Hon'ble Servesh Kumar Gupta, J. -
(1.) APPELLANTS Suresh Chandra Tiwari and Bhuwan Chandra Punetha have assailed the judgment and order dated 20.2.2003 rendered by the Sessions Judge, Pithoragarh in Sessions Trial No. 36/ 1997, State v. Suresh Chandra Tiwari & Anr., whereby both the appellants have been held guilty for the offences punishable under Section 302 read with Section 34 IPC and have been sentenced to undergo imprisonment for life and a fine of rupees five thousand each. Appellants have also been convicted under Section 201 read with Section 34 IPC and have been sentenced to undergo rigorous imprisonment for three years and a fine of rupees two thousand each. Its a case of murder. There is no eyewitness account of the alleged incident and the entire case of the prosecution is based on circumstantial evidence. The prosecution story, in brief, is that deceased Suresh Chand Upreti was aged about 36 years and was resident of village & Patti Erakot. Accused appellant no. 1 Suresh Chandra Tiwari also hails from the same village, while appellant no. 2 Bhuwan Chandra Punetha, belongs to another nearby village Bhumlai, which falls in the same Patti Erakot. Thus, accused appellants and the deceased belonged to the same area and were known to each other. In the morning of 3.2.1997, Suresh Chandra Upreti was found dead, lying in the terrace of the shop of one Mohan Singh (PW3). It was alleged that the accused appellants murdered Suresh Chandra Upreti sometime in the evening of 2.2.1997. An FIR was lodged on 3.2.1997 by PW7 Harish Chandra Upreti, an Advocate practicing in the nearby city Lohaghat and brother of the deceased, with the averment that he was informed by some villagers on 3.2.1997 at 9.30 am that his brother was lying dead in the verandah of the shop of Mohan Singh and requested inquiry into the matter. FIR is Ex. Ka -2.
(2.) AFTER lodging of the FIR, the police swung into action and inspected the spot. Inquest report Ex. Ka -8 was prepared on the same day i.e. on 3.2.1997 between 10 am to 11 am. Thereafter the dead body was sealed and sent for post -mortem. Witnesses of the inquest, namely, Harish Chandra Upreti, Basudev Upreti, Jagdish Chandra Tiwari, Tara Datt Tiwari & Mohan Upreti, opined that the deceased Suresh Chandra Upreti died of ante mortem injuries. Post -mortem of the dead body was conducted by PW1 Dr. U.S. Adhikari, who also prepared the post -mortem report Ex. Ka -1, wherein following injuries were reported:
(1) Incised wound on top of scalp in mid occipital area about 4 cm x 1 cm, margins smooth regular, bleeding present, direction oblique.
(2) Incised wound on occipital area right side about 2.5 cm x 1 cm, bone deep, margins regular smooth, bleeding present, 6 cm poster to right car, direction is oblique.
(3) Contusion on left forearm about 1.5 cm x 1 cm, irregular, brown colour, 1 cm above left eyebrow.
(4) Contused abrasion on right arm shoulder & elbow joint, about 15 cm x 3 cm, brown colour.
(5) Contusion on both wrist joint about 6 cm x 1.5 cm, brown in colour.
(6) Contused abrasion on right knee about 4 cm x 1.5 cm, brown colour, irregular shape.
(7) Contused abrasion on left knee about 3 cm x 1 cm, brown colour, irregular shape.
(8) Abrasion on left leg about 2 cm x 1 cm, irregular shape, 10 cm below left knee joint.
(9) Abrasion on right hip about 3 cm x 2 cm, irregular, brown colour.
(10) Abrasion on left hip about 4 cm x 1.5 cm, irregular, brown colour.
On internal examination, it was revealed that occipital bone of the deceased was broken and his brain was blood soaked. In the opinion of the Doctor, the death occurred around one day back, possibly on 2.2.1997 at about 5.30 pm, and this was the time of incident which is revealed from the evidence also. The Doctor has further stated that injury no. (1) to (5) could only be possible on account of blow given by sharp edged stone, while rest of the injuries could be caused by blunt object.
(3.) THE case of prosecution is that Suresh Chandra Tiwari along with co -accused Bhuwan Chandra Punetha assassinated Suresh Chandra Upreti by giving him blows of sharp edged stone. The allegation of the prosecution is also corroborated by the medical evidence referred to above.;