Police cops acquitted after 22 years facing investigation and trial in corruption case

Jammu Tawi, December 12
In a criminal appeal against the judgment of Special Judge Anticorruption Jammu whereby Special Judge Anticorruption convicted two police cop namely Abdul Rashid and RameshKumar in the year 2003 and awarded two years imprisonment, Justice Tashi Rabstan of J&K High Court Jammu Wing after hearing Adv AP Singh appearing for the appellant whereas Deputy AG Farz Iqbal appearing for the state, set-aside the conviction and sentence awarded by the Trial court and acquitted them from the charges after 22 years investigation and trial.
Case abridged by prosecution is that appellants, while posted at Police Post Thatri, were deputed for patrolling duty on 23rd March 1994, with a complaint filed by one Paryog Singh son of Faquir Singh resident of Gagrani, Bhela, for enquiry against Parven Singh son of Dharam Singh, i.e. complainant and his mother Raj Dhai. Appellants took Parven Singh in custody. Appellants are alleged to have harassed Parven Singh to implicate him and arrest on the background of complaint and in the event he pays bribe of Rs.1000/- he would go scot free. The matter is stated to have been settled for Rs.500/-. The said amount, according to complainant was paid to appellants. The appellants are alleged to have, by abuse of their official position, received bribe of Rs.500/- from complainant which was followed by culmination of complaint into compromise and on the complaint of SSP Doda, VOJ register a case in the year 1994.
Justice Tashi while deciding one of the oldest corruption case, after hearing Adv AP Singh, observed that criminal trial is not a fairy tale in which one is free to give flight to one’s imagination and fantasy. Crime is an event in real life and is product of an interplay between different human emotions. In arriving at a conclusion about the guilt of accused, charged with commission of a crime, the court has to judge the evidence by the yardstick of probabilities, its intrinsic worth and the animus of witnesses. Every case, in the final analysis, would have to depend upon its own facts. The court must bear in mind that “human nature is too willing, when faced with brutal crimes, to spin stories out of strong suspicions.” Though an offence may be gruesome and revolt the human conscience, an accused can be convicted only on legal evidence and not on surmises and conjectures. The law does not permit the court to punish accused on the basis of a moral conviction or suspicion alone. “The burden of proof in a criminal trial never shifts and it is always the burden of prosecution to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt on the basis of acceptable evidence.” In fact, it is a settled principle of Criminal Jurisprudence that the more serious the offence, the stricter the degree of proof required, since a higher degree of assurance is required to convict the accused. The fact that the offence was committed in a very cruel and revolting manner may in itself be a reason for scrutinizing the evidence more closely, lest the shocking nature of the crime induce an instinctive reaction against dispassionate judicial scrutiny of the facts and law. With these observations court acquitted accused from the charges leveled against him. JNF

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