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For conviction, weapon recovery is not essential: Delhi High Court

The issue was in this case was whether a man found guilty of murder can be convicted when the weapon of crime was not recovered which was dealt by a bench of Delhi High Court  consisting of Justice Manoj Kumar Ohri in the matters between Saleem Khan v State (GNCTD) CRL. A. 491/2020 decided on 5.1.2022.

The facts of this case are the accused is booked under section 307,324 and 506 of IPC for attempting to murder and causing grievous hurt to Yunus and his brother, for which he was sentenced to 6 years rigorous imprisonment with fine.According to Police, the injuries were caused by a knife which was not recovered.The accused appealed at the high court challenging the order of conviction.

The appellant contended that the Investigating Officer did not record the statements of any public witnesses. The fact that the statements of the complainant and his brother contradicted materially in terms of the time when the incident occurred was immaterial as the appellant was already known to both the injured and them.The statements were consistent with all other aspects of the case. The complainant’s bloody clothes were not confiscated and the PCR Form was not presented but was rejected by the Supreme Court. Judging by the minutes of the incident, the claim has no value and was rejected and the Investigative Officer had not recorded the testimony of any public witnesses.

The respondent contended that the statements of both Yunus and Sahil are consistent and reliable, as they both declared that they had been attacked by the appellant  whom they already knew.

The Delhi High Court cited case of Loyalty Kotwar and Other v. Jharkhand State as observed and recognized in the judgments of this Court, no one can enter the mind of the accused and his intention must be high and the part of the body chosen for the attack from the weapon used and the nature of the injury caused. Considering the incident within the framework of the above-mentioned principles, it can be said that the use of a deadly weapon a knife blow to the stomach and the nature of injuries close to the chest are of vital importance. Given the nature of the corpses and wounds, it is justifiably accepted that the appellants committed the crime under Article 307.In the present case, the injuries sustained a knife and to the neck.The nature of the corresponding injury was considered severe.

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Judgement reviewed by Bhaswati Goldar

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