the death sentence into that of life imprisonment. The appeal is disposed of accordingly.
 
 
 
LIST OF JUDGEMENTS
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    Death Penalty commuted to Life by Supreme Court- 21/1/2014.         
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    6/12/2013:"The analysis of the materials placed before us clearly brings the case within the principles laid down by the Constitution Bench of this Court in Committee for Protection of Democratic Rights (supra). We hereby direct the respondents to hand over all the documents to the CBI within a period of two weeks from the date of receipt of copy of this order."-Supreme Court.         
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    21/11/2013: "Magistrate has to exercise judicial discretion and apply his mind to the contents of the petition. The refer report as well as the statement of the complainant would indicate that no offence has been made out so far as the second accused is concerned since, admittedly, no money was entrusted to her and that second accused is the divorced wife of the first accused"- Supreme Court         
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    20/11/2013: Held,"...not a fit case requiring interference in the excercise if inherent jurisdiction under section 482 cr.p.c."- Supreme Court.         
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    "While renewing the term of the appointment of the existing incumbents the State Government is required to consider their past performance and conduct in the light of the recommendations made by the District Judges and the District Magistrates...."- Supreme Court - 13/11/2013.         
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    Conclusion/Directions: 111) In view of the aforesaid discussion, we hold: i) Registration of FIR is mandatory under Section 154 of the Code, if the information discloses commission of a cognizable offence and no preliminary inquiry is permissible in such a situation.         
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    11/11/2013-" What is a little disturbing about this case is that it is illustrative of the slow movement of the wheels of criminal justice delivery. The dowry death took place on 6th September, 1989. The Trial..."-Supreme Court.         
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    18/10/2013: OverAct- Aplication of 149 IPC defined- Converted to 324 from 302 IPC-" -Supreme Court.         
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    "The medical evidence to the large extent confirmed that deceased was prior to the suicide committed by her.Appeal dissmissed"-Supreme Court. Dated 24.7.2013         
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    'Special knowledge of accused- not explained- Effect"-Supreme Court. Dated 23.7.2013         
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    23 July 2013-"Once the possession of contraband material is established, the accused has to explain...."-Supreme Court.         
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    10 may 2013-New Plea when may be raised for the first time before the Apex Court-Supreme Court.         
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    "Life Imprisionment"-Meaning of- Discussed. "Para 66. Off and on, the issue has been the interpretation of “life sentence” – does it mean imprisonment for only 14 years or 20 years or does it mean for the life of the convict. This doubt has been laid to rest in several cases, more recently in Sangeet where it has been unequivocally laid down that a sentence of imprisonment for life means imprisonment for the rest of the normal life of the convict. The convict is not entitled to any remission in a case of sentence of life imprisonment, as is commonly believed. However, if the convict is sought to be released before the expiry of his life, it can only be by following the procedure laid down in Section 432 of the Code of Criminal Procedure or by the Governor exercising power under Article 161 of the Constitution or by the President exercising power under Article 72 of the Constitution. There is no other method or procedure. Whether the statutory procedure under Section 432 of the Code of Criminal Procedure can be stultified for a period of 20 years or 30 years needs further discussion as observed in Sangeet..."- Supreme Court - Dated 25.4.2013         
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    Meaning of Life Imprisionment - Supreme Court: Yakub Abdul Razak Memon vs. The State of Maharashtra, through CBI , Bombay - See Para524 – "As rightly observed by this Court in Sangeet and Anr. vs. State of Haryana, 2012 (11) Scale 140, there is misconception that a prisoner serving life sentence has an indefeasible right to release on completion of either 14 years or 20 years imprisonment. A convict undergoing life imprisonment is expected to remain in custody till the end of his life, subject to any remission granted by the appropriate Government under Section 432 of the Code, which in turn is subject to the procedural checks mentioned in the said provision and to further substantive check in Section 433-A of the Code" - Supreme Court of India, Dated 21st. March 2013.         
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    UTTAR PRADESH L.R.MANUAL: ""....The order dated 3rd April, 2008, which we have reproduced above, clearly shows non-application of mind and non-recording of reasons, which leads only to one conclusion, that the said order was an arbitrary exercise of power by the State. We cannot find any fault with the reasoning of the High Court in that behalf. But we do find some merit in the contention raised on behalf of the appellant State that the High Court should not have directed appointments while regulating the age, as has been done by the High Court in operative part of its judgment. There is right of consideration, but none can claim right to appointment. Para 7.06 states that renewal beyond 60 years shall depend upon continuous good work, sound integrity and physical fitness of the counsel. These are the considerations which have been weighed by the competent authority in the State Government to examine whether renewal/extension beyond 60 years should be granted or not. That does not ipso facto means that there is a right to appointment upto the age of 60 years irrespective of work, conduct and integrity of the counsel. The rule provides due safeguards as it calls for the report of the District Judge and the District Officer granting renewal""- DISMISSED- SUPREME COURT OF INDIA- DATED-13-12-2012         
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    HELD--The mere undertaking of a further investigation either by the Investigating Officer on his own or upon the directions of the superior police officer or pursuant to a direction by the concerned Magistrate to whom the report is forwarded does not mean that the report submitted under Section 173(2) is abandoned or rejected. It is only that either the Investigating Agency or the concerned Court is not completely satisfied with the material collected by the investigating agency and is of the opinion that possibly some more material is required to be collected in order to sustain the allegations of the commission of the offence indicated in the report.--SUPREME COURT OF INDIA- DATED:6-11-2012         
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    Issue-Whether the said offence is suicide or murder-Medical Evidence-However, what is clinching in the present case is the medicalevidence which clearly indicates that Remani was forcibly administeredFuradan; she had resisted this forcible administration; as a result of herresistance, she received several minor injuries on her body. Eventually,with a view to overcome her resistance, she was smothered and ultimatelyshe died as a result of the forcible administration of Furadan and smothering. No person other than her husband could have possibly causedRemani’s death, especially considering the motive or grudge that heharboured against her.-Held guilty of murder-SUPREME COURT OF INDIA- DATED: 30.10.2012         
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    It is the duty of an Appellate Court to look into the evidence adduced in the case arrive at an independent conclusion as to whether the said evidence can be relied upon or not and even it can be relied upon then whether the prosecution can be said to have proved beyond reasonable doubt on the said evidence. The credibility of a witness has to be adjudged by Appellate Court in drawing inference from proved and admitted facts-SUPREME COURT OF INDIA-DATED: 1ST OCT 2012         
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    It is the bounden duty of the Division Bench to carry out such exercise in the manner set out above and we feel it appropriate, therefore, to set aside the judgment impugned in this appeal for that reason and remit the matter back to the High Court for deciding the Reference under Section 366 Cr.P.C. in the manner it ought to have been decided. Inasmuch as the conviction and sentence imposed on the appellant was by the judgment dated 09.03.2007 of the trial Court and the offence alleged was dated 16.01.2006, while remitting the matter back to the High Court, we direct the High Court to dispose of the Reference along with the Appeals expeditiously and in any case within three months from the date of receipt of the records sent back to the High Court. The appeal stands disposed of with the above directions to the High Court         
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    CBI is not justified in proceeding with the FIR No. R.C. 0062003A0019 dated 05.10.2003. In view of the above discussion, we are satisfied that the CBI exceeded its jurisdiction in lodging FIR No. R.C. 0062003A0019 dated 05.10.2003 in the absence of any direction from this Court in the order dated 18.09.2003 or in any subsequent orders - Supreme Court - Dated 6.7.2012         
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    "As has been held by this Court in Randhir Singh Rana v. State (Delhi Administration) [(1997) 1 SCC 361], once a Magistrate takes cognizance of an offence under Section 190 Cr.P.C., he cannot order of his own further investigation in the case under Section 156(3) Cr.P.C. but if subsequently the Sessions Court passes an order discharging the accused persons, further investigation by the police on its own would be permissible, which may also result in submission of fresh charge-sheet." - Supreme Court - Dated 7/6/2012.         
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    Supreme Court of India- Classification of Aggrevating and Mitigating Offences- Sec 302 IPC- Death Panelty converted into Life Imprisonment (21 Years).         
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    Sentences- Power of remmission under 432(1) Cr.P.C.- Scope and principles considered.- Supreme Court- Dated 20.11.2012.         
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    Quashing of FIR - Law discussed - Supreme Court         
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    Civil Laws-Section 64A(1)(a)-Goods Act, 1930-Receipt given to the petitioner for payment of the amount in the proforma invoice, it had been indicated that the prices prevailing on the date of billing would apply. --The billing was done on 5th of April, 1989. In the absence of any evidence of any deliberate intention on the part of the respondents to delay delivery of the vehicle, we are unable to agree with the petitioner that the increase in price has to be borne by the respondents -- It is the liability of the petitioner to pay the extra price when the excise duty had been enhanced prior to the delivery of the vehicle— -The Special Leave Petition fails and is dismissed-Supreme Court of India :Order Dated Feb 10, 2011         
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    Confession a very weak type of evidence-Confession in TADA Case-The alleged confession was subsequently retracted by the appellant. The alleged confession was not corroborated by any other material. We have held in Arup Bhuyan”“s case (supra) that confession is a very weak type of evidence, particularly when alleged to have been made to the police, and it is not safe to convict on its basis unless there is adequate corroborative material. In the present case there is no corroborative material:SUPREME COURT OF INDIA-10-02-2011.         
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    Civil Laws-Rule 4-Haryana State Agricultural Marketing Board (Sale of Immovable Property) Rules 1997-It is clear that the allottees cannot postpone the payment of instalments merely on the ground that some of the amenities were not ready. If they were not entitled for postponement of the instalments, it follows that they will be liable to pay the normal interest on the delayed instalments up to date of payment. However, having regard to the fact that the Rules did not contemplate compound interest and penal interest and the Market Committee was yet to complete certain infrastructural work like water, sewerage disposal, as held in Shantikunj (supra), the Market Committee will not be entitled to claim any compound interest or penal interest.-Supreme Court of India -Order Dated: FEBRUARY 10, 2011         
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    One Bar One Vote:Supreme Court Dated 26/09/2011         
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    Under Constitution administrative powers vests in Chief Justice and not in Judges - "As pointed out above, under the constitutional scheme, Chief Justice is the supreme authority and the other Judges, so far as officers and servants of the High Court are concerned, have no role to play on the administrative side. Some Judges, undoubtedly, will become Chief Justices in their own turn one day, but it is imperative under the constitutional discipline that they work in tranquillity. Judges have been described as "hermits". They have to live and behave like "hermits" who have no desire or aspiration, having shed it through penance. Their mission is to supply light and not heat. This is necessary so that their latent desire to run the High Court administration may not sprout before time, at least, in some cases."-Verdict of Apex Court followed in CIVIL APPEAL NO. 7936 OF 2011 The Registrar General High Court of Judicature at Madras Vs. R. Perachi and others - Dated 19/09/2011.         
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    "The above decisions make it clear that though this Court is competent to entrust the investigation to any independent agency, once the investigating agency complete their function of investigating into the offences, it is the court in which the charge-sheet is filed which is to deal with all matters relating to the trial of the accused including matters falling within the scope of Section 173(8) of the Code. Thus, generally, this Court may not require further monitoring of the case/investigation. However, we make it clear that if any of the parties including CBI require any further direction, they are free to approach this Court by way of an application."- Supreme Court.         
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    Advocates Act and State Bar Council of Madhya Pradesh Rules - The provisions of Rules 121 and 122-A (in particular) of the M.P. Rules are not ultra vires of the provisions, including the provisions of Section 15, of the Advocates Act. These rules also do not suffer from the vice of excessive delegation.

In view of the language of Section 15(3) of the Advocates Act and the factual matrix afore-noticed by us, it is clear that the amended rules of the M.P. Rules had received the approval of the Bar Council of India, particularly Rule 122-A. The Rules would not be invalidated for want of issuance of any notification, as it is not the requirement in terms of Section 15(3) of the Advocates Act and in any case would be a curable irregularity at best : Supreme Court.
        
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    Held "(a) Section 110 of the Land Reforms Act and the notification dated 8.3.94 are valid, and there is no excessive delegation of legislative power on the State Government.

(b) Non-laying of the notification dt.8.3.94 under Section 140 of the Land Reforms Act before the State Legislature is a curable defect and it will not affect the validity of the notification or action taken thereunder.

