Criminal Appeal No. 403 of 2013. Case: Rajendra Baban Chaudhary Vs The State of Maharashtra. Bombay High Court

Case Number:Criminal Appeal No. 403 of 2013
Party Name:Rajendra Baban Chaudhary Vs The State of Maharashtra
Counsel:For Appellant: P. K. Phale, V. R. Gundecha, Advs. and For Respondents: S. M. Jadhav, A. P. P., Adv.
Judges:P. N. Deshmukh, J.
Issue:Indian Penal Code (45 of 1860) - Section 489BC
Citation:2015 CriLJ 2833
Judgement Date:April 15, 2014
Court:Bombay High Court
 
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Judgment:

  1. This Appeal takes exception to the judgment dated 30th September, 2012 passed in Sessions Case No. 69 of 2012 whereby, appellants came to be convicted for offence punishable under Section 489B of Indian Penal Code sentencing to suffer R.I. for five years and pay fine of Rs. 5,000/- in default, to suffer S.I. for three months. The appellants are further convicted for offence punishable under Section 489C of Indian Penal Code and are sentenced to suffer R.I. for three years and pay fine of Rs. 3,000/- in default, to suffer R.I. for two months.

  2. Prosecution case, briefly, can be stated as follows:

    On 26th August, 2012, PW 1 - Ayub Kadar Inamdar, complainant, lodged his report vide Exhibit 54 with Sangamner Police Station contending therein that he is owner of a fruit stall situated at Sangamner S.T. Stand. On the day of incident, when he was present at the shop at about 10:00 a.m., the appellants/accused arrived at his shop in a car. One of them, purchased 2 kg. apples from him and gave a note of Rs. 1,000/- in denomination, however, since the complainant suspected said note, he informed the appellant that he is not having change and would arrange for it from another stall owner. On visiting another stall, the complainant informed said fact to that stall owner. In the meantime, police mobile van, which was on patrolling duty, reached on the spot. The complainant disclosed said fact to the police officer who, therefore, took all the appellants to Sangamner City Police Station along with the complainant. In the police station, the police obtained personal search of the appellants and recovered 35 currency notes of Rs. 1,000/- each in denomination, which were seized along with Indica car having registration No. MH-03-AM-1437.

  3. On the following day, the police sent the currency notes to the Branch Manager of State Bank of India, Sangamner branch, for its verification. Accordingly, report was received from the Branch Manager confirming the fact that the notes sent for verification, were duplicate notes. Thereafter, on the basis of complaint Exhibit 54, offence came to be registered against the appellants vide Crime No. I-103 of 2012 for offence punishable under Sections 489B, 489C, 420, 120B read with Section 34 of Indian Penal Code and was investigated by PW 6 Salunkhe, P.S.I.

  4. It is the case of prosecution that during the course of investigation, appellant No. 1 - Rajendra was interrogated and at his instance, 65 other notes of Rs. 1,000/- each in denomination were discovered. All the currency notes seized as such, were further forwarded to Currency Note Press, Nashik Road, Nashik for its verification. The authorities of Currency Note Press, Nashik confirmed that the notes were duplicate. On completion of investigation, charge sheet came to be filed in the Court of learned Judicial Magistrate F.C., Sangamner.

    In the course of time, the case was committed to the Court of Session for trial. Charge is framed against the appellants showing one accused as absconding. The appellants/accused pleaded not guilty to the charge and claimed to be tried. Learned trial Judge, on considering the evidence on record, convicted the appellants as above, hence, this Appeal.

  5. Heard learned counsel Mr.P.K.Phale instructed by advocate Mr.V.R.Gundecha, for appellants and Mr.S.M.Jadhav, learned A.P.P. for respondent - State.

  6. To effectively evaluate the submissions advanced by learned counsels for both sides, I have scrutinised the evidence with their assistance.

  7. PW 1 - Ayyub Kadar Inamdar, complainant had not supported the case of prosecution and as such, was declared hostile. He stated that he is owner of 'Simla Fruit Stall' situated at S.T. Sand at Sangamner. According to him, on the day of incident, at about 10:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., one customer visited the stall and purchased 2 kg. apples and handed over him currency note of Rs. 1,000/-, which he did not accept as he was not having change and therefore no transaction of sale was complete and the customer went away. The complainant further stated that about half an hour thereafter, he noted that mob had gathered in the S.T. stand premises where one black colour Indica car and a police van was present, however after sometime, he was called in the police station and the police caused him to lodge complaint against the accused.

    The complainant has denied the entire case put to him by learned A.P.P. and has specifically denied that on 26th August, 2012 at about 10:00 a.m., the appellants had arrived at his stall in a black colour Indica car and appellant No. 1 purchased 2 kg. apples and gave him one currency note of Rs. 1,000/-. He has denied that he suspected genuineness of the note and therefore, saying that he would bring change from nearby stall owner, went away so as to inform said fact to other stall owners. He has also denied that while he was present at...

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