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A fact is said not to be proved when it is neither proved nor disproved: Bombay High Court

A fact is said not to be proved when it is neither proved nor disproved, this was upheld in the recent case of Sheetal Anil Berlekar v. Babasaheb Gangaram Daingade [CRIMINAL APPEAL NO. 423 OF 2000], listed in the Bombay High Court, Criminal Appellate Jurisdiction. The judgement was pronounced on February 9h 2022, and the said proceedings were presided by a coram comprising of Justice SMT. Sadhana S. Jadhav & Justice Prithviraj K. Chavan.

The facts, as presented before the court of law, are as follows. The accused no.1 had started residing with the accused no.2. He was accompanied by his parents and sister Megha. It was alleged that Megha used to visit the telephone booth of the complainant for making telephone calls. The complainant and his wife had overheard the said conversation between Sachin and Megha on their intercom. Sachin was present in the STD booth when he received a call from the accused no.1 calling Sachin near a Hotel. The said invitation by accused no.1 was followed by a threat that Sachin would face dire consequences upon failure to come near the Hotel.

It is alleged in the First Information Report lodged by the complainant that both the accused came near the STD booth and upon being exhorted by accused no.2, accused no.1 had assaulted Sachin with a dagger on his chest and head. The injured was taken to the hospital and was declared dead on arrival.

While the case being heard, many landmark judgments of Bhimapa Chandappa Hosamani and Ors. Vs. State of Karnataka [(2006) 11 SCC 323], Dudh Nath Pandey vs. The State of U.P. [1981 (2) SCC 166], Munshi Prasad and Ors. vs. State of Bihar [2002 (1) SCC 351] were quoted in order to put emphasize on the pertinent case.

Court, after hearing both the sides, analysing facts, and considering a perusal of all evidences, held that:

“The evidence would fall into three categories “PROVED”, “DISPROVED” and “NOT PROVED”. A fact is said to be disproved when, after considering the matters before it, the Court either believes that it does not exist, or considers its non-existence so probable that a prudent man ought, under the circumstances of the particular case, to act upon the supposition that it does not exist and fact is said to be ‘proved’ when, after considering the matter before it, the Court either believes it to exist, or considers its existence so probable that a prudent man ought, under the circumstances of the particular case, to act upon the supposition that it exists. A fact is said not to be proved when it is neither proved nor disproved.” In addition to the above, the court related the case with the principle and held that “the Accused/appellants stand acquitted of all the charges levelled against them.”

Judgment reviewed by Pranav Sharma

 

Click here for the Judgment

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