MOHAN LAL Vs. STATE OF RAJASTHAN
SUPREME COURT OF INDIA (FROM: RAJASTHAN)
STATE OF RAJASTHAN
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B. P. Singh, J. -
(1.)The appellant-Mohan Lal was put up for trial before the Court of Special Judge, S.C./S.T. (P.A.CC.), Sri Ganganagar in Criminal Case No. 4 of 1997 charged of the offences under S. 376, I.P.C. and S.3(2)(5) of the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. The learned Special Judge by his judgment and order dated 6th February, 1998 found the appellant guilty of the offence under S. 376, I.P.C. and sentenced him to undergo 7 years rigorous imprisonment and to pay a fine of Rs. 20,000/-, in default of payment of fine to undergo further imprisonment for one year. The appellant was, however, acquitted of the charge under S. 3(2)(5) of the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.
(2.)S.B. Criminal Appeal No. 123 of 1998 preferred by the appellant against his conviction and sentence was dismissed by the High Court of Rajasthan at Jodhpur by judgment and order dated 13th August, 1999. This appeal has been preferred by special leave.
(3.)The case of the prosecution is that prosecutrix-K (P.W. 1) is the daughter of P.W.2 resident of village Birdhwal in the district of Sri Ganganagar. The appellant is also a resident of the same village. On 8th October, 1996 at about 10.00 or 11.00 a.m. prosecutrix had proceeded with Draupadi, wife of Bhani Ram to cut grass. Draupadi induced her to accompany her to the house of the appellant, who was his Jeth (husbands elder brother) on the pretext of collecting her sickle and cloth sheet, where she was confined in a room belonging to the appellant who was present inside the room. He confined her in that room for about 3-4 hours and during this period raped her thrice. At one time she had come out of the room in the courtyard when she was seen by her brother P.W. 5 who resided in the adjacent house, but she was again pushed inside the room by the appellant and kept confined there for some more time. P.W. 5 became suspicious having seen a girl in the courtyard of the appellant. It is not in dispute that the house of P.W. 5 is adjacent to the house of the appellant and there is only a fence which separates the two courtyards. P.W. 3, brother of P.W. 5 had come to him and P.W. 5 asked him to call P.W. 2, the informant, father of the prosecutrix. After sometime, P.W. 2 came to him and he was told that there was a girl in the house of the appellant. Asking P.W. 3 to keep a watch, P.W. 2 went to call Parma Nand and Prithvi Ram with whom he went to the house of the appellant. At that time appellant had left his house but he found Sulochana and Draupadi, wives of the two brothers of the appellant sweeping the floor in the courtyard. Prosecutrix was found inside a room and she was brought out with the help of P.W. 5, Parma Nand and Prithvi Ram (both not examined). Prosecutrix was terrified and it took sometimes to pacify her. All this happened at about 4.00 p.m. Prosecutrix thereafter narrated the entire incident to her father P.W. 2. According to the prosecution, since it was about sunset time and there was no conveyance available to go to police station at Rajiasar, which was at a distance of about 14 kms., the informant, P.W. 2 went to the police station next morning after arranging for a jeep at about 10.00 a.m. At the police station, the Station House Officer was not available and he was told by the other policeman present there to bring his daughter so that his report could be recorded. He, therefore, sent his son back to the village in the jeep and thereafter prosecutrix, P.W. 1 came to the police station at about 4.00 p.m. By that time the Station House Officer had come and he was able to lodge his report Ext. P.1.
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