NEW DELHI :- JUDGEMENT OVERVIEW

COURT :  Supreme Court of India (Full Bench (FB)- Three Judge)

JUDGEMENT NAME : PARVATI DEVI VERSUS THE STATE OF BIHAR NOW STATE OF JHARKHAND & ORS. Appeal (Crl.), 574 of 2012

JUDGEMENT DATE :  Dec 17, 2021

RELATED SECTIONS : INDIAN PENAL CODE, 1860

Section 201 – Causing disappearance of evidence of offence, or giving false information to screen offender

Section 304 B – Dowry death

 

IMPORTANT PARAGRAPH : 

HIMA KOHLI, J.

  1. Ram Sahay Mahto, appellant in Criminal Appeal No.

575/2012 (hereinafter referred to as A-1) and his mother Parvati

Devi, appellant in Criminal Appeal No. 574/2012 (hereinafter

referred to as A-3) are aggrieved by the common judgment

dated 1st May, 2007 passed by the High Court of Jharkhand

upholding the judgment of conviction dated 20th September,

1999 under Sections 304B and 201 read with Section 34 IPC

passed by the 5th Additional Sessions Judge, Giridih, sentencing

them and Nema Mahto (father of A-1 and husband of A-3) to

undergo rigorous imprisonment for a period of ten years and

three years respectively on each count with both the sentences

running concurrently. For the record, Nema Mahto had also

preferred an appeal registered as SLP (Crl.) No. 6955 of 2009

which abated on his expiring during its pendency.

  1. The case of the prosecution as culled out from the

impugned judgment is that the informant, Bodhi Mahto (PW–3)

had got his daughter, Fulwa Devi, married to Ram Sahay Mahto

(A-1) in the year 1997 and within a few months of the marriage,

A-1, his father Nema Mahto (since deceased) and mother,

Parvati Devi (A-3) started to harass Fulwa Devi raising a

demand for a sum of Rs. 20,000/- in cash and a Rajdoot Motor

cycle. On expressing the inability of her parents to satisfy their

demands, she was brutally assaulted and threatened that A-1

would be married off to another girl. Thereafter, on information

being received that his daughter had gone missing from her

matrimonial home, P.W.3 rushed to her home but finding her

traceless, he approached Birni Police Station and lodged a

missing complaint. A case was registered by the local police on

th August, 1997 against A-1, A-2 and A-3 being Case No. 71 of

1997, for the offences under Sections 304/201/34 IPC. On

completion of the investigation, a charge-sheet was filed

against all the three accused for the aforesaid offences along

with Sections 3 and 4 of the Dowry Prohibition Act.

  1. Five days after the FIR was lodged by PW-3 on 13th August,

1997, a skeleton was recovered from the banks of river

Barakar, at a distance of about one kilometer short of Village

Sirmadih which was assumed to be that of Fulwa Devi. Charges

were framed against the three accused under Sections

304B/34, 201/34 IPC. To bring home the guilt of the accused,

the prosecution examined seven witnesses, whereas the

accused examined six witnesses. The material witnesses

examined by the prosecution included Dr. B.P. Singh (PW-1), the

doctor who had conducted the post-mortem examination of the

dead body, Sahdeo Mahto (PW-2), brother–in–law of the

deceased, Bodhi Mahto (PW-3), father of the deceased as well

as the informant, Jogeshwar Mahto (PW-4), brother of the

deceased, Tiki Devi (PW-5), wife of PW–4 (sister-in-law/Bhabhi of

the deceased) and Suresh Prasad Singh (PW-6), the

Investigating Officer.

  1. After a critical analysis of the deposition of the aforesaid

witnesses, the High Court summarized their testimony. Dr.

Bhupendra Prasad Singh (PW–1) deposed that he had

conducted the autopsy of the dead body produced before him

as that of Fulwa Devi and found the body to be highly

decomposed. The left leg, left forearm and left hand were

absent. Similarly, the right upper limb and right lower limb

below the knee joint were absent. No evidence of any ante-

mortem injury was found. The time that had elapsed till the

post-mortem examination was conducted, was assessed as one

week.

DOWNLOAD FULL JUDGEMENT :- CLICK HERE 

PARVATI DEVI

By admin