RANJIT SINGH Vs. STATE OF PUNJAB
SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
STATE OF PUNJAB
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(1.)Six accused, including the four appellants, were forwarded by the police to the concerned court to stand trial for offences under various provisions of I.P.C. The Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act (in short 'the TADA Act') and the Arms Act. One of them (Gurbachan Singh) was declared proclaimed offender. Another (Jagmail Singh) died. The remaining four, namely appellants were convicted for the offences for which they were tried. For offences under Sections 307/149, IPC and Sections 3 and 5 of the TADA Act, rigorous imprisonment for five years for each of these offences and fine was imposed on each of the appellants. For offences under Section 148, IPC two years' rigorous imprisonment and for offences under Section 363/149, IPC and Section 25 of Arms Act one year's rigorous imprisonment and fine was imposed on each of the appellants. All the sentences were directed to run concurrently. The appellants have challenged the judgment and order of learned Additional Judge, Designated Court, Nabha, in this appeal filed under Section 19 of the TADA Act.
(2.)The appellants have been convicted for the incident of encounter alleged to have been taken place, according to the case of the prosecution, on 18-9-1989. In brief, the prosecution case is that on 18-9-1989 Inspector Ram Singh received information that some terrorists armed with weapons had entered District Kurukshetra for committing crime. Two police parties were constituted one headed by S.I. Anil Kumar and the other headed by S.I. Om Prakash. D.S.P. Deep Ram and two independent witnesses Karnail Singh and Surjit Singh were with Inspector Ram Singh along with some other police officials. A Nakabandi was arranged with the instructions to the police officials to start firing when it is so ordered. It was a moonlit night. At about 9.45 p.m. accused Jagmail Singh and other accused including one Gurnam Singh were seen coming armed with weapons. Gurnam Singh has also died. On lalkara being raised by Ram Singh, Jagmail Singh who was ahead of all accused persons was apprehended. The other persons following him took positions and started firing. The police parties also fired in self defence and asked the accused to surrender as they were surrounded from all sides. The firing continued for about one hour. The police team consisted of about 50/60 officials. During the firing 175 shots were fired by the police and 157 rounds by the accused. When all the accused surrendered, their personal search were taken. From Jagmail Singh one AK-47 rifle, 169 cartridges, two magazines were recovered. From the search of Gurbachan Singh, one AK-47 rifle, 51 empty cartridges, two magazines and 163 live cartridges of AK-47 were recovered. AK-47 rifle was sealed and empties were also sealed. From the search of Baldev Singh, one AK-47 rifle, 49 empty cartridges, one .30 bore pistol and 15 live cartridges of the same bore and 118 live cartridges of AK-47 rifle were recovered. AK-47 rifle and 49 empty cartridges were separately sealed. From Sukhjit Singh, one AK-47 rifle, two magazines , 47 empty cartridges, 127 live cartridges were recovered. Empties and the rifle were sealed. From Ranjit Singh, one .315 bore rifle, 16 live cartridges, two empty cartridges of the same bore were recovered. The recovered 16 live cartridges were sealed. From Gurnam Singh, one .285 bore rifle, three empties and 12 live cartridges were recovered. Empties and rifles were separately sealed. From Satnam Singh, one .12 bore CBBL gun was recovered with 12 live cartridges and two empty cartridges and one .32 bore pistol was recovered. Gun and empties were sealed separately. The accused were not carrying any permit or licence to carry the weapons and the ammunition.
(3.)The accused were charged for offences under Sections 148, 307/149, 363/149 IPC, Sections 3 and 5 of the TADA Act and Section 25 of the Arms Act.
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