Calcutta High Court


Calcutta High Court: In an appeal dealing with acid attack, the Division bench consisting of Debangsu Basak and Md. Shabbar Rashidi*, JJ., held that deliberate implication of the appellant and impugned judgment of conviction and order of sentence are well founded based on unshaken testimony of ocular as well as documentary evidence.

In the instant matter, on 07-07-2019 the appellant, Jamat Sk, threw acid on the 18 years old daughter of the complainant. She was taken to Bharatpur Hospital and later was referred to Kandi SD Hospital. The victim sustained acid burn injuries on her face and throat. An FIR was lodged by the father of the victim and a case under S. 326-A IPC was registered against the appellant. Based on the case diary, under S. 326-A IPC charge was framed against the appellant. The appellant pleaded not guilty when the charge was duly read over and explained to him. The appellant was put on trial and based on evidence on record and the examination of accused under S. 313 CrPC, he was convicted. The appellant was sentenced to imprisonment of ten years and to pay a fine of Rs. 10,000/. The appellant challenged the conviction and order of sentence in the present appeal.

The appellant contended that it was not possible to identify the perpetrator as it was stated that the appellant threw acid using the Khupris (Holes of any wall) of the kitchen. The appellant contended that none of the witnesses examined by the prosecution have seen the incident or have seen the appellant fleeing away from the place of incident. No independent witness has been examined by the prosecution. The appellant further contended that the prosecution has not been able to prove the case beyond all reasonable doubts.

The respondent/State contended that testimonies of the ocular evidence together with that of the supporting documentary and other evidence prove that appellant alone threw the acid causing acid burn injuries to the victim.

The Court observed that through none of the witnesses examined on behalf of the prosecution claimed that they have seen the appellant throwing acid upon the victim or fleeing away just after the incident but the victim herself without any kind of ambiguity identified the appellant as the perpetrator.

Further, that there is nothing to disbelieve conjoint narration of the prosecution witnesses as there appears any divergence in the story of the prosecution, moreover, time gap between the occurrence and other incidents and the expected time taken in the medical treatment of the victim, clearly rules out any possibility of deliberate implication of the appellant.

It was also observed that the account of injuries evident from the medical evidence is quite in consonance with the testimony of ocular evidence led at the trial. The Court opined that “It is well settled principle of law that where oral evidence is convincing, reliable and trustworthy motive behind the occurrence loses its relevance.”

Affirming the impugned judgment by the Session Court, the Court held that both judgment of conviction and order of sentence deserve no interference as they are well founded on unshaken testimony of ocular as well as documentary evidence and deserve no interference.

[Jamat Sk v. State of W.B., 2022 SCC OnLine Cal 4093, decided on 21-12-2022]

*Judgment authored by: Justice Md. Shabbar Rashidi.

Advocates who appeared in this case :

For appellant: Advocate Manas Kr. Das;

For Respondent/State: Advocates Partha Pratim Das and Manasi Roy.

*Ritu Singh, Editorial Assistant has put this report together.

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