Criminal Appeal No. 802 of 2007. Case: Manoj Shivajirao Patil and Ors Vs State of Maharashtra. Bombay High Court

Case Number:Criminal Appeal No. 802 of 2007
Party Name:Manoj Shivajirao Patil and Ors Vs State of Maharashtra
Counsel:For Appellant: B. R. Patil i/b Amol Patankar, Adv. and For Respondents: D. P. Adsule, APP
Judges:Mrs. V. K. Tahilramani , J. and Mrs. Sadhana S. Jadhav , J.
Issue:Indian Penal Code (45 of 1860) - Section 300; Evidence Act (1 of 1872) - Section 106
Citation:2013 CriLJ 2576
Judgement Date:January 15, 2013
Court:Bombay High Court

Judgment:

Sadhana S. Jadhav, J.

  1. The appellants herein are convicted by I Ad hoc Sessions Judge, Solapur in Sessions Case No. 74 of 2006 by judgment and order dated 21st July, 2007 for offence punishable under Section 302 r/w 34 of Indian Penal Code and are sentenced to suffer imprisonment for life and to pay fine of Rs. 1000/- i.d. to suffer S.I. for 3 months. They are also convicted for the offence punishable under Section 498A r/w 34 of Indian Penal Code and are sentenced to suffer R.I. for 3 years and to pay fine of Rs. 1000/- i.d to suffer S.I. for 3 months. They are also convicted for the offence punishable under Section 201 r/w 34 of Indian Penal Code and sentenced to suffer R.I. for 3 years and to pay fine of Rs. 1000/- i.d to suffer S.I. for 3 months. Being aggrieved by the said judgment and order, the appellants have filed the present Appeal.

  2. Such of the facts which are necessary for the decision of this Appeal are as follows:

    (i) Manoj (hereinafter referred as accused No. 1) was married to Trupti (since deceased), daughter of Keshavrao Bhaurao Deshmukh on 15/7/2005 at village Kallamb. Initially Trupti was treated well. On 10/12/2005 Sudarshan, son of Manik Bargule, resident of village Shelgaon had informed Pangari Police Station that on 10/12/2005, he had returned from Barshi at about 5.30 p.m. and at that time he learnt that Trupti, wife of Manoj Patil had died due to burn injuries in her residential house. He therefore, visited the said house. The members of Patil family were not at home. He saw the dead body of Trupti and reported the matter to the police station. On the basis of his report A.D. No. 50 of 2005 was registered by Pangari Police Station under Section 174 of Cr. P.C., 1973.

    (ii) On 11/12/2005 Keshavrao Bhaurao Deshmukh lodged the report at Pangari Police Station alleging therein that deceased Trupti was his daughter. On 15/7/2005 she was married to Manoj Patil. The marriage was performed at Shelgaon in Vithal Rukmini Temple. At the time of marriage, he had given Rs. 51,000/- to Manoj in cash and had also given five tolas of gold. He further alleged that since 15 days prior to 11/12/2005 Trupti was being harassed by her husband as he was coercing her to fetch Rs. 50,000/- from her parents as he had recently opened a shop of motor spare parts. Trupti had informed her father telephonically on the phone of Mohan Saste. She had disclosed to him that the accused No. 1 was demanding Rs. 50,000/- and was ill-treating her on that count. She had also disclosed that her father-in-law and mother-in-law were ill-treating her on the same count. They also harassed her on the ground that she was not performing her daily domestic chores. On 10/12/2005 at about 6 p.m. his daughter-in-law Archana informed him that one Manikrao Deshmukh had informed them telephonically that Trupti had sustained burns and was in a serious condition and therefore, they were called urgently. Keshavrao, his wife, his daughter-in-law and other relatives immediately hired jeep and went to village Shelgaon. They went to the house of their daughter and saw that dead body of Trupti was lying in the bedroom and it was completely charred. At that time, Manoj was not at home, but his parents were at home. Keshavrao enquired with them and upon enquiry they informed him that on that day there was some quarrel between the husband and wife and when they went to the bedroom they saw that Trupti was completely burned and Manoj had left the house. He disclosed to the police that Manoj and his parents had caused homicidal death of Trupti.

    (iii) On the basis of his report, Crime No. 97 of 2005 was registered at Pangari Police Station against the accused for offence punishable under Sections 302, 201, 304B, 498A r/w 34 of Indian Penal Code. The investigation was set in motion. The accused were arrested on 11/12/2005. After completion of investigation, charge-sheet was filed on 7/3/2006. The case was committed to the Court of Sessions and registered as Sessions Case No. 74 of 2006. The prosecution examined ten witnesses to bring home the guilt to the accused. The accused have examined four witnesses as defence witnesses.

  3. P.W.1 Jabar Kazi is the panch for seizure panchanama of the pillow at the instance of accused No. 1. P.W. 1 has admitted his signature on the memorandum as well as seizure panchanama which are at Exhs. 21 and 22. However, he has not supported the prosecution and has been declared hostile.

    3A. P.W. 2 Tanaji Vidhate is the cousin of the complainant Keshavrao Deshmukh. He has deposed before the Court that on 10/12/2005 the brother of the complainant had requested him to go to Shelgaon. Accordingly, he reached Shelgaon at about 8 p.m. to the house of the accused persons. He saw that Trupti was lying on floor in burnt condition in her bedroom. He enquired with the accused No. 2 about the death of Trupti. Accused No. 2 disclosed to him that a quarrel had taken place between the accused No. 1 and Trupti in the morning. P.W. 2 is also a panch to the spot panchanama. He has proved the contents of the spot panchanama which is at Exh. 25. He has deposed that the police had seized one red colour plastic can of kerosene containing 2 and half liters kerosene, one match box from the bedroom at the time of spot panchanama. The police had also seized some pieces of burnt clothes and pieces of skin from the spot. At the time of spot panchanama, they noticed that some sand was spread towards head portion of the dead body. There was smell of kerosene in the room. Some kerosene which had spread on the floor appeared to be wiped.

  4. P.W. 2 is also a panch for inquest panchanama. At the time of the inquest panchanama, they had noticed that fluid was oozing from the nostrils of Trupti and her body was in a complete burnt condition. The inquest panchanama is at Exh. 26. P.W. 2 has identified the articles seized at the time of spot panchanama and the inquest panchanama. The witness has not been shattered in the cross-examination.

  5. P.W. 3 Rupali Bhosale is the sister of deceased Trupti. She has deposed before the Court that on 5/12/2005 she had spoken to Trupti on her cell phone and Trupti was crying while she was speaking on the phone. Trupti had disclosed that her in-laws were ill-treating her mentally and physically on the ground that she was not doing their household work properly. She was humiliated at the hands of her in-laws. Trupti had disclosed to P.W.3 that her husband was demanding Rs. 50,000/- from her parents...

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