(c) The Acquisition Act is protected by Article 31A of the Constitution after having obtained the assent of the President and hence immune from challenge under Article 14 or 19 of the Constitution.
(d) There is no repugnancy between the provisions of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 and the Karnataka Land Reforms Act, 1961, and hence no assent of the President is warranted under Article 254(2) of the Constitution.

(e) Public purpose is a pre-condition for deprivation of a person from his property under Article 300A and the right to claim compensation is also inbuilt in that Article and when a person is deprived of his property the State has to justify both the grounds which may depend on scheme of the statute, legislative policy, object and purpose of the legislature and other related factors.

(f) Statute, depriving a person of his property is, therefore, amenable to judicial review on grounds hereinbefore discussed. 144.-Supreme Court
        
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    Seniority in Services : For the reasons aforesaid this Court holds that for determination of seniority of the officers who were recommended on the same date, age is the only valid and fair basis as such their seniority should be decided on the basis of age of the candidates who have been recommended.-Supreme Court.         
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    Determination of Age under Juvenile Act : "We are satisfied that the entry relating to date of birth entered in the mark sheet is one of the valid proof of evidence for determination of age of an accused person.

The School Leaving Certificate is also a valid proof in determining the age of the accused person.

Further, the date of birth mentioned in the High School mark sheet produced by the appellant has duly been corroborated by the School Leaving Certificate of the appellant of Class X and has also been proved by the statement of the clerk of Nehru High School, Dadheru, Khurd- O-Kalan and recorded by the Board.

.... Accordingly, the appellant was a juvenile on the date of occurrence that is 04.06.2007 as alleged in the FIR dated 04.06.2007.

We are also satisfied that Rule 12 of the Rules which was brought in pursuance of the Act describes four categories of evidence which have been provided in which preference has been given to school certificate over the medical report"- Supreme Court.
        
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    Article 136 of the Constitution -
"...this Court will be extremely loath to upset the judgment of conviction which is confirmed in appeal.
However, if it is found that the appreciation of evidence in a case, which is entirely based on circumstantial evidence, is vitiated by serious errors and on that account miscarriage of justice has been occasioned, then the Court will certainly interfere even with the concurrent findings recorded by the Trial court and the High Court.,
[Bharat Vs. State of M.P. 2003 (3) SCC 106] - Followed.-Supreme Court - Dated 13/07/2011.
        
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    " But in no event, the illegal recovery can be the foundation of a successful conviction under the provisions of Section 21 of the (NDPS) Act."- Supreme Court - Dated 07.07.2011. b>         
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    Excercising jurisdiction under Article 136 Constitution of India : "However, if this Court is of the opinion that the acquittal is not based on a reasonable view, then it may review the entire material and there will be no limitation on this Cour`s jurisdiction under Article 136 to come to a just decision quashing the acquittal"- 1985(4) SCC 476 para 45; 1996(7) SCC 471 para 4 - Followed.-Supreme Court- Dated 24/05/2011.         
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    Evidence of interested witness - Appreciation thereof - can be relied upon :"in the case of Namdeo v. State of Maharashtra [(2007) 14 SCC 150] and in the case of State of Maharashtra v. Ahmed Shaikh Babajan and Others [(2009) 14 SCC 267] which dealt with the question of appreciation of evidence of interested witnesses. Both those decisions follow the well-settled principle that just because evidence is given by the interested persons that is no ground for discarding the same. We have already held that in the instant case, the evidence given by PWs 5, 6, 7 and 8 is quite cogent and clearly established the prosecution case."- Supreme Court - Dated 16/05/2011.         
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    "We warn policemen that they will not be excused for committing murder in the name of `encounter' on the pretext that they were carrying out the orders of their superior officers or politicians, however high. In the Nuremburg trials the Nazi war criminals took the plea that `orders are orders', nevertheless they were hanged. If a policeman is given an illegal order by any superior to do a fake `encounter', it is his duty to refuse to carry out such illegal order, otherwise he will be charged for murder, and if found guilty sentenced to death. The `encounter' philosophy is a criminal philosophy, and all policemen must know this. Trigger happy policemen who think they can kill people in the name of `encounter' and get away with it should know that the gallows await them."-SUPREME COURT - Dated 13th.May,2011.         
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    POLICE ENCOUNTERS: "We warn policemen that they will not be excused for committing murder in the name of `encounter' on the pretext that they were carrying out the orders of their superior officers or politicians, however high. In the Nuremburg trials the Nazi war criminals took the plea that `orders are orders', nevertheless they were hanged. If a policeman is given an illegal order by any superior to do a fake `encounter', it is his duty to refuse to carry out such illegal order, otherwise he will be charged for murder, and if found guilty sentenced to death. The `encounter' philosophy is a criminal philosophy, and all policemen must know this. Trigger happy policemen who think they can kill people in the name of `encounter' and get away with it should know that the gallows await them."-SUPREME COURT - Dated 13/05/2011.         
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    Appointment of DGC/ADGC (Criminal)- Right of their renewal discussed in the light of prevailing judgements of Apex Court: Supreme Court Dated 4/5/2011         
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    The plaintiff in a suit for specific performance, cannot obviously succeed unless he proved that he was ready and willing to perform the contract. The exhaustive correspondence between the parties clearly discloses the respective stands of the parties. Even the prayer in the plaint shows that the appellant was not ready to pay the entire balance of Rs.34,00,000/- as agreed under the agreement of sale but that the plaintiff insisted upon the appellant to pay the municipal taxes before the sale, as a condition for sale. If appellant was not willing to pay Rs.34 lakhs at the time of sale, as specifically agreed under the agreement of sale, the appellant could not claim that it was ready and willing to perform its obligations. As noticed above, after appreciating the entire evidence, learned Single Judge and Division Bench of the High Court have recorded a finding that the appellant was not ready and willing and consequently dismissed the suit. Supreme Court of India- Dated: 04:09:2011         
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    Petitioner submits matter be considered by a larger Bench as the petition raises the following issues of Constitutional importance: (1) Whether the aforesaid two verdicts, viz. the 7-Judge Bench and 9-Judge Bench decisions of this Court referred to above really amount to amending Article 124(2) of the Constitution? (2) Whether there is any `Collegium' system for appointing Supreme Court or High Court Judges in the Constitution? 3 (3) Whether the Constitution can be amended by a judicial verdict or it can only be amended by Parliament in accordance with Article 368? (4) Whether the Constitutional scheme was that the Supreme Court and High Court Judges can be appointed by mutual discussions and mutual consensus between the judiciary and the executive; or whether the judiciary can alone appoint Judges of the Supreme Court and High Courts? (5) Whether the word `consultation' in Article 224 means `concurrence'? (6) Whether by judicial interpretation words in the Constitution can be made redundant, as appears to have been done in the aforesaid two decisions which have made consultation with High Court Judges redundant while appointing a Supreme Court Judge despite the fact that it is permissible on the clear language of Article 124(2)? (7) Whether the clear language of Article 124(2) can be altered by judicial verdicts and instead of allowing the President of India to consult such Judges of the Supreme Court as he deems necessary (including even junior Judges) only the Chief Justice of India and four seniormost Judges of the Supreme Court can alone be consulted while appointing a Supreme Court Judge? (8) Whether there was any convention that the President is bound by the advice of the Chief Justice of India, and whether any such convention (assuming there was one) can prevail over the clear language of Article 124(2)? (9) Whether the opinion of the Chief Justice of India has any primacy in the aforesaid appointments? (10) Whether the aforesaid two decisions should be overruled by a larger Bench?-Supreme Court-Dated 4/4/2011 4         
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    POLICE CUSTODY DEATHS & RAPES-"In spite of the constitutional and statutory provisions aimed at safeguarding the personal liberty and life of a citizen, growing incidence of torture and deaths in police custody has been a disturbing factor. Experience shows that worst violations of human rights take place during the course of investigation, when the police with a view to secure evidence or confession often resorts to third-degree methods including torture and adopts techniques of screening arrest by either not recording the arrest or describing the deprivation of liberty merely as a prolonged interrogation. A reading of the morning newspapers almost everyday carrying reports of dehumanising torture, assault, rape and death in custody of police or other governmental agencies is indeed depressing. The increasing incidence of torture and death in custody has assumed such alarming proportions that it is affecting the credibility of the rule of law and the administration of criminal justice system. The community rightly feels perturbed. Societys cry for justice becomes louder. Custodial death is perhaps one of the worst crimes:SUPREME COURT OF INDIA-Dated 29/03/2011.         
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      Applicability of section 34 I.P.C. read with 302 - which accused actually caused the murder not certain But It is clear that all the three accused persons had taken part in the beating of deceased Deepak and all the accused persons dragged him   in the room and closed the door.
Therefore, it was up to the accused persons to explain as to how Deepak died. It is very clear that all the three accused persons had acted with common intention of causing the death and, therefore, all the three accused persons would be guilty with the aid of Section 34, IPC. The High Court has rightly held them guilty: Supreme Court.
        
