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Friday, February 11, 2011

Acquitted in Murder case U/Sections 304-B, 302 and 201 IPC.

The case of the prosecution in brief is that, the marriage of the appellant-accused with deceased was performed about six years back prior to the date of incident. After the marriage, they lived happily for a period of four years and out of the wedlock, they were blessed with one male child, who is aged about 1 ½ years as on the date of offence. Later, the accused addicted to bad vices like drinking and used to return home during night hours and used to beat the deceased demanding to bring additional dowry of Rs.20,000/-. The accused had been harassing the deceased mentally and physically for the last two years. Unable to tolerate the torture of the accused, the deceased used to inform her parents about the cruelty of the accused. On 7.1.2004 at about 2.30 hours, the accused picked up quarrel with the deceased and as usual demanded additional dowry and during such heated arguments, the accused grew wild, throttled her to death by pressing her throat and committed her murder. Later, in order to cause disappearance of evidence and to mislead the case, he poured kerosene on the body of the deceased and set it on fire. The charges under Sections 304-B, 302 and 201 IPC have been framed against the accused. The Trial Court on appreciation of oral and documentary evidence on record, found that the prosecution failed to prove the guilt of the accused for the offence under Section 304-B IPC and acquitted him of the said charge but found guilty of the charge under Section 302 and 201 IPC and sentenced him to imprisonment as aforementioned. The prosecution failed to establish that the accused was present in the house at the time of occurrence. Hence, the principles laid down in the case of Trimukh Maroti Kirkan cannot be made applicable to convict the accused for the offences under Sections 302 and 201 IPC. In the absence of any other acceptable evidence adduced by the prosecution, the appellant-accused cannot be convicted for the offences under Sections 302 and 201 IPC. In the result, the appeal is allowed. The convictions and sentences recorded against the appellant-accused for the offences punishable under Sections 302 and 201 IPC, are set aside and he is acquitted of the said charges. He shall be set at liberty forthwith if not required in any other crime. The fine amount, if any, paid by the appellant-accused shall be refunded to him. The above said case was argued by me before the Division Bench of Hon'ble High Court of A.P. on behalf of the accused and set him free.

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