TARKESHWAR SAHU Vs. STATE OF BIHAR
LAWS(SC)-2006-9-127
SUPREME COURT OF INDIA (FROM: JHARKHAND)
Decided on September 29,2006

TARKESHWAR SAHU Appellant
VERSUS
STATE OF BIHAR Respondents





Cited Judgements :-

MD. ASHFAR ALI @ AFSAR ALI VS. THE STATE OF ASSAM [LAWS(GAU)-2013-5-103] [REFERRED TO]
DILIP SAHOO VS. STATE OF WEST BENGAL [LAWS(CAL)-2021-12-47] [REFERRED TO]
PADAM VS. STATE [LAWS(CAL)-2013-2-27] [REFERRED TO]
SANJAY DAS VS. STATE OF MADHYA PRADESH [LAWS(CHH)-2011-2-8] [REFERRED TO]
STATE OF H P VS. AMRISH KUMAR [LAWS(HPH)-2008-12-3] [REFERRED TO]
S.K. BHALLA VS. STATE [LAWS(DLH)-2011-5-313] [REFERRED TO]
RAJU ALIAS RAJYA VS. STATE OF MAHARASHTRA [LAWS(BOM)-2019-6-131] [REFERRED TO]
DHANESH ALIAS KONDA BANJARE VS. STATE OF CHHATTISGARH [LAWS(CHH)-2007-5-5] [REFERRED TO]
STATE OF GUJARAT VS. SUDA KARA RABARI [LAWS(GJH)-2014-3-126] [REFERRED TO]
DINATHSO CHAITOM VS. STATE OF ARUNACHAL PRADESH [LAWS(GAU)-2018-2-205] [REFERRED TO]
STATE OF SIKKIM VS. SANGAY SHERPA [LAWS(SIK)-2013-3-1] [REFERRED TO]
CHANDRAN VS. STATE OF KERALA [LAWS(KER)-2013-4-150] [REFERRED TO]
DENIS MUKHIM VS. STATE OF MEGHALAYA [LAWS(MEGH)-2020-3-4] [REFERRED TO]
FIROZ MIAN VS. STATE OF JHARKHAND [LAWS(JHAR)-2018-11-26] [REFERRED TO]
RAJU THAKUR VS. STATE OF JHARKHAND [LAWS(JHAR)-2019-3-124] [REFERRED TO]
RAKESH SARKAR VS. THE STATE OF TRIPURA [LAWS(TRIP)-2015-10-22] [REFERRED TO]
JAGDEV SINGH VS. STATE OF HARYANA [LAWS(P&H)-2010-2-401] [REFERRED]
RATAN BHOWMIK VS. STATE OF TRIPURA [LAWS(TRIP)-2022-4-9] [REFERRED TO]
RAMCHANDRAPPA VS. STATE OF KARNATAKA [LAWS(KAR)-2007-3-65] [REFERRED TO]
MAN SINGH VS. STATE OF RAJASTHAN [LAWS(RAJ)-2013-2-105] [REFERRED TO]
ANIL KUMAR VS. STATE OF KERALA [LAWS(KER)-2023-9-65] [REFERRED TO]
VIJAY SAO, SON OF GEETA LAL SAO VS. STATE OF JHARKHAND [LAWS(JHAR)-2018-10-96] [REFERRED TO]
PARAS NATH BHAGAT S/O BRIJNANDAN BHAGAT VS. STATE OF BIHAR [LAWS(PAT)-2013-8-134] [REFERRED TO]
STATE OF SIKKIM VS. SANGAY SHERPA [LAWS(SIK)-2012-3-5] [REFERRED TO]
VIKRAM KUMAR VS. STATE OF NCT OF DELHI [LAWS(DLH)-2013-5-40] [REFERRED TO]
DHANESH ALIAS KONDA BANJARE VS. STATE OF CHHATTISGARH [LAWS(CHH)-2007-5-9] [REFERRED TO]
BHUPENDRA ALIAS MOTA PATLE VS. STATE OF CHHATTISGARH [LAWS(CHH)-2007-10-10] [REFERRED TO]
