Decided on December 19,2012

Smt. Sunita And Others Appellant


U.C. Dhyani, J. - (1.) One Vikram Singh Bhandari, owner of Neelkanth Lodge, lodged a complaint (Ext. Ka-3) in Police Station Laxman Jhoola, on 23.05.2005, that a tour party comprising of four male members, two female members and two children came to his Lodge in the evening of 21.05.2005 and hired two rooms for night stay. The first room was booked in the name of Tejender Singh r/o District Ludhiyana (Punjab). This tour party, which was headed by Tejender Singh left the hotel in the morning of 22.05.2005. Since the payment was made, therefore, the caretaker of the hotel did not take notice of the fact that they (visitors) have checked out. In the morning of 23.05.2005, at about 4:00 a.m., informant Vikram Singh Bhandari sent one of his employee Rajpal Bharadwaj in room no. 08 for ensuring water supply in the said room. Rajpal Bharadwaj found a dead body of a member of the tourist party in room no. 08. He found that there were injuries on the head of the tourist. His feet were tied. It was suspected that the victim was killed by Tejender Singh and his companions. On the basis of said complaint, chik FIR (Ext. Ka-11) was lodged in P.S. Laxman Jhoola on 23.05.2005 at 7:30 a.m., which was registered as case crime no. 170 of 2005 for the offence punishable under Sections 302/201 IPC. Incident was alleged to have taken place in the intervening night of 21/22.05.2005. The distance between the place of occurrence and PS concerned was only 24 kilometers, hence there appeared to be some delay in lodging the first information report.
(2.) Investigation began on the basis of said first information report. PW 8 Jawahar Lal took over the investigation of the case, inspected the place of occurrence, took the statements of the witnesses, affected arrest of the accused, prepared site plan and after being satisfied with the fact that the accused committed the offence, a charge-sheet (Ext. Ka-25) for the offences punishable under Sections 302/201 IPC was submitted against the accused-appellants. [It appears that some of the co-accused were absconding and therefore, their case was separated from the case of accused-appellants]. When the trial began and prosecution opened it's case, charges for the offences punishable under Sections 302/34 IPC and Sections 201/34 IPC were framed against the accused persons, namely, Atar Singh, Jagdish Dhingra, Smt. Rajesh and Smt. Sunita, to which they pleaded not guilty and claimed trial. As many as 10 prosecution witnesses, namely, PW 1 Nanak Chand Ahuja, PW Pawan Kumar, PW 3 Vikram Singh Bhandari, PW 4 Sikandar, PW 5 Dhan Singh, PW 6 Vidya Bhushan Singh Negi, PW 7 HC Chandan Singh, PW 8 Dr. P.K. Bhatnagar and PW 10 Naushad Anasri were examined on behalf of prosecution. Incriminating evidence was put to the accused persons under Section 313 Cr.P.C., in which they denied the allegations and said that they were falsely implicated in the case. No evidence was given in defence.
(3.) After considering the evidence on record, learned trial court convicted accused-appellants Atar Singh, Smt. Rajesh, Smt. Sunita and Jagdish Dhingra for the offences punishable under Section 302 IPC and Section 201 IPC. They were sentenced to undergo imprisonment for life and a fine of INR 5000/- in connection with the offence punishable under Sections 302/34 IPC. They were sentenced to undergo rigorous imprisonment for three years and a fine of INR 2,000/- in connection with offence punishable under Sections 201/34 IPC. Aggrieved against the order of conviction and sentence, present criminal appeal was preferred.;

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