On Wednesday, the Supreme Court delivered its verdict in a Criminal Appeal relating to 498-A IPC.
The Supreme Court has allowed the Criminal Appeal and has set aside the conviction of the brother of the Husband who was convicted under 498-A IPC,
The Deceased Asha Kumari married Gora Shah (Accused No.1). As per the prosecution story, a demand of Rs. 10,000 was made at the time of vidai ceremony. The demand of dowry of Rs. 10,000 continued and the deceased was harassed for the same.
On 20.02.1998, the deceased went for a morning walk along with her husband (Accused No.1), but only Accused No,1 came back home. When the deceased did not return, the father of the deceased started searching her and ultimately she was found dead, near a canal with strangulation marks on her neck.
An FIR was registered against the Husband, Appellant (Elder Brother of Husband) and Younger Brother of Husband, under Section 498-A, 304-B read with 34 IPC.
Conviction by Trial Court and Confirmation by High Court
The Trial Court convicted all three accused, however the Appellant and younger brother were acquitted for charges under Section 304-B read with S, 34 IPC.
Aggrieved by the Conviction, an Appeal was filed before the High Court, which was dismissed and conviction was confirmed by the High Court.
Appeal in Supreme Court
Aggrieved by the Judgment of Trial Court and High Court, the Appellant filed a Criminal Appeal in Supreme Court.
The Counsel for the Appellant pleaded that none of the Independent Witnesses have supported the Prosecution Story. It was contended that the prosecution story comprises vague allegations and unsubstantiated evidence.
The entire family has been roped in, without there being any role.
Persistent Demand of Dowry Should Be Proved For Conviction Under S. 498-A IPC
A bench of Hon’ble Justice N.V. Ramana and Hon’ble Justice Surya Kant held that from the perusal of the testimonies, it is apparent that the Appellant has not been named by the Witnesses and there is no independent evidence to support the conviction of Appellant.
The Court found that apart from vague allegations, no specific instance of hostile attitude or persistent demand of dowry has been proved by the witnesses.
As such the Supreme Court allowed the Criminal Appeal and set aside the conviction and acquitted the Appellant of the charges levelled against him.
Title: Nimay Shah vs Stare of Jharkhand
Case No.: Criminal Appeal No 211 of 2011
Date of Order: 02.12.2020
Coram: Hon’ble Justice N.V. Ramana and Hon’ble Justice Surya Kant