MURLI DEWANGAN VS. STATE OF CHHATTISGARH [LAWS(CHH)-2016-2-67] [REFERRED]
KAMLESH VS. STATE OF U P [LAWS(ALL)-2014-2-323] [REFERRED TO]
HARICHARAN SINGH VS. THE STATE [LAWS(CAL)-2015-11-5] [REFERRED TO]
SURAJKUMAR SATYABRATH PAL VS. STATE OF MAHARASHTRA AND ORS. [LAWS(BOM)-2015-1-154] [REFERRED TO]
MADHU V.T. VS. STATE OF KERALA [LAWS(KER)-2014-3-99] [REFERRED TO]
SOMVEER @ LALLA VS. STATE [LAWS(DLH)-2020-3-49] [REFERRED TO]
MANIRUL HAQUE VS. STATE OF WEST BENGAL [LAWS(CAL)-2023-11-26] [REFERRED TO]
STATE VS. PANKAJ CHAUDHARY [LAWS(DLH)-2011-8-270] [REFERRED TO]
ISHWAR VS. STATE [LAWS(DLH)-2012-1-25] [REFERRED TO]
RAJNATH ALIAS RAAJNATH VS. STATE OF MADHYA PRADESH [LAWS(CHH)-2012-10-12] [REFERRED TO]
RAJESH K.S.N. VS. STATE [LAWS(KAR)-2023-7-403] [REFERRED TO]
MANGO @ MANGALBHAI PRATAPBHAI PAGI VS. STATE OF GUJARAT [LAWS(GJH)-2014-6-72] [REFERRED TO]
JISHAN S/O. BASIR QURESHI VS. STATE OF MAHARASHTRA [LAWS(BOM)-2019-4-67] [REFERRED TO]
DEEPAK DARJEE VS. THE STATE OF SIKKIM [LAWS(SIK)-2016-7-1] [REFERRED TO]
PANDHARINATH VS. STATE OF MAHARASHTRA [LAWS(SC)-2009-7-156] [REFERRED TO]
SANNAIA SUBBA VS. STATE OF A P [LAWS(SC)-2008-7-132] [REFERRED TO]
NETAI DAS VS. THE STATE OF WEST BENGAL & ANR. [LAWS(CAL)-2016-4-85] [REFERRED TO]
ARABUL MOLLA @ ARA VS. STATE OF WEST BENGAL [LAWS(CAL)-2016-9-22] [REFERRED TO]
SUKUR ALI VS. STATE OF ASSAM [LAWS(GAU)-2008-4-25] [REFERRED TO]
NAGEGOWDA VS. STATE OF KARNATAKA [LAWS(KAR)-2015-7-325] [REFERRED TO]
CHENTHAMARA VS. STATE OF KERALA [LAWS(KER)-2008-3-34] [REFERRED TO]
RAJ KUMAR VS. STATE OF H.P. [LAWS(HPH)-2007-11-11] [REFERRED TO]
SHAILESH VS. STATE OF GUJARAT [LAWS(GJH)-2015-6-111] [REFERRED TO]
BABUL KHAN WALI VS. STATE OF MAHARASHTRA [LAWS(BOM)-2021-2-136] [REFERRED TO]
MUNNA ANSARI SON OF NAIMUDDIN ANSARI VS. STATE OF JHARKHAND [LAWS(JHAR)-2018-12-96] [REFERRED TO]
SUJAN DAS VS. STATE OF TRIPURA [LAWS(TRIP)-2021-10-6] [REFERRED TO]
MAKHAN VS. STATE OF M P [LAWS(MPH)-2007-10-96] [REFERRED]
GHISO DAS SON OF LATE CHHANGORI DAS VS. THE STATE OF JHARKHAND [LAWS(JHAR)-2018-7-97] [REFERRED TO]
PRADEEP GON VS. STATE OF JHARKHAND [LAWS(JHAR)-2018-8-161] [REFERRED TO]
GIRISH CHANDRA SHARMA VS. THE STATE OF BIHAR [LAWS(PAT)-2015-7-152] [REFERRED TO]
KARANPAL VS. STATE OF UTTARAKHAND [LAWS(UTN)-2020-1-67] [REFERRED TO]
