DWARKA DASS Vs. STATE OF HARYANA
SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
STATE OF HARYANA
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Banerjee, J. -
(2.)While there cannot be any denial of the factum that the power and authority to appraise the evidence in an appeal, either against acquittal or conviction stands out to be very comprehensive and wide, but if two views are reasonably possible, on the state of evidence: one supporting the acquittal and the other indicating conviction, then and in that event, the High Court would not be justified in interfering with an order of acquittal, merely because it feels that it, sitting as a trial Court, would have taken the other view. While reappreciating the evidence, the rule of prudence requires that the High Court should give proper weight and consideration to the views of the trial Judge. But if the judgment of the Sessions Judge was absolutely perverse, legally erroneous and based on a wrong appreciation of the evidence, then it would be just and proper for the High Court to reverse the judgment of acquittal, recorded by the Sessions Judge, as otherwise, there would be gross miscarriage of justice so said Pattanaik, J. in Hariram and others vs. State of Rajasthan, (2000) 9 SCC 136.
(3.)Two earlier decisions of this Court ought also to be noticed in this context, namely, Ramesh Babulal Doshi vs. State of Gujarat, (1996) 9 SCC 225, wherein in paragraph 7 of the Report this Court observed :
"7. Before proceeding further it will be pertinent to mention that the entire approach of the High Court in dealing with the appeal was patently wrong for it did not at all address itself to the question as to whether the reasons which weighed with the trial Court for recording the order of acquittal were proper or not. Instead thereof the High Court made an independent reappraisal of the entire evidence to arrive at the above-quoted conclusions. This Court has repeatedly laid down that the mere fact that a view other than the one taken by the trial Court can be legitimately arrived at by the appellate Court on reappraisal of the evidence cannot constitute a valid and sufficient ground to interfere with an order of acquittal unless it comes to the conclusion that the entire approach of the trial Court in dealing with the evidence was patently illegal or the conclusions arrived at by it were wholly untenable. While sitting in judgment over an acquittal the appellate Court is first required to seek an answer to the question whether the findings of the trial Court are palpably wrong, manifestly erroneous or demonstrably unsustainable. If the appellate Court answers the above question in the negative the order of acquittal is not to be disturbed. Conversely, if the appellate Court holds, for reasons to be recorded, that the order of acquittal cannot at all be sustained in view of any of the above infirmities it can then and then only reappraise the evidence to arrive at its own conclusions. In keeping with the above principles we have therefore to first ascertain whether the findings of the trial Court are sustainable or not."
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