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    On the basis of the materials on record, the enquiry officer held the writ petitioner guilty with which the disciplinary authority as also the appellate authority agreed. It is well settled that High Court while exercising the power of judicial review from the order of the disciplinary authority do not act as a Court of appeal and appraise evidence. It interferes with the finding of enquiry officer only when the finding is found to be perverse. We are of the opinion that the Division Bench of the High Court erred in setting aside the order of learned Single Judge and quashing the order of compulsory retirement. The finding recorded by the enquiry officer is based on the materials on record and on proper appreciation of evidence which cannot be said to be perverse calling for interference by the High Court in exercise of its power of judicial review. SUPREME COURT OF INDIA-ORDER DATED 28 FEB 2011         
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    Order to conduct Trial Expediously- Supreme Court of India-Order Dated 28 Feb 2011         
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    The appellant filed a revision before the High Court which was dismissed, affirming the conviction and sentence of the appellant under Sections 420 and 471 of the I.P.C. Admittedly, the entire amount of Rs.60,000/- involved in the case, has been deposited by the appellant. The Chief Executive Officer of the Zila Parishad, Beed, has filed an application before this Court in which it is mentioned that since the entire amount has been deposited by the appellant, they have no objection if the sentence under Section 420 of the I.P.C. is compounded. The alleged incident took place 23 years ago and the appellant has already undergone a part of the sentence. We have heard the learned counsel for the appellant, learned counsel for the State and learned counsel for the complainant. In our considered view, ends of justice would meet if, while upholding the conviction of the appellant, the sentence is reduced to the period already undergone by him. We direct accordingly. This order is subject to the appellant”“s paying additionally a fine of Rupees One Lakh within six weeks from today. This appeal is disposed of with these observations and directions. In case the amount of fine, as directed above is not deposited by the appellant, then this order would be of no avail to the appellant and he would have to serve out the remaining period of sentence.         
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    The Chief Executive Officer of the Zila Parishad, Beed, has filed an application before this Court in which it is mentioned that since the entire amount has been deposited by the appellant, they have no objection if the sentence under Section 420 of the I.P.C. is compounded. The alleged incident took place 23 years ago and the appellant has already undergone a part of the sentence.-Supreme Court Allowed the request.         
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    the decision of the High Court, permitting the State Govern- ment to continue with the recruitment process, initiated on the basis of the Amendment Rules, 2005 which have been declared by it to be illegal is clearly indefensible. Having clearly held that ““the requirement of ad- herence to the Statutory Regulations framed by the NCTE cannot be left to be determined at the discretion of the authorities of the State Govern- ment and that there was no compelling reason with the State to justify a departure from the Statutory Regulations, any action under illegal rules would be null and void”“, the High Court could not have permitted the State Government to perpetuate an illegality. To say the least, we are equally amazed by the stand of the State Government. Having failed to sustain the Amendment Rules, 2005 before the High Court, it would be improper for the State to go ahead with the recruitments under the said amended Rules which have been declared null and void, particularly when the decision of the High Court on that issue has not been ques- tioned by it. We are of the view that the impugned observation by the High Court would be clearly inimical to the rule of law. While it is trite that Courts can exercise judicial discretion in moulding the relief, however, such discretion cannot be exercised to perpetuate and encour- age an illegality.         
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    The High Court overlooked that what section 31(5) contemplates is not merely the delivery of any kind of a copy of the award but a copy of the award that is duly signed by the members of the arbitral tribunal. ---In the facts of the case the appellants would appear to be deriving undue advantage due to the omission of the arbitrator to give them a signed copy of the award coupled with the supply of a copy of the award to them by the claimant-respondent but that would not change the legal position and it would be wrong to tailor the law according to the facts of a particular case. ---In the light of the discussion made above this appeal must succeed.         
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    Having bestowed our anxious consideration, we are constrained to hold that the impugned judgment deserves to be set aside on the short ground that while deciding the case, the Tribunal has ignored the specific directions issued by this Court, vide order dated 30th August, 2001. It is evident from the impugned order, in particular from paras 15 and 16 that the Tribunal has not appreciated the facts obtaining in the present case in their correct perspective, which has resulted in vitiating its decision on the question of leviability of import duty. Although, from para 14 of the impugned order it is evident that the Tribunal was conscious of the direction of this Court that it was required to first record the correct facts and then in the factual perspective locate and apply the relevant law, yet in the very next paragraph it proceeds to hold that when it is accepted that Notification No. 118/59-Cus. did not exist at the time of clearance of the vessel from the ship yard, the persistent plea that the ship was manufactured in a warehouse located in India and therefore, it attracted 8 1994 Supp (3) SCC 606 9 (2009) 14 SCC 342 excise duty alone need not be considered at all. In our opinion, in light of the decision and directions of this Court in C.A. 1998 of 2000, judicial discipline obliged the Tribunal to examine the entire legal issue after ascertaining the foundational facts, regardless of its earlier view in the matter. Therefore, the decision of the Tribunal cannot be sustained         
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    The Trial Court to conduct the trial of the case on day-to-day basis and conclude the same as expeditiously as possible. Supreme Court of India- Dated:February 25, 2011.         
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    Learned Solicitor General submits that if the Bank is allowed to appropriate this amount, then he has no objection to the appeal of the appellant being heard on merit by the DRAT. We direct that the Indian Bank would be at liberty to appropriate the amount which is already with the Bank, however, this would be subject to the final decision of the appeal by the DRAT.-- In the facts and circumstances of this case, we direct the DRAT to hear and dispose of the appeal on all questions of law, as expeditiously as possible, in any event, within two months from the date of the communication of this order.--Supreme Court of India- Dated:February 25, 2011.         
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    where the appeal is against a conviction and sentence of death or of imprisonment, and the appellant dies during the pendency of the appeal, any of his near relatives may, within thirty days of the death of the appellant, apply to the Appellate Court for leave to continue the appeal; and if leave is granted, the appeal shall not abate; (b) the power to grant leave to continue the appeal is conferred on the court and not on the Registrar under Order VI of the Supreme Court Rules, 1966.--Supreme Court Of India- Order Dated:February 25, 2011         
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    On a consideration of the matter it cannot be said that there is no disproportion or even a sizeable disproportion.....There are also other possible errors in the calculations in regard to point (c). The finding becomes inescapable that the assets were in excess of the known sources of income. But on the question whether the extent of the disproportion is such as to justify a conviction for criminal misconduct...., a somewhat liberal view requires to be taken of what proportion of assets in excess of the known sources of income constitutes ““disproportion”“ for purposes of Section 5(1)(e) of the Act         
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    The pressures on state executive and judicial officers charged with the administration of the criminal law are great. But it is precisely the predictability of those pressures that makes imperative a resolute loyalty to the guarantees that the Constitution extends to us all. Order Dated-24-2-2011         
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    It is by now a settled law that the exemption notification has to be construed strictly and there has to be strict interpretation of the same by reading the same literally. In this connection reference can be made to the decision of this Court in Collector of Customs (Preventive), Amritsar vs. Malwa Industries Limited reported at (2009) 12 SCC 735 as also to the decision in Kartar Rolling Mills vs. Commissioner of Central Excise, New Delhi reported at (2006) 4 SCC 772 wherein also it was held by this Court that finding recorded by the Tribunal and the two authorities below are findings of fact and such findings in absence of evidence on record to the contrary is not subject to interference. In order to get benefit of such notification granting exemption the claimant has to show that he satisfies the eligibility criteria. Since the Tribunal and the authorities below have categorically held that the appellant does not satisfy the eligibility criteria on the basis of the evidence on record, therefore, we hold that the said exemption Notification is not applicable to the case of the appellants.         
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    An order passed by the Settlement Commission could be interfered with only if the said order is found to be contrary to any provisions of the Act. So far findings of the fact recorded by Commission or question of facts are concerned, the same is not open for examination either by the High Court or by the Supreme Court. In the present case the order of the Settlement Commission clearly indicates that the said order, particularly, with regard to the imposition of simple interest @ 10 per cent per annum was passed in accordance with the provisions of Rule 14 but the High Court wrongly interpreted the said Rule and thereby arrived at an erroneous finding.

So far as the second issue with respect to interest on Rs. 50 lacs is concerned, the same being a factual issue should not have been gone into by the High Court exercising the writ jurisdiction and the High Court should not have substituted its own opinion against the opinion of the Settlement Commission when the same was not challenged on merits.

In that view of the matter, we set aside the order passed by the Punjab & Haryana High Court by the impugned judgment and order and restore the order of the Settlement Commission leaving the parties to bear their own costs. ORDER DATED-February 21, 2011.
        
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    HELD--We have heard learned counsel for the parties and we are of the considered opinion that the Division Bench of the High Court should not have passed the impugned order for deposit of Rs.20,00,000/- for each of the appeals when the Appellate Authority had directed the appellant to make pre- deposit for Rs.5,00,000/- for both the appeals. The second proviso to sub-section (1) of Section 15 of the Act states that in the case of an appeal against a decision or order imposing a penalty or redemption charges, no such appeal shall be entertained unless the amount of the penalty or redemption charges has been deposited by the appellant. The third proviso to sub-section (1) of Section 15 of the Act, however, states ““where the Appellate Authority is of opinion that the deposit to be made will cause undue hardship to the appellant, it may, at its discretion, dispense with such deposit either unconditionally or subject to such conditions as it may impose.”“ Hence, under the Act discretion is vested in the Appellate Authority to dispense with a pre-deposit of penalty either unconditionally or subject to such condition as the Appellate Authority may impose. If in exercise of such discretion, the Appellate Authority in the present case dispensed with the pre-deposit penalty of Rs.1,30,00,000/- in each of the two appeals subject to the appellant depositing a sum of Rs.5,00,000/-, the Division Bench of the Delhi High Court ought not to have enhanced the amount of pre-deposit to Rs.20,00,000/- for each of the two appeals.

As the two appeals of the appellant have not been heard on merits, we set aside the impugned order of the Division Bench of the High Court of Delhi and the order of the learned Single Judge and direct that in case the appellant deposits the sum of Rs.5,00,000/- as directed by the Appellate Authority within two months from today, the two appellate orders of the Appellate Authority will stand quashed and the appeal will be heard on merits afresh by the Appellate Authority.

With the aforesaid directions, the appeals are allowed. No costs- ORDER DATED- February 21, 2011.
        
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    HELD--The High Court has gone on the premise that once the Appellant have themselves extended the benefit to the Respondent they cannot further classify the benefit of investment up to the date of amendment, putting the unit in the negative list. It appears that the High Court while arriving at the said finding has failed to appreciate the fact that the case of the Respondent was considered for exemption in the light of the judgment passed by this Court in the Mahabir Vegetable case (supra) reported at (2006) 3 SCC 620 wherein it was held that the Respondent is entitled to exemption. However, the issue of quantum was kept open. The High Court while giving the said finding has altogether closed itself in considering the said issue and on the contrary has held that only because the Respondent has been considered for grant of exemption, there is no issue of quantum and the Respondent is entitled to entire exemption. In our opinion the said finding is not in line with the observations made by this Court in the Mahabir Vegetable case (supra) reported at (2006) 3 SCC 620. The quantification made by the LLSC is in accord with the ratio laid by this Court.
Accordingly, we allow the appeal and set aside the impugned judgment passed by the High Court leaving the parties to bear their own costs.- ORDER DATED February 21, 2011.
        