ANIL KUMAR (IN JAIL) VS. STATE OF U P [LAWS(ALL)-2014-7-472] [REFERRED TO]
HAREN BORAH VS. STATE OF ASSAM [LAWS(GAU)-2011-5-21] [REFERRED TO]
JAYESHBHAI CHHAGANBHAI PRAJAPATI VS. STATE OF GUJARAT [LAWS(GJH)-2016-4-175] [REFERRED TO]
SHAILESH VS. STATE OF GUJARAT [LAWS(GJH)-2015-11-30] [REFERRED TO]
YADU KUMAR VS. STATE OF CHHATISGARH [LAWS(CHH)-2007-5-3] [REFERRED TO]
CHIRAGUDDIN VS. STATE OF MADHYA PRADESH [LAWS(MPH)-2019-3-91] [REFERRED TO]
ANBARASAN VS. STATE [LAWS(MAD)-2015-12-288] [REFERRED TO]
TEN TSHERING LEPCHA VS. THE STATE OF SIKKIM [LAWS(SIK)-2015-7-5] [REFERRED TO]
PASSANG LEPCHA VS. STATE OF SIKKIM [LAWS(SIK)-2014-4-1] [REFERRED TO]
STATE OF SIKKIM VS. ROSHAN KUMAR CHETTRI [LAWS(SIK)-2015-6-18] [REFERRED TO]
JUNE BORDOLOI VS. STATE OF MEGHALAYA [LAWS(MEGH)-2021-2-16] [REFERRED TO]
REGHUNADHAN NAIR VS. STATE OF KERALA [LAWS(KER)-2021-9-69] [REFERRED TO]
PURNENDU AICH VS. STATE OF TRIPURA [LAWS(TRIP)-2022-4-13] [REFERRED TO]
MIKAL BHUJEL ALIAS RUBEEN VS. STATE OF SIKKIM [LAWS(SIK)-2021-4-16] [REFERRED TO]
T.V. MAMACHAN VS. JOINT REGISTRAR OF CO-OPERATIVE SOCIETIES [LAWS(KER)-2017-8-386] [REFERRED TO]
SHIVA SANKAR BABA VS. STATE [LAWS(MAD)-2023-3-13] [REFERRED TO]
CHAITU LAL VS. STATE OF UTTARAKHAND [LAWS(SC)-2019-11-66] [REFERRED TO]
PARVEZ AHMAD DAR VS. STATE OF J&K [LAWS(J&K)-2017-9-57] [REFERRED TO]
RATIRAM VS. STATE OF M P [LAWS(MPH)-2017-8-125] [REFERRED TO]
KALLYANJOY REANG VS. STATE OF TRIPURA [LAWS(TRIP)-2020-6-16] [REFERRED TO]
STATE OF HIMACHAL PRADESH VS. BHARAT BHUSHAN [LAWS(HPH)-2010-4-38] [REFERRED TO]
CHANDRA MOHAN BARMAN VS. STATE OF TRIPURA [LAWS(GAU)-2012-6-66] [REFERRED TO]
SUBASH CHANDRA ADHIKARY VS. STATE OF ARUNACHAL PRADESH [LAWS(GAU)-2010-8-15] [REFERRED TO]
RATAN ACHARJEE VS. STATE OF TRIPURA [LAWS(GAU)-2008-4-21] [REFERRED TO]
SUNEEL KUMAR VS. STATE OF U P [LAWS(ALL)-2014-9-446] [REFERRED TO]
TUTUL SK. VS. THE STATE OF WEST BENGAL [LAWS(CAL)-2016-1-41] [REFERRED TO]
SANTOSH VS. STATE N C T OF DELHI [LAWS(DLH)-2011-2-321] [REFERRED TO]
AVTAR SINGH VS. STATE [LAWS(DLH)-2010-12-152] [REFERRED TO]
RAMESH CHANDRA SAHU VS. STATE OF ODISHA [LAWS(ORI)-2021-6-47] [REFERRED TO]
NANDLAL DAS VS. STATE OF BIHAR [LAWS(PAT)-2014-2-68] [REFERRED TO]
CHETAN SINGH VS. STATE [LAWS(P&H)-2015-7-158] [REFERRED TO]
