In a recent case, a Division Bench of the Allahabad High Court acquitted two convicts accused of rape after concluding that both the witnesses (victim nad her father) of the case were unreliable.
Background of the Case:-
In the instant case, the incident took place on19.10.1994, and as per the prosecution, a minor girl was raped by three men after tying the girls family to a tree. In the FIR, the girl’s father alleged that when he was staying with his family in a brick kiln three people(out which he identified two), came to his hut, threatened him and his family with a country-made pistol, and then committed rape on his daughter.
Based on the complaint, the police arrested the three accused, and a trial ensued.
Before the Trial Court:-
Before the Trial Court, the victim’s testimony and her father, bolstered by medical evidence, proved fatal for the accused. They were convicted for offences u/s 342,376 (g) and also u/s 3(2)(v) of SC/ST Act, 1989 by the Trial Court.
Aggrieved by the same, the accused-appellant moved the High Court. However, during the appeal, one of the accused passed away.
Contentions raised before the High Court.
Learned Counsel for the appellants made the following arguments:-
- The victim is a major girl, and there is no evidence that rape was committed on her.
- As per the Doctor’s report, there were no injury marks on the victim’s body and that she was sexually active.
- Apart from the victim and her father, no other witnesses have come forward, even though the FIR states that the victim’s mother and siblings were present when the alleged crime took place.
- There was a delay in filing of the FIR, and There have been serious and material contradictions in the statement of the victim and her father.
On the other hand, learned Counsel for the State argued that the father victim has categorically stated that her daughter was raped by the accused, and the victim was also produced in the Court and examined. Learned Counsel further argued that the appeal lacks merit and should be dismissed.
Observations of the Bench
After perusing the medical evidence, the Court observed that even though the victim stated that she bled from her private part and there were scratch marks on her chest and body, there was no mention of such injuries in the medical report. The medical report also mentioned that the victim was habitual to sexual intercourse. The contradictions in the victim’s statement and the medical report made the Court believe that there were severe contradictions in the version narrated by the victim.
Hon’ble Court further observed that even though both the witnesses( victim and her father) have tried to narrate a version for implicating the accused-appellants but the same is a concocted version is termed as a “concocted uniformity” and is thus not safe to be relied upon. The said two witnesses fall in the category of unreliable witnesses.
The Court allowed the appeals and ordered that the appellants should be released from jail if the police did not want them in other cases.
Title:Hari Om Sharma And Another vs State of U.P.
Case No.:CRIMINAL APPEAL No. – 7686 of 2007
Date of Order;
Coram: Hon’ble Justice Ramesh Sinha and Hon’ble Justice Samit Gupta