Criminal Appeal No. 1816 of 2009. Case: Sri Chand Vs State of Punjab. Supreme Court (India)

Case NumberCriminal Appeal No. 1816 of 2009
JudgesM. Yusuf Eqbal and Abhay Manohar Sapre, JJ.
IssueIndian Penal Code (IPC) - Sections 304B, 498A; Constitution of India - Article 136
Judgement DateSeptember 19, 2014
CourtSupreme Court (India)


M. Yusuf Eqbal, J.

  1. This appeal is directed against judgment and order dated 24.09.2008 passed by the High Court of Punjab and Haryana in Criminal Appeal No. 1044 of 1998, whereby the High Court allowed appeal of one of the four accused persons and dismissed appeal of the other three accused persons (viz. husband, father-in-law and mother-in-law of deceased lady). The Appellants-accused persons were convicted by the trial court on the charges Under Sections 304-B and 498-A of the Indian Penal Code (in short, 'Indian Penal Code') and directed each of the accused persons to undergo rigorous imprisonment for a period of ten years with fine of Rs. 2000/- each for the former offence and to undergo rigorous imprisonment for a period of one year for the latter offence with fine of Rs. 1000/- each with default clause. Prima facie, it will be appropriate to notice that on the appeal preferred by the aforesaid three accused persons Under Article 136 of the Constitution, this Court on 12.5.2009, while directing issuance of notice in the matter, confined the appeal to accused Nos. 2 & 3 and dismissed the appeal preferred by the husband-accused No. 1.

  2. The facts leading to the prosecution story are that on 18.2.1997, Tarsem Ram alias Tarsem Lal, resident of Village Durgapur, made a statement before the S.H.O. of Police Station Sadar, Nawanshahr that around 1 1/2 months back on 20.12.1996, his daughter Harpal Kaur alias Palo was married to one Jaswant Lal and though he gave dowry as per his financial capacity, her daughter's husband and in-laws were not satisfied with the adequacy thereof. Whenever his daughter would come to her parental house, she would inform the members of her parental family that the behavior of her husband towards her was not proper. Tarsem Lal impressed upon his son-in-law that the former was a poor person and what better gift could he have given to him in the marriage was his daughter itself. On 15.2.1997, when his son-in-law and daughter again came to Durgapur, his daughter Harpal Kaur told her parents that her father-in-law Sri Chand, mother-in-law Darshan Kaur, her husband's younger brother Nachhatter Lal and her husband Jaswant Lal are harassing her saying that they have not been given dowry according to their status. She further informed them that she would not go to her matrimonial house as she had an apprehension that she would be done to death over there. Tarsem Lal and his other family members advised Jaswant Lal to refrain from harassing Harpal Kuar and also explained their financial incapacity in meeting dowry demands. Thereafter, Harpal Kaur and Jaswant Lal left for the matrimonial house.

  3. On 18.2.1997, at about 10.00 A.M., two unknown persons came over to village...

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