BHURA @ NASEEM VS. STATE OF UTTARAKHAND [LAWS(UTN)-2013-7-54] [REFERRED TO]
S.P.S. RATHORE VS. C.B.I. & ANR. [LAWS(SC)-2016-9-36] [REFERRED TO]
STATE OF RAJASTHAN VS. SRI CHAND [LAWS(SC)-2015-5-23] [REFERRED TO]
TIKA RAM CHETTRI VS. STATE OF SIKKIM [LAWS(SIK)-2010-5-4] [REFERRED TO]
RINTU YADAV VS. STATE OF BIHAR [LAWS(PAT)-2008-2-6] [REFERRED TO]
AJAHAR ALI VS. STATE OF WEST BENGAL [LAWS(SC)-2013-10-9] [REFERRED TO]
RADHAKRISHNA NAGESH VS. STATE OF ANDHRA PRADESH [LAWS(SC)-2012-12-52] [REFERRED TO]
RAJVEER SINGH VS. STATE OF PUNJAB [LAWS(P&H)-2010-2-52] [REFERRED TO]
ANUKUL CHANDRA NATH VS. STATE OF TRIPURA [LAWS(TRIP)-2019-7-23] [REFERRED TO]
BIMAL SAHA VS. STATE OF TRIPURA [LAWS(TRIP)-2020-5-35] [REFERRED TO]
RAM CHANDRA DAS @ RAMU VS. STATE OF TRIPURA [LAWS(TRIP)-2013-12-2] [REFERRED TO]
MADVACHARYA VS. STATE OF KARNATAKA [LAWS(KAR)-2023-8-1070] [REFERRED TO]
RAJESH KUMAR DUBEY VS. STATE OF U. P. [LAWS(ALL)-2022-11-119] [REFERRED TO]
BINDER PASI VS. STATE OF U P [LAWS(ALL)-2014-7-356] [REFERRED TO]
PANKAJ VS. STATE OF U P [LAWS(ALL)-2014-8-442] [REFERRED TO]
NIRUPAMA BAJPAI D/O LATE GAYAPRASAD BAIPAI VS. JUGAL KISHORE GILDA [LAWS(CHH)-2017-7-74] [REFERRED TO]
RAM LAL GADERIA VS. STATE OF UP [LAWS(ALL)-2012-5-84] [REFERRED TO]
KAMLESH CHAUDHARY VS. STATE OF BIHAR AND ANOTHER [LAWS(PAT)-2015-5-137] [REFERRED TO]
NARINDER KUMAR SHARMA VS. STATE OF PUNJAB [LAWS(P&H)-2015-9-89] [REFERRED TO]
ASHOK KUMAR VS. STATE OF RAJASTHAN [LAWS(RAJ)-2015-7-303] [REFERRED]
CHENTHAMARA VS. STATE OF KERALA [LAWS(KER)-2007-3-695] [REFERRED TO]
FAYAZ AHMAD DAR VS. UT. OF J & K [LAWS(J&K)-2021-7-13] [REFERRED TO]
JAGDISH AHIRWAR VS. STATE OF M P [LAWS(MPH)-2017-2-185] [REFERRED TO]
RAMJOY KUMAR REANG VS. STATE OF TRIPURA [LAWS(TRIP)-2016-3-89] [REFERRED]
ASHWINI RAATRE VS. STATE OF CHHATTISGARH [LAWS(CHH)-2009-10-5] [REFERRED TO]
MOHD SAGEER KHAN VS. STATE OF U P [LAWS(ALL)-2014-7-459] [REFERRED TO]
SHANKAR S/O RAMBHAUJI THAKRE VS. STATE OF MAHARASHTRA [LAWS(BOM)-2018-1-4] [REFERRED TO]
KAVITA CHANDRAKANT LAKHANI VS. STATE OF MAHARASHTRA [LAWS(BOM)-2013-5-58] [REFERRED TO]
YADU KUMAR PATEL VS. STATE OF CHHATTISGARH [LAWS(CHH)-2007-3-5] [REFERRED TO]
DURGESH PANDEY VS. STATE [LAWS(DLH)-2019-7-342] [REFERRED TO]
RAJ KUMAR @ RAJU VS. STATE OF HARYANA [LAWS(P&H)-2013-8-1155] [REFERRED]