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    HELD- Counsel appearing for the appellant also submitted that the punishment awarded to the appellant was too severe and harsh considering the nature and the degree of the offences established. The appellant belongs to Air Force, which is a disciplined service. The allegations made against the appellant were serious. The charge number (2) against him stood proved. The said charge is also serious and we are of the considered opinion that for an offence of the aforesaid nature the authority was justified in awarding him the punishment of dismissal from service. -- The scale of punishment provided in Section 73 of the Act clearly confirms the position that dismissal from service is a lesser punishment than that of detention in prison. By commuting the punishment of three months detention and imposing the punishment of dismissal, the Confirming Authority has strictly followed the scale of punishment provided for in Section 73 of the Act and, therefore, there is no justification for any interference with the nature of punishment awarded to the appellant-APPEAL DISMISSED- ORDER DATED- FEB 21, 2011         
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    Held- The only ground on which Article 14 has been put forward by the learned counsel for the respondent is that the fixation of the cut-off date for payment of the revised benefits under the two notifications concerned was arbitrary and it resulted in denying arrears of payments to certain Sections of the employees. This argument is no longer res integra. It has been held in a catena of judgments that fixing of a cut-off date for granting of benefits is well within the powers of the Government as long as the reasons therefor are not arbitrary and are based on some rational consideration.”“ -- We have sympathies for the appellant but, in a society governed by Rule of law, sympathies cannot override the Rules and Regulations. We may recall the observations made by this Court while considering the issue of compassionate appointment in public service. In Life Insurance Corporation of India v. Asha Ramachhandra Ambekar and Anr. (1994) 2 SCC 718, wherein the Court observed: ““The High Courts and the Administrative Tribunals cannot confer benediction impelled by sympathetic consideration.... Yielding to instinct will tend to ignore the cold logic of law. It should be remembered that ““law is the embodiment of all wisdom”“. Justice according to law is a principle as old as the hills. The Courts are to administer law as they find it, however, inconvenient it may be.- Order Dated Feb 21 ,2011         
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    HELD--The proliferating unaided private colleges, may need a full complement of students for their comfortable sustenance (meeting the cost of running the college and paying the staff etc.). But that cannot be at the risk of quality of education. To give an example, if 35% is the minimum passing marks in a qualifying examination, can it be argued by colleges that the minimum passing marks in the qualifying examination should be reduced to only 25 or 20 instead of 35 on the ground that the number of students/candidates who pass the examination are not sufficient to fill their seats? Reducing the standards to `fill the seats”“ will be a dangerous trend which will destroy the quality of education. If there are large number of vacancies, the remedy lies in (a) not permitting new colleges; (b) reducing the intake in existing colleges; (c) improving the infrastructure and quality of the institution to attract more students. Be that as it may. The need to fill the seats cannot be permitted to override the need to maintain quality of education. Creeping commercialization of education in the last few years should be a matter of concern for the central bodies, states and universities. 13. No student or college, in the teeth of the existing and prevalent rules of the State and the University can say that such rules should be ignored, whenever there are unfilled vacancies in colleges. In fact the State/University, may, in spite of vacancies, continue with the higher eligibility criteria to maintain better standards of higher education in the State or in the colleges affiliated to the University. Determination of such standards, being part of the academic policy of the University, are beyond the purview of judicial review, unless it is established that such standards are arbitrary or `adversely affect”“ the standards if any fixed by the Central Body under a Central enactment. The order of the Division Bench is therefore unsustainable. ORDER DATED:FEB 18, 2011         
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    HELD-- a permanent disability certificate by the said Medical Board. Therefore, the said certificate clearly establishes that Appellant had sustained permanent disability to his own body to the extent of 50% and even after several surgeries; he was not able to control his urination. We can well appreciate and imagine the problems and difficulties of a young boy aged 16 years, who is not able to control his urination and spoils his clothes even while attending school. We have been given to understand that he is required to go with additional sets of clothings so that he could change the same, in case they are spoiled. This is the state of affairs even as on date. We do not doubt the genuineness and correctness of the aforesaid certificate. Even otherwise, Respondents have also not contended that this certificate is forged or fabricated and has been obtained with an intention to get compensation-APPEAL ALLOWED- ORDER DATED- FEB 18, 2011         
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    HELD--the Tribunal should have considered the prospect of future income while computing compensation but the Tribunal has not done that. In the appeal, which was filed by the appellants before the High Court, the High Court instead of maintaining the amount of compensation, granted by the Tribunal, reduced the same. In doing so, the High Court had not given any reason. The High Court introduced the concept of split multiplier and departed from the multiplier used by the Tribunal without disclosing any reason therefore. The High Court has also not considered the clear and corroborative evidence about the prospect of future increment of the deceased. When the age of the deceased is between 51 and 55 years the multiplier is 11, which is specified in the II Column in the II Schedule in the Motor Vehicles Act, and the Tribunal has not committed any error by accepting the said multiplier. This Court also fails to appreciate why the High Court chose to apply the multiplier of 6.-SUPREME COURT OF INDIA -ORDER DATED : FEB 18 2011         
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    This is, however, a clear case where the admissions of the seven appellants took place due to the fault of the rule-making authority in not making the State Rules, 2008 in conformity of the MCI Regulations. For this fault of the rule-making authority if the appellants are discharged from the MBBS course, they will suffer grave injustice. On the peculiar facts of the case, we are thus of the view that this is a fit case where this Court should exercise its power under Article 142 of the Constitution to do complete justice between parties. In Delhi Judicial Service Association, Tis Hazari Court, Delhi v. State of Gujarat and Others. [(1991) 4 SCC 406] after examining the width of this power under Article 142 of the Constitution, this Court held: ““No enactment made by Central or State legislature can limit or restrict the power of this Court under Article 142 of the Constitution, though while exercising power under Article 142 of the Constitution, the court must take into consideration the statutory provisions regulating the matter in dispute. What would be the need of ““complete justice”“ in a cause or matter would depend upon the facts and circumstances of each case and while exercising that power the Court would take into consideration the express provisions of a substantive statute. Once this Court has taken seisin of a case, cause or matter, it has power to pass any order or issue direction as may be necessary to do complete justice in the matter. --In the facts of the present case, we have found that the appellants were not to be blamed for having secured admission in the MBBS course and the fault was entirely of the rule-making authority in making the 2008 Rules and the appellants have gone through the pains of appearing in the common entrance test and have been selected on the basis of their merit and admitted into the MBBS course in the college in accordance with the State Rules, 2008 and have pursued their studies for a year. Hence, even though under the MCI Regulations the appellants were not eligible for admission to the MBBS course in the academic year 2008-2009, for the purpose of doing complete justice in the matter before us, we direct that the admissions of the appellants to the MBBS course in the college during the academic year 2008-2009 will not be disturbed. This direction shall not, however, be treated as a precedent- SUPREME COURT OF INDIA - ORDER DATED- FEB 18,2011         
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    The liability of the Insurance Company to pay compensation was limited to six persons travelling inside the vehicle only and that the liability to pay the others was that of the owner, we, in this case, are faced with the same problem as had surfaced in Anjana Shyam's case (supra). The number of persons to be compensated being in excess of the number of persons who could validly be carried in the vehicle, the question which arises is one of apportionment of the amounts to be paid. Since there can be no pick and choose method to identify the five passengers, excluding the driver, in respect of whom compensation would be payable by the Insurance Company, to meet the ends of justice we may apply the procedure adopted in Baljit Kaur”“s case (supra) and direct that the Insurance Company should deposit the total amount of compensation awarded to all the claimants and the amounts so deposited be disbursed to the claimants in respect to their claims, with liberty to the Insurance Company to recover the amounts paid by it over and above the compensation amounts payable in respect of the persons covered by the Insurance Policy from the owner of the vehicle, as was directed in Baljit Kaur”“s case- SUPREME COURT OF INDIA-ORDER DATED: FEB 18,2011         
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    The Dean of King Edward Memorial Hospital as well as Ms. Pinky Virani (who claims to be the next friend of the petitioner) are directed to intimate the brother(s)/sister(s) or other close relatives of the petitioner that the case will be listed on 2nd March, 2011 in the Supreme Court and they can put forward their views before the Court, if they so desire. Learned counsel for the petitioner and the Registry of this Court shall communicate a copy of this Order forthwith to the Dean, KEM Hospital. The Dean, KEM Hospital is requested to file an affidavit stating his views regarding the prayer in this writ petition, and also the condition of the petitioner- SUPREME COURT OF INDIA- ORDER DATED: FEB 18,2011         
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    The import manifest and the bill of entry having been filed before the Collectorate of Customs (Imports) Mumbai, the same having been assessed and clearance for home consumption having been allowed by the proper officer on importers executing bond, undertaking the obligation of export, in our opinion, the Collector of Customs (Preventive), not being a ““proper officer”“ within the meaning of Section 2(34) of the Act, was not competent to issue show cause notice for re- assessment under Section 28 of the Act. Nothing has been brought on record to show that the Collector of Customs (Preventive), who had issued the show cause notices was assigned the functions under Section 28 of the Act as ““proper officer”“ either by the Board or the Collector/Commissioner of Customs. We are convinced that Notifications No. 250-Cus and 251-Cus., both dated 27th August, 1983, issued by the Central Government in exercise of the powers conferred by sub-section (1) of the Section 4 of the Act, appointing Collector of Customs (Preventive) etc. to be the Collector of Customs for Bombay, Thane and Kolaba Districts in the State of Maharashtra did not ipso facto confer jurisdiction on him to exercise power entrusted to the ““proper officers”“ for the purpose of Section 28 of the Act. In that view of the matter, we do not find any substance in the contention of Mr. V. Shekhar, learned Senior Counsel, appearing for the revenue in the second set of appeals, that the source of power to act as a ““proper officer”“ is Sections 4 and 5 of the Act and not sub-section 34 of Section 2 of the Act. The said sections merely authorize the Board to appoint officers of Customs and confer on them the powers and duties to be exercised/discharged by them, but for the purpose of Section 28 of the Act, an officer of customs has to be designated as ““proper officer”“ by assigning the function of levy and collection of duty, by the Board or the Commissioner of Customs. The argument is rejected accordingly. Similarly, revenue’‘‘‘s reliance on the decision of this court in Ram Narain Bishwanath & Ors. (supra) is clearly misplaced. In that case the issue for determination was that when goods imported and cleared at Paradip Port (Orissa State) were seized by the Customs authorities in West Bengal on the allegation that these had been imported on the strength of fictitious licences, whether the customs authorities at Paradip or West Bengal will have the jurisdiction to initiate adjudication proceedings. By a short order it was held that it was for the customs authorities at Paradip to initiate proceedings against the importer. Apart from the fact that none of the statutory provisions were considered in that case, the issue arising for consideration in the present appeals was not the subject matter therein. Thus, the said decision is of no avail to the revenue.- SUPREME COURT OF INDIA- ORDER DATED: FEBRUARY 18, 2011         
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    HELD--With regard to recovery of the pistol, the learned counsel is right that the pistol was recovered from a public place but it was recovered from the place which could not have been easily located by anyone and, therefore, the accused cannot get benefit which the learned counsel wanted him to get. From the memo of recovery, it is clear that the pistol had been hidden by digging earth under a plant of Sarkanda about half a kilometer away from bridge of Ladhuwala Uttar. Thus, it is very clear that the pistol had been hidden by digging earth under the plant of Sarkanda about half a kilometer away on the eastern katcha path from bridge of Ladhuwala Uttar and, therefore, in our opinion, the recovery cannot be said to be from a place which could have been easily accessible to anyone.
--With regard to recovery memo, the mistake committed in writing the word "witness" or "witnesses" can not be said to be so material so as to adversely affect the case of the prosecution. – SUPREME COURT OF INDIA- ORDER DATED:FEB 18,2011
        
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    If the order has re-determined the valuable rights of the parties to the proceeding, whether without issuing any notice or after issuing notice, it is a judgment as per the tests laid down in Khimji's case.         
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    CRIMINAL LAWS-The letter which forms the basis of conviction by the Appellate Court was never produced during the investigation and for the first time produced by the witness during the course of trial, when she appeared as a witness. It is submitted that authenticity of the letter in question has not been proved and hence the appellate Court ought not to have reversed the judgment of acquittal and convicted the appellant. --Moreover, this letter had not been produced before the police during the course of the initial investigation and had been handed over to the police after several months. This fact, as also a reading of the letter, indicates that this was a concocted piece of evidence and the work of a legal mind, as no person would write such a letter meeting all legal requirements for implicating himself and his near relatives, in a claim for dowry. It has also been pointed out that view taken by the Trial Court was one of the possible views which the High Court in appeal ought not to have reversed.-SUPREME COURT OF INDIA- ORDER DATED: FEB 17,2011         
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    CIVIL LAWS--An agreement signed by the parties in the matter of collection of toll. While rejecting the argument of the writ petitioner that he was not liable to pay stamp duty under Article 35(b) read with Section 2(16) of the Act, the Division Bench observed: ““On bare reading of the section it becomes clear that all leases with respect to immovable property would be leases in terms of Section 2(16) but in addition to leases of immovable property in other three categories there would also be lease under category (c) in which any instrument by which tolls of any description are let would be a lease for the purpose of Section 2(16). The instrument by which right to collect toll is conveyed has to be treated as lease for the purposes of Stamp Act. Right to collect toll will never in any circumstances involve immovable property. Basically toll is collected for using a road or bridge and as such neither the road nor the bridge is leased out, only the right to collection is leased out and this right of leasing out the collection is ““lease”“ for the purposes of Stamp Act- APPEAL ALLOWED- SUPREME COURT OF INDIA- ORDER DATED FEB 17, 2011         
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    Civil Laws-There is concurrent finding that a pond exists and the area covered by it varies in the rainy season. In such a case no part of it could have been allotted to anybody for construction of house building or any allied purposes. It is important to notice that the material resources of the community like forests, tanks, ponds, hillock, mountain etc. are nature”“s bounty. They maintain delicate ecological balance. They need to be protected for a proper and healthy environment which enables people to enjoy a quality life which is the essence of the guaranteed right under Article 21 of the Constitution. The Government, including the Revenue Authorities i.e. Respondents 11 to 13, having noticed that a pond is falling in disuse, should have bestowed their attention to develop the same which would, on one hand, have prevented ecological disaster and on the other provided better environment for the benefit of the public at large. Such vigil is the best protection against knavish attempts to seek allotment in non-abadi sites- Appeal Dismissed- SUPREME COURT OF INDIA- ORDER DATED FEB 17, 2011         
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    Electronics Corporation of India Ltd. ...Appellant(s) versus Union of India & Ors. ...Respondent(s) - Case         
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    HELD--In the present case the acquisition proceeding commenced with the notification under Section 4 issued on 06.03.1965 and it culminated in passing of the award by the Collector on 09.07.1980, i.e., before 30.04.1982, the date from which the amending Act 68 of 1984 was made applicable to the pending and subsequent proceedings. Therefore, in terms of the law laid down by the Constitution Bench decision of this Court in the case of K.S. Paripoornan (supra) the respondents are not entitled to the benefit of Section 23(1A).

All the appeals, therefore, are partly allowed to the aforesaid extent and disposed of leaving the parties to bear their own costs. -SUPREME COURT OF INDIA-ORDER DATED FEB 17,2011
        
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    HELD--The High Court unfortunately took a very technical view in the matter of applying the multiplier. The High Court cannot keep out of its consideration the claim of the daughter of the first claimant, since the daughter was impleaded, and was 49 years of age. Admittedly, the deceased was looking after the entire family. In determining the age of the mother, the High Court should have accepted the age of the mother at 65, as given in the claim petition, since there is no controversy on that. By accepting the age of mother at 67, the High Court further reduced the multiplier from 6 to 5, even if we accept the reasoning of the High Court to be correct. The reasoning of the High Court is not correct in view of the ratio in Sarla Verma (supra). Following the same the High Court should have proceeded to compute the compensation on the age of the deceased.

Thus, the finding of the High Court is contrary to the ratio in Sarla Verma (supra), which is the leading decision on this question and which we follow.

This Court, therefore, cannot sustain the High Court judgment and is constrained to set aside the same. The award of MACT is restored.

