On 27th January 1999, The Odisha High Court passed a judgement in relation to Jogendra Nahak And Ors. vs State Of Orissa And Ors. (1999) 16 OCR 213 in which in Section 164 Cr.P.C. regarding whether or not the prosecution can seek to get is examination recorded. Justices U.C.Banerjee, K.T.Thomas and D.P.Mohapatro gave this judgement.
FACTS OF THE CASE:
Balaram Mohanty and his son were injured in an incident on 12-8-1997 in Janumi Village (Ganjam District, Orissa), and Balaram Mohanty died as a result of his injuries. On the basis of information provided by Bhagaban Mohanty, the deceased’s brother, an F.I.R. was filed with the Purusottampur Police Station.
Jagadish Murty and three others were charged in the F.I.R., and an investigation was launched. On completion of the investigation final report was laid by the police before the magistrate. The current four appellants claim that despite being interrogated by the Investigating Officer (IO) under Section 161 of the Code, their statements were not recorded in the Case Diary.
The four appellants petitioned the High Court for an order directing the IO to record their statements under Section 161 of the Code and a further order directing the magistrate to record their statements under Section 164 of the Code. According to its order dated 22-12-1997, the High Court allowed the Appellants to file a petition before the magistrate for the purpose of recording their statements, and the magistrate was directed to issue appropriate orders.
The magistrate appears to have recorded the Appellants’ statements in accordance with the aforementioned direction. As a result, Bhagaban Mohanty (the informant) petitioned the High Court to vacate the order dated 24-3-1998. The Division Bench that issued the aforementioned order heard both sides and issued the aforementioned order dismissing the appellants’ writ petition and ordering each of them to pay a cost of Rs.2,500/- for filing frivolous and vexatious petition.
The Division Bench determined that the appellants had miserably failed to establish any mala fide action by the IO in failing to properly investigate the case or screen any offender. Following this, the appellants filed a Special Leave Petition in the Apex Court.
All and sundry cannot approach the magistrate for recording of their statement u/s 164 and any witness, unsponsored by the IO/prosecution, cannot seek to get his examination recorded u/s 164 Cr.P.C.
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JUDGEMENT REVIEWED BY AMRIT BEHERA.