Criminal Appeal No. 864 of 2009. Case: Vitthal Tukaram Kadam and Ors. Vs The State of Maharashtra. High Court of Bombay (India)

Case NumberCriminal Appeal No. 864 of 2009
CounselFor Appellant: Sharad Bhosale i/by Dilip Bodake, Advs. and For Respondents: A.S. Pai, A.P.P.
JudgesV. K. Tahilramani, Actg. C.J. and Dr. Shalini Phansalkar Joshi, J.
IssueIndian Penal Code 1860, (IPC) - Sections 300, 302, 304, 323, 34
Judgement DateFebruary 12, 2016
CourtHigh Court of Bombay (India)


Dr. Shalini Phansalkar Joshi, J.

  1. The Appellants, who stand convicted by the Judgment and Order dated 31st December 2008 in Sessions Case No. 7 of 2008 of Additional Sessions Judge, Karad, for the offence punishable under Section 302 r/w. 34 of IPC and sentenced to suffer life imprisonment and fine of Rs. 1,000/- each, in default to suffer R.I. for one month and for the offence punishable under Section 323 r/w. 34 of IPC and sentenced to suffer S.I. for one month, by this Appeal challenge their conviction and sentence.

  2. Brief facts of the Appeal can be stated as follows:-

    Appellant No. 2 is the son of Appellant No. 1. Deceased Lalasaheb was the brother of Appellant No. 1. They had two other brothers by name Dattatraya and PW-4 Kundalik. Deceased Lalasaheb was given in adoption to one Yeshoda Kadam and his name was entered into the property of Yeshoda's husband Ramchandra Kadam. Appellant No. 1 wanted to sell the ancestral property - the agricultural land. His brothers Dattatraya and Lalasaheb told him not to sell the land. Dattatraya even offered to purchase the said land from Appellant No. 1 and requested him not to sell it to any other person. Appellant No. 1 was not ready for the same. On that count, the relations between Appellant Nos. 1 and 2 on one hand and his brothers Dattatraya and deceased Lalasaheb, on the other hand, were strained.

  3. The incident that took place on 18th April, 2007 was the outcome of these strained relations. On that day, while deceased Lalasaheb was sitting on the terrace of the house, at about 7:30 pm, Appellant No. 1 came in front of his house and started giving abuses in indecent language as to how Lalasaheb can oppose him in respect of selling of the agricultural land. Lalasaheb, therefore, came down from the terrace. The fighting ensued between Appellant No. 1 and Lalasaheb. Meanwhile, Appellant No. 2 Somnath also came there with wooden stump. Both the Appellants then gave fist blows and kicks to Lalasaheb. Appellant No. 2 also gave the blows of wooden stump. By that time, PW-3 Kantabai, Dattraya's wife, came there and snatched wooden stump from the hands of Appellant No. 2 Somnath. PW-2 Laxmi, wife of Lalasaheb, also tried to intervene in the fight, but she could not succeed. Appellant No. 1-Vitthal then took out knife and inflicted several blows of knife on the stomach, chest and head of Lalasaheb. As a result, Lalasaheb fell down. PW-4 Kundalik, who had also reached there, then took Lalasaheb to Krishna Charitable Hospital. There Doctor declared Lalasaheb to be dead before admission. In the hospital itself, the complaint of PW-2 Laxmi came to be recorded vide Exhibit-16.

  4. On her complaint, C.R. No. 72 of 2007 came to be registered at Karad Taluka Police Station. PW-10 API Sambhaji Patil took over investigation of the case and sent dead body of Lalasaheb for postmortem examination, after conducting Inquest Panchanama (Exhibit-5). He took the search of the Appellants and arrested them on the same day. Both the Appellants were also referred for medical examination in view of the presence of some injuries on their person. Their blood stained clothes were also seized. The Spot Panchanama was made on the same night and from the spot, the blood stained knife was seized under Panchanama (Exhibit-13). During the course of investigation, Appellant No. 2-Somnath gave a disclosure statement vide Memorandum Panchanama (Exhibit-33). Thereafter he guided Police and Panchas to his house and produced the blood stained shirts and wooden stump. They were seized under Panchanama (Exhibit-34). All the seized muddemal articles were sent to Chemical Analyzer on 4th May, 2007. Further to completion of investigation, Charge-Sheet came to be filed in the Court against the Appellants.

  5. On committal of the case to the Sessions Court, the Trial Court framed charge against the Appellants vide Exhibit-2. The Appellants pleaded not guilty and claimed trial, raising the defence of denial and false implication on account of the enmity and strained relations.

  6. In support of its case, prosecution examined in all 11 witnesses and on appreciation of their evidence, the Trial Court was pleased to hold the guilt of both the Appellants to be proved beyond reasonable doubt and convicted and sentenced them as aforesaid.

  7. This Judgment of the Trial Court is challenged in this Appeal by learned counsel for the Appellants, whereas, supported by learned A.P.P. for Respondent-State. In our considered opinion, before adverting to the rival submissions advanced by them, it would be useful to refer to the evidence on record.

  8. To prove homicidal death of deceased Lalasaheb, prosecution has examined PW-6 Dr. Dhondiram Jadhav, who was attached to Rural Hospital, Karad and has conducted postmortem examination after the dead body of Lalasaheb was brought from Krishna Hospital, Karad. On examination, he found following external injuries:-

    (1) Incised wound, vertically placed with dried blood at margins, of size of 10 cm x 2 cm x bone deep, situated on left temporal region, just lateral to the outer canthus of left eye. Its mid portion situated. It was caused by sharp cutting weapon and it was antemortem injury.

    (2) Punctured incised wound, elliptical in shape with both angles acutely cut vertically placed. No abrasion or bruise at wound...

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