The appeal is allowed. No costs
        
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    HELD--The language of the circular dated 13.12.1995 makes it crystal clear that the Government took a fresh decision in supersession of earlier instructions that promotion to Grade-IV may be given from amongst officials in Grade-III on the basis of their seniority in the basic grade. Hence, the decision of the Government to make promotions to Grade-IV on the basis of their seniority in the basic grade could take effect only from 13.12.1995 and not from a prior date and the respondents, who had filed O.A. No.2484 of 1997 and O.A. No.2099 of 1997 in the Central Administrative Tribunal could not claim any promotion to Grade-IV on the basis of their seniority in the basic cadre with effect from any date prior to 13.12.1995. The Central Administrative Tribunal was, therefore, not right in allowing O.A. No.2484 of 1997 and O.A. No.2099 of 1997 by order dated 11.08.2000, directing the Government to consider promoting the applicants to Grade-IV with effect from the dates their immediate juniors in the basic grade seniority were so promoted subject to their being found fit with consequential benefits of seniority as well as arrears of pay and allowance and of retiral benefits in the case of those of the applicants in the O.As. who had retired on superannuation. In our considered opinion, the High Court ought to have interfered with the decision of the Tribunal. 18. We accordingly allow these appeals and set aside the impugned orders dated 22.05.2003 of the High Court and the common order dated 11.08.2000 of the Central Administrative Tribunal in O.A. No. 2484 of 1997 and O.A. No.2099 of 1997. The two O.As. stand rejected. There will be no order as to costs.- SUPREME COURT OF INDIA- ORDER DATED: FEB 17, 2011         
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    Held- The appellant has preferred this appeal against the final judgment dated 10.09.2007 before this Court. This appeal is also barred by limitation of 114 days. There is no satisfactory explanation for condonation of delay before this Court also. -Supreme Court of India -Order Dated: Feb 17,2011 The Union of India ought to have been careful particularly in filing this Civil Appeal because the Division Bench, by the impugned order, has dismissed the appeal before it on the ground of delay. It is a matter of deep anguish and distress that majority of the matters filed by the Union of India are hopelessly barred by limitation and no satisfactory explanations exist for condoning inordinate delay in filing those cases. On consideration of the totality of the facts and circumstances, we are constrained to dismiss this appeal on the ground of delay. However, in the larger interest, we are keeping the question of law open         
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    Held- It is, therefore, difficult for us to uphold the impugned judgment and order of the Division Bench of the High Court and hence we quash and set aside the same. If, however, the writ petitioner, respondents herein, has/have any other alternative remedy or forum to claim allotment of the land, they obviously will have to first of all get the letter of the State Government quashed and set aside which has ordered stopping the allotment of rehabilitation land forthwith. Unless the respondents succeed in doing so, no allotment of the land could have been made specially without any enquiry as to whether the predecessor-in-interest had left any land at all in Pakistan when he migrated to India. Besides this, learned counsel for the appellants-State further informed that the writ petitioner, predecessor-in- interest of the respondents herein had already been allotted land under the rehabilitation scheme way back in the year 1952 and, therefore, claim for allotment for the second time should not have been allowed by the High Court contrary to the government instructions. We find force in this submission also, and, therefore, this aspect was required to be examined and enquired before any order was passed in favour of the respondents-claimants- Supreme Court of India- Order Dated Feb 15, 2011         
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    Held- Supreme Court of India-Order Dated Feb 15, 2011- The DNA test of Rimpa by CDFD, a pioneer institute in Hyderabad matched with that of blood of her parents and brother. The Doctors at AIIMS have put the parts of the deceased girls which have been recovered by the Doctors of AIIMS together. These bodies have been recovered in the presence of the Doctors of AIIMS at the pointing out by the accused Surendra Koli. Thus, recovery is admissible under Section 27 of the Evidence Act.
On the facts of the case we see no reason to interfere with the findings of the trial court and the High Court that the appellant Surendra Koli is guilty of murdering Rimpa Haldar. Both Courts have gone into the evidence in great detail and we have perused the same. The appellant appears to be a serial killer, and these cases in our opinion fall within the category of rarest of the rare cases as laid down in Bachan singh Vs State of Punjab, 1982 SCC 689 which has been subsequently followed in Atbir Vs Government of NCT of Delhi, 2010 SCC (9) 1.
The killings by the appellant Surendra Koli are horrifying and barbaric. He used a definite methodology in committing these murders. He would see small girls passing by the house, and taking advantage of their weakness lure them inside the house no. D-5, Sector 31, Nithari Village, Noida and there he would strangulate them and after killing them he tried to have sex with the body and would then cut off their body parts and eat them. Some parts of the body were disposed off by throwing them in the passage gallery and drain (nala) beside the house. House no. D-5, Sector 31 had become a virtual slaughter house, where innocent children were regularly butchered.
In our opinion, this case clearly falls within the category of rarest of rare case and no mercy can be shown to the appellant Surendra Koli.
The appeal is, therefore, dismissed.
        
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    Held-Supreme Court of India- Order Dated: Feb 15, 2011-Coming to the case at hand we are of the opinion that the High Court was not justified in imposing the extreme penalty of death upon the appellants. We say so for reasons more than one. Firstly, because the appellants are not professional killers. Even according to the prosecution they were only a part of the coal mafia active in the region indulging in theft of coal from the collieries. The deceased being opposed to such activities appears to have incurred their wrath and got killed. Secondly, because even when the deceased was a politician there was no political angle to his killing. Thirdly, because while all culpable homicides amounting to murder are inhuman, hence legally and ethically unacceptable yet there was nothing particularly brutal, grotesque, diabolical, revolting or dastardly in the manner of its execution so as to arouse intense and extreme indignation of the community or exhaust depravity and meanness on the part of the assailants to call for the extreme penalty. Fourthly, because there was difference of opinion on the question of sentence to be awarded to the convicts. The Trial Court did not find it to be a rarest of rare case and remained content with the award of life sentence only which sentence the High Court enhanced to death. Considering all these circumstances, the death sentence awarded to the appellants in our opinion deserves to be commuted to life imprisonment.-Appeal Allowed         
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    HELD- In view of the fact that the inspection and verification in regard to renewal of permission for the second, third, fourth and fifth years will be restricted only to the consideration of the additional faculty and additional infrastructure, it may not be necessary to apply the lengthy time schedule prescribed for initial permission, to renewal of permissions during the next four years. The DCI Regulations presently contemplate almost similar time schedules in regard to applications for establishment of new dental colleges, for opening of higher courses of study, for increase of admission capacity, and for renewal of permissions, with 15th July being the last date both for grant of permission or renewal of permission. DCI and Central Government may consider amendment to the DCI Regulations suitably to provide for a shorter and distinct time schedule for renewal of permissions, so that the dental colleges could file applications till end of February and the process of grant or refusal of renewal is completed by 15th of June. Conclusion 22. In view of the above, these writ petitions are allowed as follows : (a) The condition imposed by the Central Government (requiring the dental colleges to secure appropriate orders from this court approving the renewals of permission) in the letters of renewal of permission issued to the petitioners in July/August/September, 2010, is quashed; (b) It is however declared that the renewal of permissions issued by Central Government to the petitioners for the academic year 2010-2011, are valid.- SUPREME COURT OF INDIA- ORDER DATED: FEB 15,2011         
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    Held- Learned senior counsel appearing for the respondents submits that the suit is pending before the Small Causes Court, Pune. We direct the proceedings in the suit to continue, however, no final order in the suit be passed until the disposal of the writ petition to be filed by the appellants before the Bombay High Court. In the facts and circumstances of the case, we request the Bombay High Court to dispose of the writ petition, if filed (by the appellants within four weeks from today) as expeditiously as possible, in any event, within a period of one year from the date of filing of the writ petition. In case, the writ petition is not filed within a period of four weeks, this order would be of no avail to the appellants- Supreme Court of India -Order Dated: Feb 15 2011         
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    The learned counsel for the appellant submitted that there was no justification for the High Court, in exercise of power of judicial review, to interfere with the findings of the revisional authority and the punishment imposed, which had been accepted by the Administrative Tribunal It is impermissible in law.
--The revisional authority did not interfere with the findings recorded by the appellate authority that respondent was not guilty of charges 2,3,4 and 5. The appellate authority found that as only charges 1,6 and 7 were proved and the other charges relating mis- appropriation of additional fare were not proved, the punishment of dismissal was excessive and consequently set aside the same and imposed a lesser punishment of reduction in rank.
-On the facts and circumstances, the said order of the appellate authority did not call for interference and that too in exercise of power of revision.
Therefore we are of the view that the High Court was justified in restoring the decision of the appellate authority imposing a lesser punishment.
However while the High Court was justified in restoring the order of reinstatement with imposition of lesser punishment of reduction in service with continuity of service, the High Court was not justified in granting the reliefs of seniority and 25% back wages. When the High Court has upheld the finding that the respondent was guilty of charges 1,6 and 7, any direction for back wages would amount to rewarding the guilty, which is not permissible. Nor will he be entitled to restoration of his seniority as ordered by the High Court.
we allow this appeal in part and set aside the order of the High Court awarding backwages of 25% and restoring the seniority.- Supreme Court of India –Order Dated :Feb 14, 2011
        
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    Appeal-Civil Laws-The appellant has pointed out that apart from being a Member of the Bar, he is a former President of the Student Union of the AMU, former elected Member of AMU Court, Life Member of AMU Old Boys Association and Donor Life Member of the AMU-- He had produced documents in support of the said averments. The said averments are not shown to be false. The appellant claims that his only interest in filing the writ petition was to ensure that AMU continues to be an Institution of academic excellence and that no action of the University should dilute its academic excellence. On the other hand, the respondents contend that the writ petition was filed with the oblique motive of maligning the Vice Chancellor of the University. It is not necessary to examine that aspect now-Held- he has sufficient interest to file the writ petition in public interest. The High Court ought not to have dismissed the public interest litigation only on the ground of locus standi of appellant to file the writ petition. Appeal Allowed-Supreme Court of India-Order Dated: Feb 14 2011         
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    Appeal- Sec 302-Indian Penal Code-Medical Officer of Mauza Burdwan Medical College, opined that the death was due to the effect of the injuries as noted anti-mortem in nature; that all the injuries as noted in the post mortem examination report might be caused if a person pushed against the wall and it may be homicidal in nature- Appeal Dismised- Supreme Court of India- Order Dated Feb 14, 2011         
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    Appeal- Civil Laws- Post of Ticket Collector is categorised in Annexure IV in Class B-2 but while doing so the underlying object of division of staff into three broad groups A, B and C for vision tests of candidates and of serving Railway employees in non-Gazetted Railway services seems to have been overlooked. Broadly, Class B-2 covers a certain staff in workshops and engine rooms engaged on duties. It has been so done because failing eyesight may endanger themselves or other employees from moving parts of the machinery and crane drivers on open line. This is in consonance with the objective of group B viz; `in the interest of the employee himself or his fellow workers or both”“. Insofar as Ticket Collectors are concerned, vision tests for them are not required `in the interest of employee himself or his fellow workers or both”“ as contemplated in group B but it is required in the interest of administration only - the objective contemplated in group C. In this view of the matter, there seems to be no rational basis, in relation to the object set out in Para 510 of IRMM, of categorizing the post of Ticket Collectors under Class B-2 in Annexure IV. However, it is for the respondents to have a fresh look insofar as categorisation of posts pertaining to non-Gazetted Railway services in Annexure IV is concerned. Suffice it to say that categorization of posts for the purpose of vision tests must have nexus with the object set out in Para 510. Having regard to the objective of division of groups/ classes for the purpose of vision tests under Para 510 of IRMM, the post of Ticket Collectors can not be held to be covered by Class B-2 but rather will be covered by Class C-2. Any inconsistency in categorization of Railway posts in Annexure IV, in our view, must not operate against the appellant in getting promotion to the post of Ticket Collector. --the appellant could not have been denied promotion to the post of Ticket Collector as he had passed written test and viva voce and was provisionally selected for the post of Ticket Collector and had been declared medically fit in Class C-2. --Appeal is allowed- Supreme Court of India- Order Dated: Feb 14, 2011         
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    Writ- Transfer Petition- Transfer Petition pending at the District Judge (MACT Court, Gautam Budh Nagar, U.P.) to the competent Court at Pune, Maharashtra. The petitioners allege in the petition that the MACT Court, Gautam Budh Nagar, U.P. has no jurisdiction in the matter. - An order of transfer of a case can be passed where both the courts, namely, the transferor court as well as the transferee court, have jurisdiction to hear the case and the party seeking transfer of the case alleges that the transferee court would be more convenient because the witnesses are available there or for some other reason it will be convenient for the parties to have the case heard by the transferee court. There is no question of transfer of a case which has been filed in a court which has no jurisdiction at all to hear it.-With these observations, the transfer petition is dismissed-Supreme Court of India- Order Dated Feb 14, 2011         
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    In the facts of this case, we deem it appropriate to direct that the appeal, which was dismissed in default for not depositing the amount in time, shall be restored to its original number and be heard expeditiously by the Tribunal.-Supreme Court of India-Order Dated February 11, 2011.         
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    Criminal Laws--Handed over the sample parcel, duly sealed and sample impression of seal to Constable for depositing the same in the office of Chemical Examiner. --None had tampered with the aforesaid case property and the seal which remained in his custody. --Deposited the case property in the office of Chemical Examiner on the same day and tendered receipt. --Report of the Chemical Examiner (Ex. PJ) which indicates that the seals were intact when the sample was received and tallied with the sample impression of the seal.
--It is note worthy that such a report of the Chemical Examiner would be admissible under Section 293 of the Cr.P.C. Considering the aforesaid clear evidence, it cannot be said that there is any infirmity in the link evidence merely because there was a delay of few days in sending the sample to the office of the Chemical Examiner.-Appeal Dismissed- Supreme Court of India –Order Dated-February 11, 2011.
        
