TEJUMAL Vs. STATE OF RAJASTHAN
HIGH COURT OF RAJASTHAN
STATE OF RAJASTHAN
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Lodha, J. -
(1.)The appellant Tejumal has been convicted for an offence under section 302, Indian Penal Code for the murder of his wife Smt. Chandra on the night between 1st and 2nd July, and has been sentenced to imprisonment for life by the learned Sessions Judge, Alwar.
(2.)At about 8.30 a.m. on 2-7-1965 P. W. 2 Devaram, brother of the accused Tejumal verbally reported at the Police Station, Khairthal that at about 5 a.m. on that day while he was sleeping on the terrace of his house, he heard the cries of his brother Tejumal and Mst. Chandra, wife of Tejutnal, whereupon he came down stairs and saw that Smt. Chandra's clothes were ablaze with fire. He poured a pitcher full of water over her to extenguish the fire but Smt. Chandra died shortly thereafter. Devaram went on to say that Smt. Chandra used to prepare tea on stove every morning and he saw the stove and other necessary materials for preparing tea lying there. Head Constable Pooranlal (P.W. 71 recorded this report in the daily diary of the Police Out-Post, a copy of which has been placed on the record and marked Ex. P.2. Pooranlal then started for the scene of occurrence and reached the house of the accused at about 9.30 a.m. and after preparing site plan, inquest report etc., sent the dead body of Smt. Chandra to the Khairthal Dispensary for postmortem examination. On receipt of the postmortem report in the night on 2-7-1965 to the effect that it was a case of murder, a case under section 302, Indian Penal Code, was registered at Police Station, Kishengarh. The postmortem report Ex. P. 3 showed that the death was due to asphyxia as a result of strangulation. The accused was arrested on 5-7-1965. He remained in the police custody upto 14-7-65 and on 17-7-1965 he made a confessional statement (Ex. P4) before P.W. 4 Shri Dharam Chand who was then Munsiff- Magistrate, First Class, posted at Kishengarh, District Alwar. This confession was retracted by the accused by an application dated 7-10-1965 filed before the Committing Magistrate i.e. the Sub-divisional Magistrate, Kishengarh. In his statement before the Committing Court the accused stated that he was badly beaten by the police and was given an electric shock and that it was as a result of threat and inducement given by the police that he had made a confessional statement which was untrue.
(3.)The only evidence against the accused consists of his retracted confession. The learned Sessions judge held that the confession was voluntary and was not brought about by any threat, inducement or promise. He also held that even though the confession was retracted it was corroborated in material particulars. In this view of the matter the learned Sessions judge held the accused guilty for the murder of his wife Smt. Chandra.
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