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Dowry death: SC renders complete justice to soul of victim

Written by: Staff

New Delhi, Apr 14: Rendering complete justice to the soul of a married woman who was burnt alive on Sept.14, 2001 by her husband and in-laws, the Supreme Court has ordered the father-in-law Lok Ram of the deceased Saroj to face trial for setting her afire after sprinkling kerosene oil on the victim.

A bench comprising Mr. Justice Arijit Pasayat and Mr. Justice S.H.

Kapadia vide judgment dated April 10 dismissed the appeal of Lok Ram against the Rajasthan High Court reversing the trial court order rejecting application of the complainant Nihal Singh for summoning the appellant as an accused in the case.

Husband of the deceased, Ishwar Singh, his brother Bhim Singh and their mother were convicted for an offence under section 304(B) IPC ( dowry death) by the trial court on Dec. 4,2002 and were sentenced to seven years' Rigorous Imprisonment in the same case.

Lok Ram was not charge-sheeted by the police earlier. Nihal Singh, father of deceased Saroj filed an application under section 319 Cr.P.C. for summoning the appellant as an accused in the case. The application was rejected by the trial court but in revision the high court reversed the trial court order and directed Lok Ram to be put to trial.

Lok Ram has taken the stand that he was on duty in a school at the time of occurence.

The apex court while upholding the high court judgment said that the trial court order did not appear to be relevant and therefore the high court had rightly interfered in the matter.The impugned judgment did not suffer from an infirmity.The apex court, however, made it clear that the court did not express any opinion on the merits of the case and requested the trial court to complete the trial as early as possible since the matter was pending long.The trial court had rejected the application on the ground that Nihal Singh was an interested witness.

The Supreme Court also held that section 319 can be attracted only on the basis of evidence adduced before a court and not on the basis of charge-sheet or the case diary.


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