Advocate Sushila
SUPREME COURT OBSERVES THAT LAW DOES NOT DISQUALIFY RELATIVES TO ACT AS WITNESS
Advocate Sushila Ram 11 Sep 2021

SUPREME COURT OBSERVES THAT LAW DOES NOT DISQUALIFY RELATIVES TO ACT AS WITNESS

Recently, a Division Bench of the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India in the case of Gumansinh alias Lalo alias Raju Bhikhabhai Chauhan and Another vs. State of Gujarat [(2021) SCC OnLine SC 660], vide its Judgment dated 03-09-2021 observed that the evidentiary value of the close relatives/family members is not liable to be rejected on the ground of being a relative of the Deceased. As such, law does not disqualify relatives to be produced as a witness though they may be interested witness.

 

Background

One Shri. Gumansinh (‘Appellant No. 1’) and Smt. Tahera (‘Deceased’) got married on 27.04.1997. The Appellant No. 1 started constantly demanding Rs. 25,000/- from the Deceased in order to purchase buffaloes as, the Appellant No. 1 was keen on doing milk business. Due to poor financial condition, the Deceased’s father was not able to satisfy the demand of Appellant No. 1. Therefore, Appellant No. 1 frequently started beating the Deceased, while her mother-in-law (‘Appellant No. 2’) used to pick up quarrel with her on one or the other pretext.

 

The Deceased committed suicide on 14.12.1997 by consuming poison at her matrimonial home for the sole reason that the Deceased was unable to bear the continuous mental and physical cruelty meted out to her by the Appellants in a period of 8 months of marriage.

 

The father of the Deceased filed a Police Complaint, which got registered as ICR No. 34/1997 for the offences punishable under Section 498A (Husband or relative of husband of a woman subjecting her to cruelty) and Section 306 (Abetment of suicide) read with Section 114 (Abettor present when offence is committed) of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 (IPC). Charge-sheet was filed by the Police and the case went before the Learned Additional Sessions Judge for trial. Thereafter, the Appellants pleaded not guilty. During the trial, the prosecution side had examined seven witnesses, all of whom gave incriminating evidence against the Appellants in their statement under Section 313 of Code of Criminal Procedure Code, 1973 (Cr.PC). The Appellants however totally denied the case of the prosecution.

 

Trial Court:

As a result, the Learned Sessions Judge, Vadodara (Trial Court) convicted the Appellants under Sections 306, 498A read with Section 114 of the IPC, vide its Judgment dated 27.07.2000.

 

High Court:

The Appellants filed an Appeal against the Trial Court Judgment dated 27.07.2000 before the Hon'ble High Court of Gujarat at Ahmedabad (High Court). The High Court observed that the evidence produced by the prosecution clearly indicates the Deceased was subjected to mental and physical cruelty by the Appellants on the account of non-fulfillment of demand of Rs. 25,000/- and, therefore, the Judgment and Order of conviction passed by the Trial Court was confirmed. The High Court vide its Order dated 28.12.2018 convicted the Appellants under Section 498-A and Section 306 of the IPC.

 

Being aggrieved, the Appellant filed an Appeal before the Supreme Court against the final Order and Judgment dated 28.12.2018 passed by the Hon'ble High Court. It was contended by the Sate that all the ingredients necessary for conviction under Section 306 of the IPC stands proved with the aid of Section 113-A of the Evidence Act, 1872 as such the present Appeal deserves to be dismissed.

 

To read more, please visit the link below:

https://theindianlawyer.in/supreme-court-observes-that-law-does-not-disqualify-relatives-to-act-as-witness/

#supremecourt #relatives #witness #lawyered

Did you find this write up useful? YES 0 NO 0
Featured Members view all

New Members view all

×

C2RMTo Know More

Something Awesome Is In The Work

0

DAYS

0

HOURS

0

MINUTES

0

SECONDS

Sign-up and we will notify you of our launch.
We’ll also give some discount for your effort :)

* We won’t use your email for spam, just to notify you of our launch.