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    Civil Laws-Assigning of lesser marks to Sardar Mahinder Singh not only denied him the first place in the panel, but also unjustly and undeservedly gave the first respondent, the first place in the panel. The manner of assigning marks showed a clear intention to favour the first respondent at the cost of the other applicants. It is this finding that persuaded the General Manager of IOC to scrap the selection. The High Court having recorded a finding that the appellant was satisfied about the illegality committed by the selection committee, ought to have rejected the writ petition, as the decision of the appellants to scrap the selection was reasonable and not arbitrary.-Appeal Allowed- Supreme Court of India-Order dated:Feb 14, 2011         
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    Criminal Laws-Appeal-Sections 120-B and 409- IPC, Sections 5(1)(c) and 5(2) -PC Act-- The prosecution has established - a) By awarding both the works of Idamalayar at a very high and exorbitant rate with special conditions having heavy financial implications. b) By reducing the retention and security amount. c) By allowing the contractor to return only fifty per cent of the empty cement bags. Having arrived at such conclusion, - High Court failed to appreciate in its proper sense the materials placed by the prosecution and brushed aside several important items of evidence adduced by the prosecution.- Unable to accept the conclusion of the High Court, namely, ““the proved circumstances are not sufficient to hold that there was conspiracy as alleged by the prosecution”“. - Satisfied that the Special Court after framing various points for consideration and after thorough discussion has accepted the case of the prosecution insofar as the work of driving the surge shaft, lining the surge shaft, balance driving the power tunnel and other allied works of Idamalayar Hydro Electric Power Project at a higher or exorbitant rates to the contractor K.P. Poulose and the accused persons have abused their official positions. -The Special Court has also accepted the prosecution case founding that A1 along with K.P. Poulose, Paul Mundakkal and other accused persons entered into criminal conspiracy and rightly convicted them. -The High Court committed a grave error in acquitting the accused without adverting to the reliable and acceptable evidence adduced by the prosecution.- Appeal Allowed- Supreme Court of India –Order Dated: FEBRUARY 10, 2011         
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    Civil Laws- Appeal- A bare perusal of the said order would also indicate that he has given deductions for the items held as immovable. -The Commissioner having considered the aforesaid issue carefully and after proper scrutiny, the Tribunal was not justified in rejecting the said findings by mere conclusion and without trying to meet the findings recorded by the Commissioner–Appeal Allowed , Set aside order passed by Tribunal and restore the order of Commissioner- Supreme Court of India. –Order Dated:FEBRUARY 10, 2011.         
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    Even assuming, however, that the bus crew ought to have been examined as that would have greatly enhanced the value of the prosecution evidence, but their non-examination case would not mean that the entire prosecution story would fall through as there were several other credible witnesses including an injured one-- The appeal is accordingly dismissed.-Supreme Court of India -Order Dated- 4 Feb 2011.         
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    SUICIDE NOTE- DEFENCE TOOK BY ACCUSED THAT SUICIDE NOTE WRITTEN BY DECEASED-FAILURE TO REBUT THE PRESUMTION THAT HE HAD CAUSED DOWRY DEATH-APPEAL DISMISSED- In the instant case, evidently, the suicide note, Ext.P-2 purported to have been written by Sarla (deceased) had been taken by appellant as his defence while making his statement under section 313 Cr.P.C. Therefore, the onus was on him to establish his defence by leading sufficient evidence to rebut the presumption that he has caused the dowry death. The appellant miserably failed to discharge that onus.--SUPREME COURT OF INDIA, DATED- 14/01/2011         
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    TRANSFER PETITION ALLOWED-CR.P.C-The petitioner has been able to show the circumstances from which it can be reasonably inferred that it has become difficult for the witnesses to safely depose truth because of fear of being haunted by those against whom they have to depose. The reluctance of the witnesses to go to the court at Haridwar in spite of receipt of repeated summons is bound to hamper the course of justice.

If such a situation is permitted to continue, it will pave way for anarchy, oppression, etc., resulting in breakdown of criminal justice system. In order to see that the incapacitation of the eye-witnesses is removed and justice triumphs, it has become necessary to grant the relief claimed in the instant petition. On the facts and in the circumstances of the case this Court is of the opinion that interest of justice would be served if transfer of the case from Haridwar to Delhi is ordered.
        
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    Accused caused single blow in quarrel--Converted from Culpable homicide amounting to Culpable homicide not amounting to murder- SUPREME COURT OF INDIA- DATED-06/01/2011         
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    BAIL- GRANTED-DELAY IN CONCLUDING THE TRAIL-SUPREME COURT OF INDIA -dated--03/01/2011-
In deciding bail applications an important factor which should certainly be taken into consideration by the Court is the delay in concluding the trial. Often this takes several years, and if the accused is denied bail is ultimately acquitted, who will restore so many years of his life spent in custody? Is Article 21 of the constitution, which is the most basic of all the fundamental rights in our Constitution, not violated in such a case? Of course this is not the only factor, but it is certainly one of the important factors in deciding whether to grant bail.
        
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    No Intention - as mentioned U/s 300 IPC- considering the nature of the injuries sustained by the deceased as opined by Medical Expert- the conviction from Section 302 to Section 323 is altered.- SUPREME COURT OF INDIA- dated--03/01/2011         
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    No intention to murder- Section 302 converted into 304 Part-II- SUPREME COURT OF INDIA- dated--03/01/2011         
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    Dyeing Declaration - All witnesses hostiled - Conviction maintained on the basis of dyeing declaration alone : Supreme Court.         
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    Evidence on record - The deceased was subjected to crueltyand harassment by her husband, the appellant herein and the harassment was in connection with the demand of dowry- victim (deceased) died within oneyear and two months of the marriage- to set aside the conviction of the appellant under Section 302 of the Indian Penal Code but in the facts and circumstances of this case we proceed to convict the appellant under Section 304B of the Indian Penal Code and sentence him to 9 years rigorous imprisonment and fine of Rs.10,000/-         
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    Question of revival of the repealed clauses of L.R. Manual in case the substituted clauses are struck down by the court, would not arise. In view of this, the interim order would amount to substituting the legal policy by the judicial order, and thus not sustainable:Supreme Court         
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    APPOINTMENTS OF District Government Counsels/Asst.District Government Counsels in Uttar Pradesh under amended provisions of L.R.Manual : Supreme COURT Dated 3/12/2010.         
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    the first respondent set up the case in the plaint that the appellant was a trespasser in the subject room. The first appellate court has also recorded a categorical finding, which has not been disturbed by the High Court, that the appellant was occupying the subject room as trespasser. In the circumstances, the suit was clearly not maintainable for want of written permission from the Competent Authority and was rightly dismissed by the trial court- Appeal Dismissed- Supreme Court of India- Order Dated- 01 Dec 2010         
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    The recovery of blood stained loan form application bearing name and address of appellant Rameshbhai Mohanbhai Koli from the scene of offence and the serological report which opines the blood to be of group -O- which is the blood group of the deceased conclusively establishes the presence of accu sedat the scene of offence. Even though the panch-witness Vijaybhai has turned hostile to the prosecution but the spot panchnama has been cogently and convincingly proved through the testimony of the Investigating Officer.-conviction maintained :Supreme Court.         
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    Held " I. Absence of appellant from duty as Guard Commander for 25 minutes was bona fide and permissible under the statutory rules. II. Imposition of punishment of punishment drill for 10 days for the said absence was unwarranted. III. Protest by the appellant against the imposition of the said punishment could not warrant enhancement of punishment of the appellant for confinement in cell for ten days. IV. Disobedience of the enhanced punishment could not, in this case, warrant initiation of disciplinary proceedings by the Commandant concerned against the appellant. V. The Commandant could not himself become the Judge of his own cause. VI. The Commandant could not appoint his own subordinate as the inquiry officer. VII. The Commandant could have referred the matter to his superior officer for appropriate action in terms of Rules 1991. VIII. Once the Commandant concerned appeared as a witness himself in the enquiry, he could not pass the order of punishment. IX. The Authority who initiated the disciplinary proceedings against the appellant became a witness before the inquiry officer appointed by him, who is subordinate to him in his office and also accepted the enquiry report and passed the order of punishment. Thus, the order of punishment stood vitiated. X. The Appellate Authority could not consider the past conduct of the appellant to justify the order of punishment passed by the disciplinary authority without bringing it to the notice of the appellant. XI. As the punishment order had been passed in violation of the statutory rules and the principles of natural justice as well, it is rendered null and void. Thus, it remained inexecutable. XII. Past conduct of an employee should not generally be taken into account to substantiate the quantum of punishment without bringing it to the notice of the delinquent employee. XIII. The error of violating the principles of natural justice by the Disciplinary Authority has been of such a grave nature that under no circumstance can the past conduct of the appellant, even if not satisfactory, be taken into consideration.- Supreme Court.         
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    ALL WITNESSES TURNED HOSTILE - WHEATHER CONVICTION CAN BE BASED ON FIR AND STATEMENTS U/S 161 CR.P.C.? YES.

"The FIR had been lodged promptly, naming the appellant as the person who committed the offence. All the eye-witnesses, including the injured witnesses, attributed the commission of the offence only to the appellant in their statements under Section 161 Cr.P.C. It is difficult to imagine that the complainant and the eye- witnesses had all falsely named the appellant as being the person responsible for the offence at the initial stage itself - SUPREME COURT"

Standard of Proof:

• Kashmira Singh v. State of Madhya Pradesh, AIR 1952 SC 159; • State of Punjab v. Jagir Singh Baljit Singh & Anr., AIR 1973 SC 2407; • Shankarlal Gyarasilal Dixit v. State of Maharashtra, AIR 1981 SC 765; • Mousam Singha Roy & Ors. v. State of West Bengal, (2003)12 SCC 377; and • Aloke Nath Dutta & Ors. v. State of West Bengal,(2007) 12 SCC 230). • In Sarwan Singh Rattan Singh v. State of Punjab, AIR 1957 SC 637, Supreme Court observed : "Considered as a whole the prosecution story may be true; but between `may be true` and `must be true` there is inevitably a long distance to travel and the whole of this distance must be covered by legal, reliable and unimpeachable evidence [before an accused can be convicted]."

Circumstantial Evidence:

• In Sharad Birdhichand Sarda v. State of Maharashtra, AIR 1984 SC 1622, Supreme Court observed that it is well settled that the prosecutions case must stand or fall on its own legs and cannot derive any strength from the weakness of the defence put up by the accused. However, a false defence may be called into aid only to lend assurance to the court where various links in the chain of circumstantial evidence are in themselves complete. The Court also discussed the nature, character and essential proof required in a criminal case which rests on circumstantial evidence alone and held as under: (1) The circumstances from which the conclusion of guilt is to be drawn should be fully established; (2) The facts so established should be consistent only with the hypothesis of the guilt of the accused, that is to say, they should not be explainable on any other hypothesis except that the accused is guilty; (3) The circumstances should be of a conclusive nature and tendency; (4) They should exclude every possible hypothesis except the one to be proved; and (5) There must be a chain of evidence so complete as not to leave any reasonable ground for the conclusion consistent with the innocence of the accused and must show that in all human probability the act must have been done by the accused. A similar view has been reiterated by Supreme Court in - • State of Uttar Pradesh v. Satish, (2005) 3 SCC 114; • Krishnan v. State represented by Inspector of Police, (2008) 15 SCC 430; • Ramesh Bhai & Anr. v. State of Rajasthan, (2009) 12 SCC 603; • Subramaniam v. State of Tamil Nadu & Anr., (2009) 14 SCC 415; • Babu v. State of Kerala, JT 2010 (8) SC 560, observing that the evidence produced by the prosecution should be of such a nature that it makes the conviction of the accused sustainable.