JUDGEMENT

- (1.)This appeal is directed against the judgement of the Jharkhand High Court at Ranchi, Jharkhand passed in Criminal Appeal No. 277 of 1999, dismissing the appeal filed by the Appellant and upholding the judgement of the Additional Judicial Commissioner, Ranchi, whereby the Appellant was found guilty for the offence punishable under Ss. 376/511 of Indian Penal Code and was sentenced to undergo rigorous imprisonment for seven years.
(2.)Facts which are necessary to dispose of this appeal, in nutshell, are as follows.
2.1. On 18.02.1998, at about 1.30 a.m., Tara Muni Kumari, aged about 12 years, came out of her house to answer the call of nature. The appellant at that time had forcibly taken her to his Gumti for committing illicit sexual intercourse with her. The said Gumti of the appellant was only few feet away from the house of the prosecutrix. It is alleged that the prosecutrix raised an alarm, and immediately thereafter several persons including PW1 Ram Charan Baitha, the informant and the father of the prosecutrix, Sahdeo Sahu PW2, Deonandan Sahu PW3 the Sarpanch of the village, Jewalal Sahu PW6 came from the adjoining houses and caught the appellant before he could even make any attempt to ravish her. Due to immediate arrival of PW1 and other co-villagers on hearing hue and cry raised by the prosecutrix, the appellant could not succeed in ravishing her. Immediately after this episode, PW1 Ram Charan Baitha, father of the prosecutrix along with other villagers, who appeared as witnesses in this case, had gone to the police station and lodged a first information report at 2.30 a.m. The FIR was lodged within one hour of the incident. All the persons who had gone to the police station and later appeared as witnesses were residing in the close vicinity and were natural witnesses to the incident. The appellant was charged for the offence punishable under Ss. 376/511 of the Indian Penal Code, to which he did not plead guilty and claimed himself to be innocent. According to him, he was falsely implicated in the instant case at the instance of Gyan Kumar Sahu PW5 and the informant Ram Charan Baitha PW1.

2.2. The prosecution had examined ten witnesses to substantiate its case. The prosecutrix Tara Muni Kumari was examined as PW7. Sahdeo Sahu PW2, a retired school teacher, who resided in the same vicinity. Deonandan Sahu, another neighbour was examined as PW3. Bahadur Baitha, the brother of the prosecutrix was examined as PW4. Gyan Kumar Sahu, a student of Modern College was examined as PW5. Jewalal Sahu was examined as PW6. Manju Devi, mother of the prosecutrix was examined as PW8. Ram Prasad Baitha, grandfather of the prosecutrix was examined as PW9 and Ishwar Dayal Singh, Assistant Sub-Inspector was examined as PW10.

