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Any mere irregularity cannot be the reason of quashing of the any Judgement: High court of Delhi.

Any mere irregularity cannot be the reason of quashing of the any Judgement: High court of Delhi.

Section 392 of the IPC deals with punishment for robbery , Whoever commits robbery shall be punished with rigorous imprisonment for a term which may extend to ten years, and shall also be liable to fine; and, if the robbery be committed on the highway between sunset and sunrise, the imprisonment may be extended to fourteen years. But the term of period comes into conflict sometimes such as issue was dealt in the case of GULAM JILANI @ KALLU AND OTHERS V. GOVT. OF NCT OF DELHI [CRL. A. 619/2017 AND CRL.M.A. 6306/2020, the single judge bench of JUSTICE BIBHU BAKHRU, shed light on the procedure of punishment in such cases.

In the present case the appellants in this matter were previously convicted by the Trial Court for committing an offence punishable under Section 392/34 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860. They were sentenced to rigorous imprisonment for a period of 7 years along with Rs.3,000/- fine each ,the default of which would attract an additional 3 months of simple imprisonment. The appellants were originally charged under Section 392/411/34 of the IPC. The Trial Court acquitted them under all charges except Section 392, IPC,. Further, it was observed that the complainant, who claimed to be the eyewitness, had various inconsistencies in his statements.

In the view of the patchy evidence relating to the goods recovered from the accused, the Trial Court had acquitted the appellants under Section 411 of the IPC, stating that “the prosecution had failed to establish beyond any reasonable doubt that the articles recovered from the possession of the accused were the same articles that were robbed.”

The present appeal was filed in order to impugn the decision of the Trial Court. While the appellants did not contest about whether the robbery itself had been committed or not, they argued that the prosecution had failed to prove the involvement of the appellants in the commission of the said offence, as their testimonies were inconsistent. Further, the appellants, relying on STATE (GNCT OF DELHI) V. SANDEEP [CRL L.P. 620/2019], argued that these testimonies are also unreliable as the accused were shown to the witnesses in the police station, prior to the TIP proceedings.

The HC, though agreeing with this argument, found that since no such contention was advanced before the Trial Court, it was clearly an afterthought. Adding to this, the court also held that “even if the contention that the procedure under Section 267 of the CrPC ought not to have been invoked to produce the appellants before the learned MM, The appellants have failed to establish that they were unfairly prejudiced by the same. In terms of Section 465 of the CrPC, the impugned judgment convicting the appellants cannot be called into question on account of any irregularity in procedure unless it is established that the same resulted in the failure of justice. However, the HC held that the appellants deserved leniency since they were very young at the commission of the offence and now had families to support, and accordingly reduced the punishment.

Click here to read the Judgement

Judgement reviewed by Pratikshya Pattnaik

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