Hostile Witness:

State of Gujarat v. Anirudhsing, (1997) 6 SCC 514, State of Rajasthan v. Bhawani & Anr., (2003) 7 SCC 291) Radha Mohan Singh @ Lal Saheb & Ors. v. State of U.P., (2006) 2 SCC 450, observed as under:".....It is well settled that the evidence of a prosecution witness cannot be rejected in toto merely because the prosecution chose to treat him as hostile and cross-examined him. The evidence of such witness cannot be treated as effaced or washed off the record altogether but the same can be accepted to the extent his version is found to be dependable on a careful scrutiny thereof... In Mahesh v. State of Maharashtra, (2008) 13 SCC 271, Supreme Court considered the value of the deposition of a hostile witness and held as under: ".....If PW 1, the maker of the complaint has chosen not to corroborate his earlier statement made in the complaint and recorded during investigation, the conduct of such a witness for no plausible and tenable reasons pointed out on record, will give rise to doubt the testimony of the investigating officer who had sincerely and honestly conducted the entire investigation of the case. In these circumstances, we are of the view that PW.1 has tried to conceal the material truth from the Court with the sole purpose of shielding and protecting the appellant for reasons best known to the witness and therefore, no benefit could be given to the appellant for unfavourable conduct of this witness to the prosecution". In Rajendra & Anr. v. State of Uttar Pradesh, (2009) 13SCC 480, Supreme Court observed that merely because a witness deviates from his statement made in the FIR, his evidence cannot be held to be totally unreliable. Supreme Court reiterated a similar view in Govindappa & Ors. v. State of Karnataka, (2010) 6 SCC 533, observing that the deposition of a hostile witness can be relied upon at least upto the extent he supported the case of the prosecution. So, In view of the above, it is evident that the evidence of a person does not become effaced from the record merely because he has turned hostile and his deposition must be examined more cautiously to find out as to what extent he has supported the case of the prosecution.

Abscondance of Accused :

In Matru @ Girish Chandra v. The State of U.P., AIR 1971 SC 1050, Supreme Court repelled the submissions made by the State that as after commission of the offence the accused had been absconding,therefore, the inference can be drawn that he was a guilty person, observing as under: "The appellants conduct in absconding was also relied upon. Now, mere absconding by itself does not necessarily lead to a firm conclusion of guilty mind. Even an innocent man may feel panicky and try to evade arrest when wrongly suspected of a grave crime such is the instinct of self- preservation. The act of absconding is no doubt relevant piece of evidence to be considered along with other evidence but its value would alwaysdepend on the circumstances of each case Normally the courts are disinclined to attach much importance to the act of absconding, treating it as a very small item in the evidence for sustaining conviction. It can scarcely be held as a determining link in completing the chain of circumstantial evidence which must admit of no other reasonable hypothesis than that of the guilt of the accused. In the present case the appellant was with Ram Chandra till the FIR was lodged. If thereafter he felt that he was being wrongly suspected and he tried to keep out of the way we do not think this circumstance can be considered to be necessarily evidence of a guilty mind attempting to evade justice. It is not inconsistent with his innocence." A similar view has been reiterated in Rahman v.State of U.P., AIR 1972 SC 110; State of M.P. v. Paltan Mallah & Ors., AIR 2005 SC 733; Bipin Kumar Mondal v. State of West Bengal, JT 2010 (7) SC 379. So, Abscondance by a person against whom FIR has been lodged, having an apprehension of being apprehended by the police, cannot be said to be unnatural. Thus, mere abscondance by the appellant after commission of the crime and remaining untraceable for a period of six days itself cannot establish his guilt. Absconding by itself is not a conclusive proof of either of guilt or of a guilty conscience.

Statement u/s 313 Cr.P.C.

An accused can be questioned under Section 313 Cr.P.C. only for the purpose of enabling him personally to explain any circumstance appearing in the evidence against him. No matter how weak or scanty the prosecution evidence is in regard to certain incriminating material, it is the duty of the Court to examine the accused and seek his explanation on incriminating material which has surfaced against him. Section 313 Cr.P.C. is based on the fundamental principle of fairness. The attention of the accused must specifically be brought to inculpatory pieces of evidence to give him an opportunity to offer an explanation if he chooses to do so. Therefore, the court is under a legal obligation to put the incriminating circumstances before the accused and solicit his response. This provision is mandatory in nature and casts an imperative duty on the court and confers a corresponding right on the accused to have an opportunity to offer an explanation for such incriminatory material appearing against him. Circumstances which were not put to the accused in his examination under Section 313 Cr.P.C. cannot be used against him and have to be excluded from consideration. ( Sharad Birdhichand ; and State of Maharashtra v. Sukhdev Singh & Anr., AIR 1992 SC 2100). In S. Harnam Singh v. State (Delhi Admn.), AIR 1976 SC 2140, Supreme Court held that non-indication of inculpatory material and its relevant facts by the trial court to the accused adds to the vulnerability of the prosecution case. The recording of the statement of the accused under Section 313 Cr.P.C. is not a purposeless exercise. If any appellate Court or revisional court comes across the fact that the trial Court had not put any question to an accused, even if it is of a vital nature, such an omission alone should not result in the setting aside of the conviction and sentence as an inevitable consequence. An inadequate examination cannot be presumed to have caused prejudice. Every error or omission in compliance of the provisions of Section 313 Cr.P.C., does not necessarily vitiate trial. Such errors fall within category of curable irregularities and the question as to whether the trial is vitiated, in each case depends upon the degree of error and upon whether prejudice has been or is likely to have been caused to accused. Efforts should be made to undo or correct the lapse. Wasim Khan v. State of Uttar Pradesh, AIR 1956 SC 400; Bhoor Singh & Anr. v. State of Punjab, AIR 1974 SC 1256; Labhchand Dhanpat Singh Jain v. State of Maharashtra, AIR 1975 SC 182; State of Punjab v. Naib Din, AIR 2001 SC 3955; Parsuram Pandey & Ors. v. State of Bihar, (2004) 13 SCC 189). In Asraf Ali v. State of Assam, (2008) 16 SCC 328, Supreme Court observed: "Section 313 of the Code casts a duty on the court to put in an enquiry or trial questions to the accused for the purpose of enabling him to explain any of the circumstances appearing in the evidence against him. It follows as a necessary corollary therefrom that each material circumstance appearing in the evidence against the accused is required to be put to him specifically, distinctly and separately and failure to do so amounts to a serious irregularity vitiating trial, if it is shown that the accused was prejudiced." In Shivaji Sahebrao Bobade & Anr. v. State of Maharashtra, AIR 1973 SC 2622, Supreme Court observed as under :"It is trite law, nevertheless fundamental, that the prisoner's attention should be drawn to every inculpatory material so as to enable him to explain it. This is the basic fairness of a criminal trial and failures in this area may gravely imperil the validity of the trial itself, if consequential miscarriage of justice has flowed. However where such an omission has occurred it does not ipso facto vitiate the proceedings and prejudice occasioned by such defect must be established by the accused. In the event of evidentiary material not being put to the accused, the court must ordinarily eschew such material from consideration. It is also open to the appellate court to call upon the counsel for the accused to show what explanation the accused has as regards the circumstances established against him but not put to him and if the accused is unable to offer the appellate court any plausible or reasonable explanation of such circumstances, the court may assume that no acceptable answer exists and that even if the accused had been questioned at the proper time in the trial court he would not have been able to furnish any good ground to get out of the circumstances on which the trial court has relied for its conviction." (Emphasis added). In Ganesh Gogoi v. State of Assam, (2009) 7 SCC 404, Supreme Court relying upon its earlier decision in Basavaraj R. Patil & Ors.v. State of Karnataka, (2000) 8 SCC 740, held that the provisions of Section 313 Cr.P.C. are not meant to nail the accused to his disadvantage but are meant for his benefit. The provisions are based on the salutary principles of natural justice and the maxim "audi alteram partem" has been enshrined in them. Therefore, an examination under Section 313 Cr.P.C. has to be of utmost fairness. In Shaikh Maqsood v. State of Maharashtra, (2009) 6 SCC 583; and Ranvir Yadav v. State of Bihar (2009) 6 SCC 595, Supreme Court held that it is the duty of the trial court to indicate incriminating material to the accused. Section 313 Cr.P.C. is not an empty formality. An improper examination/inadequate questioning underSection 313 Cr.P.C. amounts to a serious lapse on the part of the trial Court and is a ground for interference with the conviction. In Suresh Chandra Bahri v. State of Bihar, AIR 1994 SC 2420, Supreme Court rejected the submission that as no question had been put to the accused on motive, no motive for the commission of the crime could be attributed to the accused, nor the same could be reckoned as circumstance against him observing that it could not be pointed out as to what in fact was the real prejudice caused to the accused by omission to question the accused on the motive for the crime. No material was placed before the court to show as to what and in what manner the prejudice, if any, was caused to the accused. More so, the accused/appellant was aware of accusation and charge against him. Thus, it is evident from the above that the provisions of Section 313 Cr.P.C make it obligatory for the court to question the accused on the evidence and circumstances against him so as to offer the accused an opportunity to explain the same. But, it would not be enough for the accused to show that he has not been questioned or examined on a particular circumstance, instead he must show that such non- examination has actually and materially prejudiced him and has resulted in the failure of justice. In other words, in the event of an inadvertent omission on the part of the court to question the accused on any incriminating circumstance cannot ipso facto vitiate the trial unless it is shown that some material prejudice was caused to the accused by the omission of the court.
        