2.3. The statements of PW1 to PW5 are consistent, in which all of them had stated that they resided in close proximity to the house of the accused and victim Tara Muni Kumari. On 18.02.1998, at 1.30 a.m., on hearing an alarm of the prosecutrix, they got up and ran to the Gumti of the appellant and found that the prosecutrix Tara Muni Kumari was crying in front of the appellant Tarkeshwar Sahu. Number of villagers had also assembled there. In the presence of all of them, she had narrated that the appellant had forcibly lifted her and took her to his Gumti with the clear intention to outrage her modesty but the appellant had failed in his attempt because on raising an alarm by the prosecutrix the father of the prosecutrix and other villagers had assembled there. Statements of PW1 to PW5 were recorded during 24.06.1998 to 15.07.1998. Their statements by and large narrate the consistent version. These witnesses firmly withstood the cross-examination. Other set of witnesses who were examined later on from 12.08.1998 to 10.03.1999 had not supported the version of the prosecution and consequently they were declared hostile. It is quite evident that the witnesses which were examined from 12.08.1998 to 10.03.1999 were won over by the appellant. There is clear and cogent evidence of PW1 to PW5 on record supporting the entire prosecution story. The prosecutrix, PW7 was declared hostile but in her cross- examination she had clearly mentioned as under: "Tarkeshwar Sahu tried to commit rape on my person, but did not succeed due to protest made by me; he used to tease other girls also."

In further cross-examination, PW7 stated that "I cannot tell who the person was."

2.4. On the basis of the above statement, PW7 was declared hostile. PW8 and PW9 also did not support the prosecution story and they were also declared hostile. Ishwar Dayal Singh, Assistant Sub-Inspector was examined as PW10. He gave elaborate description of the Gumti. He submitted that he had recorded the statements of the witnesses. According to the statements of the witnesses, they saw Tara Muni and Tarkeshwar coming out of the Gumti. The prosecutrix clearly stated that the appellant forcibly took her and kept her inside the Gumti. The prosecutrix further stated that the appellant took her in his lap inside the Gumti and told her to lie down with the intention to commit rape on her. The trial court arrived at a finding that the prosecution had fully established the charge under Ss. 376/511 of the Indian Penal Code against the appellant Tarkeshwar Sahu beyond all reasonable doubt. Consequently, the appellant was found guilty under Ss. 376/511 of the Indian Penal Code and he was convicted and sentenced to seven years rigorous imprisonment.

2.5 Being aggrieved by the judgement of the trial court, the appellant had preferred an appeal before the Jharkhand High Court at Ranchi. The learned Single Judge carefully scrutinized the entire evidence on record. The High Court observed that there is a twelve feet wide road which intervenes between the house of the appellant and that of the informant PW1, the father of the prosecutrix. The Gumti in question was in the east of the house of the appellant and was on the front of the road. The Investigating Officer, in para 9 of his evidence, had deposed that the distance of the Gumti from the place where prosecutrix had gone to answer the call of nature was about 50 yards. The High Court also observed that there was evidence on record to show that the houses of PWs 2, 3, 4 and 5 were located close to the said Gumti. It was established from the evidence on record that the appellant used to sleep in the said Gumti for the last three months prior to the alleged incident whereas, his parents used to sleep in the house. The High Court had critically examined the entire prosecution version. Relevant portion of the judgement reads as under: "PW7 Tara Muni Kumari, the daughter of the informant has deposed that in the night of the occurrence she had come out from her house for nature's call and one unknown person caught her and attempted to confine her in the said Gumti and she raised alarms and the neighbours came there and they caught the said man. However, she was declared hostile by the prosecution. She has stated in her cross-examination that it was a dark night and nothing was visible and she did not identify that man and she also did not know his name till date.

Manju Devi, PW8 mother of Tara Muni Kumari has deposed that Tara Muni Kumari had come out of her house for nature's call and one unknown person carried her inside the Gumti stuffing her mouth and on her alarms she came to the Gumti and saw her daughter and the said man (Tarkeswar Sahu) coming out of the said Gumti. She has also deposed that she does not identify that man. She has also been declared hostile by the prosecution. In her cross-examination, she has disclosed that the person who has carried her daughter inside the said Gumti is not the resident of the locality and she does not identify him.

