Crl. M. Appl. No. 09 of 2015 in Crl. A. No. 04 of 2015. Case: Suraj Rai Vs State of Sikkim. Sikkim High Court

Case NumberCrl. M. Appl. No. 09 of 2015 in Crl. A. No. 04 of 2015
CounselFor Appellant: N. Rai, Senior Advocate (Senior Legal Aid Counsel) and Tamanna Chhetri, Advocate (Legal Aid Counsel) and For Respondents: J.B. Pradhan, Public Prosecutor, S.K. Chettri and Pollin Rai, Assistant Public Prosecutors
JudgesSunil Kumar Sinha, C.J. and Meenakshi Madan Rai, J.
IssueConstitution of India - Article 21; Indian Penal Code 1860, (IPC) - Sections 201, 302; Negotiable Instruments Act, 1881 - Section 138
Judgement DateApril 13, 2016
CourtSikkim High Court


Meenakshi Madan Rai, J.

  1. The instant Application has been filed by the Appellant seeking condonation of delay for a period of 14 years and 7 months in filing the Appeal against the Judgment and Order of Sentence of the Learned Court of Sessions (S & W) Sikkim at Namchi, dated 11-08-2000 in Criminal Case No. 9 of 1996.

  2. For clarity, the sequence of events before this Court is narrated hereunder;

    "On hearing the Senior Counsel for the Appellant, it emerged that he had been engaged through the Sikkim State Legal Services Authority on 27-11-2014 and had filed the Appeal on 05-03-2015 whereas the impugned Judgment and Order on Sentence was dated 11-08-2000. No records being available before this Court to indicate what transpired between 11-08-2000 till November, 2013, i.e., the date of re-arrest of the Appellant, the Senior Counsel sought sometime to clarify. This was done on 26-05-2015 and taken on record wherein the main ground urged for seeking condonation of delay was that a copy of the impugned Judgment and Order were not supplied to the Appellant. As no endorsement appeared either in the original Judgment or in the relevant Order Sheet of the Learned Trial Court on this aspect, a Report was called for from the concerned Court seeking clarification. A Report was submitted by the Learned Sessions Judge on 05-08-2015 based on the records before him, explaining that a certified copy of the Judgment was made over to the Counsel of the Accused/Appellant Shri Bandhan Rai on 21-08-2000 pursuant to his application dated 18-08-2000."

  3. On the prayer of the Learned Senior Counsel to file some documents in support of his application seeking condonation, this was allowed and on 05-03-2016 he filed an application duly supported by an affidavit sworn by Advocate Shri Bandhan Rai to the effect that after he submitted an application on 18-08-2000 for supply of certified copy of the impugned Judgment and it was made over him on 21-08-2000. Thereafter, he remained out of touch with the Appellant who was at the State Jail at Gangtok, as such, he could not send the certified copy of the Judgment to him.

  4. While placing his verbal submissions, Learned Senior Counsel contended that apart from non-receipt of the impugned Judgment and Order by the Appellant, the delay also occurred as the Sikkim State Legal Services Authority appointed him on 27-11-2014 and copy of the case records for preparing the Appeal was made over to him on 02-01-2015 after which he took some time to prepare the matter. That the Appellant once committed to Jail, was told by...

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