Speed should not be the only criteria for deciding rashness and negligence on the part of the driver: High Court of Tripura

Mere driving of a vehicle at a high speed or slow speed does not lead to an inference that negligent or rash driving had caused the accident resulting in injuries to the complainant. In fact, speed is no criteria to establish the fact of rash and negligent driving of a vehicle. This auspicious judgment was passed by The High Court in Tripura in the case of Sri Biswajit Ghosh vs The State of Tripura [Crl. Rev. P No.21/2019] by Honourable Justice S. G. Chattopadhyay

The facts of the case are a face-to-face collision took place between two motorbikes according to the informant, the motorbike drove by Amar Deb collided with the motorbike driven by Biswanit Ghosh which was coming from the opposite direction. As a result of such a collision between the motorbikes, drivers of both the motorbikes got seriously injured. It was alleged by the informant that the accident occurred as a result of the careless driving of the said motorbikes.

The Learned Counsel for the petitioner submits that the case was registered against both the drivers of the motorbikes involved in the accident. Since one of the accused has died, a charge sheet has been filed against the other accused. if the evidence is to believe, the accused cannot be held guilty because, they have given no evidence in support of rash and negligent driving and the materials available on record do not justify the convict and sentence of the accused of rash and negligent driving.

Learned counsel on the other hand contends that prosecution evidence with regard to the charge of rash and negligent driving against the accused is so consistent that the concurrent findings of the courts below do not call for any interference in revision. Learned counsel, therefore, urges for dismissal of the instant petition.

The court relied on the Apex Court in the case of State of Karnataka Vs Satish, it was held that “Merely because the truck was being driven at a “high speed” does not bespeak of either “negligence” or “rashness” by itself. None of the witnesses examined by the prosecution could give any indication, even approximately, as to what they meant by “high speed”. “High speed” is a relative term. It was for the prosecution to bring on record material to establish as to what is meant by “high speed” in the facts and circumstances of the case.”

The court opined that “the prosecution has failed to establish the charges of rash and negligent driving against the petitioner by adducing sufficient, convincing and reliable evidence. Resultantly, the revision petition stands allowed and the accused is acquitted of the charges brought against him.”

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