Ram Prasad Baitha, PW9 the paternal grand father of Tara Muni Kumari who has also been declared hostile by the prosecution has deposed that Tara Muni Kumari had told her that one unknown person has carried her to the said Gumti. It, therefore, appears from the evidence of PWs 7,8 and 9 that they have not named the appellant as a participant in the occurrence carrying Tara Muni Kumari from the place where she had gone for nature's call to the said Gumti. However, PW7 has deposed very categorically that the persons who had assembled there had apprehended the said man and PW3 Deonandan Sahu has deposed that the said apprehended person was none but the appellant who has been brought to the police station. It is equally relevant to mention here that PW7 and PW8 however corroborates the prosecution case that Tara Muni Kumari has been carried to the said Gumti and confined there and she has raised alarms. PW1 Ram Charan Baitha, the informant has deposed that on the alarms raised by her daughter Tara Muni Kumari, he ran to the said Gumti belonging to the appellant and found Tara Muni Kumari crying there in front of the said Gumti and the villagers came there. However, he has also stated in the next breath that Tara Muni Kumari was raising alarms inside the Gumti and the appellant opened the Gumti and Tara Muni Kumari and the appellant came out of the said Gumti. He has further deposed that on query Tara Muni Kumari told him that when she had come for the nature's call the appellant forcibly carried her and brought her inside the Gumti where he attempted to ravish her but because she raised alarms the appellant could not succeed in ravishing her.

PW2 Sahdeo Sahu, PW3 Deonandan Sahu and PW4 Bahadur Baitha in their evidence on oath has corroborated the testimony of the informant in material particulars. PW5 had also come to the place of occurrence on alarms and when he reached to the place of occurrence he found Tara Muni Kumari outside the Gumti and he was told about the incident. It, therefore, stands established by the evidence on the record that Tara Muni Kumari was carried to the said Gumti and confined there and on alarms when the informant and others assembled there she came out of the said Gumti along with the appellant who was apprehended by them and brought to the police station and inside the said Gumti the appellant had made attempt to ravish her but due to the intervening circumstance he could not succeed in his attempt in respect thereof. Even PW2 in para 9 of his cross-examination has stated that the parents of the appellant had also accompanied the informant and others to the said police station along with the appellant who was apprehended by the informant and others. It is a circumstance of unimpeachable character which supports the prosecution case regarding the participation of the appellant in the occurrence in question and in this view of the matter the absence of identification of the appellant by PW7 and PW8 does not cut much ice. Furthermore, PW10, the I.O. has categorically deposed that PW7 has stated before him that the appellant has lifted her in his lap and confined her in the Gumti and attempted to ravish her and PW8 in her statement has also stated that PW7 Tara Muni had told her that the appellant has carried her to the said Gumti. It, therefore, appears that PW7 and PW8 have deliberately suppressed in their evidence regarding the identification of the appellant as a participant in this case. Thus, the non-identification by PW7 and PW8 of the appellant as a participant in the occurrence in question in view of the overwhelming evidence of the other witnesses of the prosecution who are natural, competent and independent witness of the occurrence does not at all cast a cloud of suspicion to the credibility of the warf and woof of the prosecution case."

2.6. The High Court also observed that the prosecution witnesses had no animus to depose falsely against the appellant. According to the impugned judgment, there was no semblance of enmity between the appellant on one hand and PWs 1 to 4, 7, 8 and 9 on the other. According to the High Court, all the witnesses were the most natural and independent witnesses of the incident and there was nothing on record to show that they had any animus, grudge or vendetta against the appellant to depose falsely against the appellant. In this view of the matter, the High Court did not see any justification in discarding their testimony. The High Court independently came to the finding that false implication of the appellant was totally ruled out in the facts and circumstances of this case. According to the High Court, the trial court was perfectly justified in awarding the sentence of seven years rigorous imprisonment to the appellant and consequently the appeal filed by the appellant was dismissed by the High Court.

(3.)Looking to the gravity of the offence, we ourselves have examined the entire evidence and documents on record. Even on close scrutiny and marshalling of evidence, we could not persuade ourselves to take a different view than taken by the courts below as far as the conviction of the appellant is concerned. In our considered view, the prosecution version is both, truthful and credible. We are clearly of the view that the appellant had forcibly taken the prosecutrix to the Gumti to outrage her modesty but before he could do anything, on raising an alarm by the prosecutrix, the father of the prosecutrix and other villagers had assembled there and she was rescued.


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