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    Remmission of Sentence : Part A and Part B of Punjab Government`s order for remission of sentences discussed- earlier order reviewed - the special remission of one year under the Government Order dated 14.8.2002 was available to persons convicted for a term of seven years for the offence under section 304-B of IPC - Supreme Court.         
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    Electricity arrears do not constitute a charge over the property. Therefore in general law, a transferee of a premises cannot be made liable for the dues of the previous owner/occupier - Supreme Court.         
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    Abatement to suicide : Abetment involves a mental process of instigating a person or intentionally aiding a person in doing of a thing. Without a positive act on the part of the accused to instigate or aid in committing suicide, conviction cannot be sustained. The intention of the legislature and the ratio of the cases decided by this Court is clear that in order to convict a person under Section 306 IPC there has to be a clear mens rea to commit the offence. It also requires an active act or direct act which led the deceased to commit suicide seeing no option and that act must have been intended to push the deceased into such a position that he committed suicide - defination of suicide ? - Supreme Court.         
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    Belated apology cannot be accepted because it has not been given in good faith--Even if it is not belated where apology is without real contrition and remorse and was merely tendered as a weapon of defence, the Court may refuse to accept it.         
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    The reserved category candidates "belonging to OBC, SC/ ST categories" who are selected on merit and placed in the list of General/Unreserved category candidates can choose to migrate to the respective reserved category at the time of allocation of services         
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    The National Human Rights Commission had published `Guidelines for the Administration of Polygraph Test (Lie Detector Test) on an Accused` in 2000. These guidelines should be strictly adhered to and similar safeguards should be adopted for conducting the `Narcoanalysis technique` and the `Brain Electrical Activation Profile` test. The text of these guidelines has been reproduced below: (i) No Lie Detector Tests should be administered except on the basis of consent of the accused. An option should be given to the accused whether he wishes to avail such test. (ii) If the accused volunteers for a Lie Detector Test, he should be given access to a lawyer and the physical, emotional and legal implication of such a test should be explained to him by the police and his lawyer. (iii) The consent should be recorded before a Judicial Magistrate. (iv) During the hearing before the Magistrate, the person alleged to have agreed should be duly represented by a lawyer. (v) At the hearing, the person in question should also be told in clear terms that the statement that is made shall not be a `confessional` statement to the Magistrate but will have the status of a statement made to the police. (vi) The Magistrate shall consider all factors relating to the detention including the length of detention and the nature of the interrogation. (vii) The actual recording of the Lie Detector Test shall be done by an independent agency (such as a hospital) and conducted in the presence of a lawyer. (viii) A full medical and factual narration of the manner of the information received must be taken on record.         
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    Police Custody Remand : Police remand can only be made during the first period of remand after arrest and production before the Magistrate, but not after the expiry of the said period.- Anupam J. Kulkarni case [sc] followed : Supreme Court.         
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    It is not only desirable but imperative that electronic and news media should also play positive role in presenting to general public as to what actually transpires during the course of the hearing and it should not be published in such a manner so as to get unnecessary publicity for its own paper or news channel. Such a tendency, which is indeed growing fast, should be stopped. We are saying so as without knowing the reference in context of which the questions were put forth by us, were completely ignored and the same were misquoted which raised unnecessary hue and cry.         
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    1) The appellate Court has all the necessary powers to re- evaluate the evidence let in before the trial Court as well as the conclusions reached. It has a duty to specify the compelling and substantial reasons in case it reverses the order of acquittal passed by the trial Court. In the case on hand, the High Court by adhering to all the ingredients and by giving cogent and adequate reasons reversed the order of acquittal. 2) The presence of the accused at the scene of crime is proved through the ocular testimonies of PWs 1, 2, 6, 20, 23, 24 and 70, corroborated by Ex PW 12/D-I as well as 3 PCR calls Ex PW 11/A, B and C. 3) Phone calls made immediately after an incident to the police constitutes an FIR only when they are not vague and cryptic. Calls purely for the reason of getting the police to the scene of crime do not necessarily constitute the FIR. In the present case, the phone calls were vague and therefore could not be registered as the FIR. The FIR was properly lodged as per the statement of Shyan Munshi PW-2. 4) Delay in recording the statement of the witnesses do not necessarily discredit their testimonies. The court may rely on such testimonies if they are cogent and credible. 5) The laboratory reports in the present case are vague and ambiguous and, therefore, they cannot be relied upon to reach any specific conclusion regarding the incident. 6) The evidence regarding the actual incident, the testimonies of witnesses, the evidence connecting the vehicles and cartridges to the accused - Manu Sharma, as well as his conduct after the incident prove his guilt beyond reasonable doubt. The High Court has analyzed all the evidence and arrived at the correct conclusion. 7) The public prosecutor is under a duty of disclosure under the Cr.P.C., Bar Council Rules and relevant principles of common law. Nevertheless, a violation of this duty does not necessarily vitiate the entire trial. A trial would only be vitiated if non-disclosure amounts to a material irregularity and causes irreversible prejudice to the accused. In the present case, no such prejudice was caused to the accused, and therefore the trial is not vitiated. 8) No prejudice had been caused to the right of the accused to fair trial and non-furnishing of the copy of one of the ballistic reports had not hampered the ends of justice. The right of the accused to disclosure has not received any set back in the facts and circumstances of the case. 9) The High Court has rightly convicted the other two accused, namely, Amardeep Singh Gill @ Tony Gill and Vikas Yadav after appreciation of the evidence of PWs 30 and 101. 10) Normally, the judgment/order should be set aside or affirmed as the case may be but preferably without offering any undesirable comments, disparaging remarks or indications which would impinge upon the dignity and respect of judicial system. 11) Every effort should be made by the print and electronic media to ensure that the distinction between trial by media and informative media should always be maintained. Trial by media should be avoided particularly, at a stage when the suspect is entitled to the constitutional protections. Invasion of his rights is bound to be held as impermissible : Supreme Court.         
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    it is now a settled law that a confessional statement duly recorded by a police officer in a case related to TADA Act and the rules framed thereunder would continue to remain admissible for the offences under any other law which were tried along with TADA offences under Sections 12 read with Section 15 of the Act notwithstanding that the accused was acquitted of offences under the TADA Act in the same trial. But, here is a case where the allegation was mainly for the offences under the IPC and some offences under the TADA Act were also incorporated initially but later on the same were dropped. Consequently, charges in the said case were framed only for offences under 14 the IPC and not under the TADA Act and the trial is also only for offences under the IPC and not under the TADA Act. Therefore, such confessional statement as made by the respondent no. 4 under the TADA Act, in a different case, cannot be used or utilised by the prosecution in the present case as the charges were framed only for the offences under the Indian Penal Code.         
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    The priciple reteriated that whenever a person complains and claims that there is a violation of any provision of law or a Constitutional provision,it does not automatically involve breach of fundamental right for the enforcement of which alone Article 32 of the Constitution is attracted.         
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    This court cannot sit in judgment over whether investigations should be launched against politicians for alleged acts of corruption. The Supreme Court of India functions as a Constitutional Court as well as the highest appellate court in the country. If the Supreme Court gives direction for prosecution, it would cause serious prejudice to the accused, as the direction of this Court may have far reaching persuasive effect on the Court which may ultimately try the accused. It is always open to the petitioners to approach the investigative agencies directly with the incriminating materials and it is for the investigative agencies to decide on the further course of action: Supreme Court         
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    The Appellate Tribunal for Electricity-- has no jurisdiction to decide --the validity of the Regulations framed by the Central Electricity Regulatory Commission-- under Section 178 of the Electricity Act, 2003. The validity of the Regulations may, however, be challenged by seeking judicial review under Article 226 of the Constitution of India.         
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    Indian Penal Code,1860 -Section 304 Part II-Bail Bond cancelled- It is well settled that in a case where the Trial Court has recorded acquittal, the Appellate Court should be slow in interfering with the judgment of acquittal. On evaluation of the evidence, if the two views are possible, the Appellate Court should not substitute its own view and discard the judgment of the Trial Court. But, in the instant case, the High Court clearly came to the conclusion that the entire approach of the Trial Court cannot be sustained both on the law and the facts.         
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    Whether the High Court, in exercise of its jurisdiction under Article 226 of the Constitution of India, can direct the Central Bureau of Investigation established under the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946 , to investigate a cognizable offence, which is alleged to have taken place within the territorial jurisdiction of a State, without the consent of the State Government ? -Yes. : Constitution Bench Supreme Court.         
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    Death Penalty when to be awarded : Supreme Court         
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    "Section 304-B merely raises a presumption of dowry death and lays down that the minimum sentence should be 7 years, but it may extend to imprisonment for life. Therefore, awarding the extreme punishment of imprisonment for life should be used in rare cases and not in every case." -Three Judge Bench verdict of SC in the case of Hemchand v. State of Haryana followed : Supreme Court         
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    Sections 147, 148, 341, 504,506, 324, 326 read with Section 149 of the Indian Penal Code-- The Trial Court did not find the Appellants guilty of the aforesaid offences and hence they were acquitted—High Reversed the Order and sentenced U/s-- Section 326 of the I.P.C. and sentenced them to undergo rigorous imprisonment for a period of three months and to pay a fine of Rs.5,000/- each and simple imprisonment.         
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    Section 148, 302, 324, 323-IPC-Substantial part of the prosecution story has been disbelieved--Conviction of the appellant rests solely on the testimony of (PW-2) who does not seem to have particular respect for truth as observed by the trial court. --High Court assumed that he had received injuries in the same occurrence in which deceased was killed--set aside the judgments of the High Court and the trial court and acquit him of the charges under sections 302 & 324         
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    Indian Penal Code 306 IPC-- Appellant was convicted by the Assistant Sessions Judge, under Section 306 of the Indian Penal Code-- High Court upheld the judgment of the learned Assistant Sessions Judge—the sentence of rigorous imprisonment of 10 years was reduced to 5 years- the conviction of the appellant cannot be sustained –Appeal Allowed         
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    The benefit must always go to the accused and not to the prosecution. If the prosecution wants to prove the fact, the same must be proved by leading evidence, which is reliable and trustworthy, which pinpoints and conclusively proves the guilt of the accused. This is not a case where we can safely hold that the evidence led was trustworthy and conclusively establishes that it is the accused only, who had committed the offence. Considering the entire facts and circumstances of the case we are not inclined to interfere with the order of acquittal: Supreme Court.         
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    The insurance companies in genuine and bona fide claims of the insurers should not adopt the attitude of avoiding payments on one pretext or the other.This attitude puts a serious question mark on their credibility and trustworthiness of the insurance companies. Incidentally by adopting honest approach and attitude the insurance companies would be able to save enormous litigation costs and the interest liability: Supreme Court.         
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    one of the grounds for cancellation of bail would be where material evidence brought on record have been ignored and that too without any reasons : Supreme Court         
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    . A Deputy General Manger is not a person who is responsible to the company for the conduct of the business of the company. He does not fall under any of the categories (a) to (g) listed in section 5 of the Companies Act . He cannot be made vicariously liable under Section 141(1) of the Act. If he has to be made liable under Section 141(2), the necessary averments relating to consent/connivance/negligence should have been made: Supereme Court         
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    Non Compliance of section 50 and non examination of two recovery witness ruled fatal for prosecution, order of acquittal confirmed : Supereme Court         
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    Transfusing wrong blood group to the patient which caused death , Mismatching of blood confirmed by the Senior Resident Doctor,Held a case of serious negligence by PGI and attending doctors, the order of state commision confirmed : Supereme Court         
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    The inherent powers can be exercised in those exceptional cases where the allegations made in the first information report or the complaint, even if are taken on their face value and accepted in their entirety do not prima facie constitute any offence or make out a case against the accused : Supereme Court         
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    As already undergone two years of imprisonment as well appeal may not heard in the near future- Intriem Bail Granted : Supereme Court         
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    Since the High Court had not kept the relevant parameters in view, while granting bail, order of bail set aside : Supreme Court         
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    No common object and not a member of unlawfull assembly-acquittal restored:Supereme Court         
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    As the appellant has established breach by the respondents, the award of Rs. 1,000 as damages for breach by the trial court is also upheld. As a consequence of the finding that the breach is on the part of the respondents and not on the appellant, the trial court was justified in giving a declaration that the respondents were not entitled to recover any extra cost involved in getting the work completed from the appellant. But it could not have granted the further relief of directing the respondents to refund the security deposit amount and retention deposit amount, as the appellant had neither quantified the said security deposit/retention deposit nor paid court fee thereon. Therefore, the decree granted by the trial court, to the extent it directs refund of the security deposit and retention amount, cannot be sustained.         
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    Dowry death-Harassment for dowry by In-laws of the deceased on various occasions-Deceased sent to her fathers home to arrange dowry about 10 days before the occurrence-Deceased returned to her matrimonial home on request of the accused persons-Deceased found dead under suspicious circumstances and cremated hurriedly         
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    The State should bear in mind the dicta of this Court in Mundrika Prasad Singh (supra) as regard the necessity to consult the District Judge. While making appointments of District Government Counsel, therefore, the State should give primacy to the opinion of the District Judge. Such a course of action would demonstrate fairness and reasonableness of action and, furthermore, to a large extent the action of the State would not be dubbed as politically motivated or otherwise arbitrary. As noticed hereinbefore, there also does not exist any rationale behind deletion of the provision relating to consultation with the High Court in the matter of appointment of the Public prosecutors in the High Court.
The said provision being a salutary one, it is expected that the State of U.P. either would suitably amend the same or despite deletion shall consult the High Court with a view to ensure fairness in action : Supreme Court Dated 21/4/2004.
        
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    Recruitment-Post of Lecturer-Order of Vice Chancellor declining to accord approval to appellant`s selection-Re-advertisement of the post- Appellant appeared before Selection Committee without any protest-Whether appellant could challenge earlier order of Vice Chancel-lor-Held, no-She was estopped by her conduct --Service Law         
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    Suit for partition-Defendant claiming through gift deed- Plaintiff alleging the document to have been brought fraudulently-Suit decreed by trial court-Execution of gift deed disbelieved-Defendant`s appeal allowed- High Court dismissed plaintiff`s second appeal holding that there was no specific denial by plaintiff and the proviso to Section 68 would apply         
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    Death of a woman in her matrimonial house after three years of marriage-Death found to be not under ordinary circumstances-Husband and other close relatives tried under Sections 304-B, 498-A and 306 IPC-Presumption of law under Section 113-B of the Evidence Act drawn-All the accused convicted of all the offences charged- Appeal filed by accused in the High Court against conviction and sentence         
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    In appeal appeal the High Court acquitted the respondent, holding that the prosecutrix was not proved beyond reasonable doubt to be below 16 years of age, that though the factum of respondent having committed sexual intercourse was proved, but the absence of injuries on the person of the prosecutrix infers the possibility of the prosecutrix being the con-senting party to the act, that the delay in lodging FIR was not satisfactorily explained, and that the delay coupled with non-examination renders the prosecution case doubtful.         
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    Constitution is Supreme- No authority created under constitution is Supreme- the Constitution is supreme.-Supreme Court- Bench Strength 11.-Dated 27.2.1967.         
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    Short Listing Criterea         
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