MOHAR SINGH Vs. STATE OF HIMACHAL PRADESH
HIGH COURT OF HIMACHAL PRADESH
STATE OF HIMACHAL PRADESH
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(1.) Two main incriminating circumstances which have weighed with the learned Sessions Judge, Sirmur district at Nahan, for returning a verdict of guilty against the accused -appellant (Mohar Singh) for an offence under section 302 of the Indian Penal Code and sentencing him to life imprisonment with a fine of Rs. 2,000 (in default to further undergo rigorous imprisonment for six months) by his judgment dated 21 -8 -1990, are extra -judicial confessions and some recoveries made pursuant to disclosure statement made under section 27 of the Indian Evidence Act, in particular the discovery of the dead body. We are of the firm view that the extra -judicial confessions relied upon are first, inadmissible and, secondly, not worthy of acceptance in any case. As regards the recoveries, the investigation is tainted and lop -sided to an extent that it would be highly unsafe to hold that the dead -body was recovered at the instance of the accused. This appeal, therefore, has to be accepted.
(2.) The prosecution case may now be briefly stated. One Patti Ram of village Jong Bas, Gram Panchayat Jamna, Tehsil Paonta Sahib of District Sirmur, had two sons, namely, Jalam Singh aged 55 years and Jati Ram, aged 50 years. According to the custom prevalent in that area, both of them had a common wife, Surmi Devi. Notwithstanding their common marriage to one wife, all the five children born to Surmi Devi are stated to be from the loins of Jati Ram, She gave birth to three sons -Laiq Ram, Mohar Singh and Balbir Singh and two daughters -Parvati and Leela Devi. Patti Ram owned land in villages Singa Bas, Jong Bas and Kando The eldest son Laiq Ram with his family lived in village Singa Bas Accused Mohar Singh, the second son with his family resided in Jong Bas and had been retained by Jalam Singh as his son in which capacity Mohar Singh used to look after him. The third son Balbir Singh was a student of 10th class and had been away to Shimla. However, be alongwith his two younger sisters Parvati and Leela Devi were settled in village Kando with Jati Ram. The above relationship is not disputed.
(3.) The further case of the prosecution is that some villagers prepared an application Ex. P. H on 28 -5 -1989 and this was address to the I/c Police Post Raj Ban. The police was informed by way of this application that Jalam Singh had been missing for the last 5/6 days from his village and that the villagers suspect that he had been murdered. It was specifically mentioned that the signatories to the application further suspected that the murder bad been committed in conspiracy with those of his relatives with whom he was living for several years and had strained relationship, from the endorsement made at the bottom of this application Ex. P. H., it appears that it was presented by one Kundan Singh to the Sub -Inspector, Police Station, Paonta Sahib, on 28 -5 -19&9 and that the said Sub -Inspector endorsed it to 1/c Police Post, Raj Ban, for immediate necessary action as warranted under law after thorough verification. One Head -constable, presumably the Incharge of Police Post Raj Ban is stated to have reached village Jong Bas in the evening on same day. He was followed by S. I. Ahmad Saiyad (PW 15) who was then working as Addl. Station House Officer at Police Station Paonta Sahib. The entire case was investigated by this witness. He recorded statement Ex. P. K on 29 -5 -1989 under section 154 of the Code of Criminal Procedure by examining Rai Mal (PW 6) another Panch of Gram Panchayat Jamna. Ruqa Ex. P. K. was then forwarded to Police Station Paonta Sahib and was received there at 4.30 p m. by M. H. C. Balbir Singh (PW 14) on that very day. On its basis he recorded First Information Report Ex. PW 14/A and also made endorsement Ex. PK/1 on the aforesaid Ruqa. After the completion of investigations Inspector Kehar Singh (PW 12) then working as Station House Officer, Police Station, Paonta Sahib, prepared the challan and presented it in the Court.;
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