08 December 2004
Supreme Court

Hari Badan Rai & Ors. Vs State of Bihar

Case number: Appeal (civil) 1419 of 2003



CASE NO.: Appeal (civil)  1419 of 2003

PETITIONER: Hari Badan Rai & Ors.

RESPONDENT: State of Bihar

DATE OF JUDGMENT: 08/12/2004



K.G. Balakrishnan, J.

       Seven accused persons were tried by the 6th Additional District and Sessions  Judge, Chapra in Bihar for the offences punishable under Section 302 and Section  201 read with Section 34 IPC.  All of them were found guilty and were sentenced to  undergo imprisonment for life for the offence under Section 302 read with Section 34  IPC and for the offence under Section 201 each of them was sentenced to undergo  imprisonment for three years.   

       All the seven accused jointly filed an appeal before the High Court.  During  the pendency of the appeal, A-1 Dublal Rai died and the High Court by the impugned  Judgment confirmed the conviction and sentence of all the appellants.  The  Judgment of the Division Bench is challenged before us.

       The prosecution case is that on 29.12.1986 at about 7.00 a.m. deceased  Ram Krishna Singh along with his relatives and co-villagers had gone to Dariyaoganj  Ghat to sprinkle milk on the ashes at the funeral place of his mother who had died on  the previous day.  After completing these rituals, deceased Ram Krishna Singh was  coming back with Uma Singh, Birendra Singh and Kapil Singh.  The first informant  and others remained there for few minutes to take a bath in the river.  When Ram  Krishna Singh and others reached in front of the house of Sant Lal Rai, A-1 Dublal  Rai (since dead) and other accused persons attacked Ram Krishna Singh with  various weapons.  A-1 Dublal Rai exhorted other accused persons to kill Ram  Krishna Singh.  A-2 Hari Badan Rai and A-3 Parma Rai gave bhala blows on the  right chest and left abdomen of deceased Ram Krishna Singh.  Ram Krishna Singh  fell in the ditch, and accused persons continued to cause various injuries on him.   The persons who were with deceased Ram Krishna Singh were threatened by the  accused and they could not save Ram Krishna Singh.  The accused then brought a  bamboo raft and the dead body of Ram Krishna Singh was tied over the bamboo  raft.  Some of the villagers came there but the assailants chased them away and the  body of Ram Krishna Singh was taken to the river.  They took him on a boat and  rowed the boat towards south east and threw the body of Ram Krishna Singh in the  river.  The first informant, the son of deceased Ram Krishna Singh went to the police  station and the case was registered on the same day.  On 4-1-1987, during the  course of the investigation, the decomposed head and some bones were recovered  from the river at village Bhabangawan and after investigation, a final report was filed.

       The prosecution examined 17 witnesses.  PW 5, 7 and 8 are eye-witnesses.   To prove that the skull and other bones recovered by the police were that of  deceased Ram Krishna Singh, PW 3 Nitya Nand, PW 4 Raj Ballabh Singh, PW 6  Raghubansh Singh, PW 7 Kapil Singh and PW 8 Ajay Kumar Singh were examined.   PW 6 Raghubansh Singh deposed that after the murder, he carried out a search for  the dead body and on 4.1.1987, he came to know that the dead body was lying in  the river at Bhabangawa.  He went there at 10.00 AM and met the Mukhiya of the  village and others.  He also deposed that the head portion of the dead body was  found tied in a cloth and it was in his presence that the cloth bundle was opened and



he found that the head was that of Ram Krishna Singh.  He also deposed that it was  in a highly decomposed state and that after 10-15 minutes, the flesh started  disintegrating.  PW 11, the Investigation Officer also supported the evidence of PW  6.  The dead body was identified by PW 3 Nitya Nand, PW 4 Raj Ballabh Singh, PW  7 Kapil Singh and PW 8 Ajay Kumar Singh and inquest of the dead body was held at  the Sadar Hospital, Chapra.  These witnesses clearly deposed that they could  identify the head portion as that of Ram Krishna Singh.

       PW 10 Dr. B.N. Mishra, conducted the post-mortem examination.  It is  important to note that certain marks of injuries were found on the remnants of the  dead body.  Only some of the bones could be recovered and were available for post- mortem examination and PW 15 Dr. N.K. Jha, Professor & Head of the Department  of Anatomy gave an opinion that the bones were of a male aged above 45 years.   There is clear and convincing evidence of PW 5, PW 7 Kapil Singh and PW 8 Ajay  Kumar Singh to prove the motive for the crime. The Trial Court as well as the High  Court placed reliance on evidence of these witnesses and as regards the motive,  PW 8 Ajay Kumar Singh deposed that one Lok Nath Rai, the father of A-2 Hari  Badan Rai and A-5 Gyan Chand Rai was caught and produced before Ram Krishna  Singh alleging that he had committed theft of cattle and deceased Ram Krishna  Singh said that Lok Nath Rai be produced before the police, but on the way to the  police station, he died.  The appellants believed that he must have been done to  death at the instance of Ram Krishna Singh.  The evidence of PW 5, PW 7 and PW  8 have been critically examined and analysed by the High Court.  We do not find any  flaw in the appreciation of the evidence of these witnesses.  The investigation was  also conducted properly and the learned Counsel for the appellant could not point  out any infirmity.  We do not find any reason to disagree with the finding of the  Division Bench of the High Court.

       The appeal is accordingly dismissed.