10 Important Latest Case Laws under CrPC and IPC
The article '10 Important Latest Case Laws under CrPC and IPC' presents a compilation of 10 recent criminal case laws.
The article '10 Latest Case Laws under CrPC and IPC' presents a compilation of 10 recent case laws that serve as significant legal precedents in the realm of criminal law, contributing to the understanding and development of the CrPC and IPC.
The cases discussed cover a wide range of legal issues and shed light on important judicial interpretations and developments in the field of criminal law. The cases highlight significant aspects of procedural requirements, evidentiary standards, and substantive offences under the CrPC and IPC.
1. Joseph Thomas v. State of Kerala
Court: Kerala High Court
Citation: Crl. M.C.No.1638 of 2023
Facts: The Petitioner surrendered to the Judicial First Class Magistrate Court in February 2023. The petitioner submitted a bail application along with a surrender memo. The Magistrate stated that the petitioner was not allowed to be in the court's custody and rejected the bail application. The petitioner was verbally ordered by the magistrate to appear before the relevant SHO. Aggrieved by the order the petitioner approached the High Court.
Court’s Observation: According to Sections 436 and 437 of the Criminal Procedure Code anyone who has been charged with the offence is at liberty to appear before the concerned magistrate or court. When the accused surrenders himself, the concerned magistrate or Court shall either release him on bail or remand him to custody.
The term Custody was discussed in this case. Custody means a person accused of committing a crime or suspected of doing so had been surrendered by the law. In various Supreme Court precedents, the court opined that when the accused has to be present in the court to file a bail petition under section 437, his presence before the concerned magistrate is considered to be surrendered.
Justice Babu was of the view that
“When the Code permits a person accused of an offence to surrender before the Court having jurisdiction over the subject matter, it cannot refuse permission. When an accused appears before the Court and applies for surrender, his prayer shall be accepted.”
Judgment: High Court of Kerala held that the Magistrate's approach was seen to be improper. The court directed the petitioner to appear before the magistrate within one week and directed the magistrate to admit the plea for surrender and bail application as per law.
2. G. Vishakan v. State of Kerala & Ors.
Court: High Court of Kerala
Citation: WP(C) NO. 22328 of 2023
Facts: The Petitioner, a senior journalist of "Mangalam Daily," G. Visakhan, said that the police officers conducted a search on his home and questioned him about Shajan Skaria, editor and publisher of the YouTube channel Marunadan Malayali. After that, his cell phone was also taken. As a journalist, the petitioner claimed that his mobile phone was the source of his livelihood.
The Petitioner claimed that the respondents in this instance followed the provision under Section 156 CrPC (Police Officer's Powers to Investigate Cognizable Cases) and ignored Section 41 A CrPC (Notice of Appearance before the Police Officer).
The Petitioner also claimed that he was not involved in Skaria’s crimes and that, as of now, investigating authorities have no proof linking him to the alleged crime, with these grounds that the Petitioner approached the Court seeking the issuance of a direction not to harass him.
Court’s Observation: According to Justice P.V. Kunhikrishnan, there are processes to be followed if a journalist's cell phone needs to be seized in connection with a criminal prosecution.
Judgment: The Kerala High Court strongly criticized the State police for unlawfully confiscating a journalist's mobile phone without adhering to proper protocols. High Court directed the SHO to file a statement in the matter of the circumstances under which the mobile phone of the petitioner was seized.
3. Loyola Selva Kumar v. Sharon Nisha
Court: High Court of Tamil Nadu
Citation: Crl.R.C.(MD)No.417 of 2021 And Crl.M.P.(MD)No.4388 of 2021
Facts: The Woman had filed the maintenance petition contending that her husband had failed to maintain her and their minor daughter.
The husband contended that there was no marriage between the said woman and the child does not belong to him. He had contented that he had married a different woman and had a child in 2011. Further, the divorce petition was filed and the same was dismissed after the trial and the appeal is still pending for the first marriage. He concluded that there was no marriage between him and the woman and there was no relationship, he was not liable to pay maintenance.
Court’s observation: The court determined from the given records that the man's prior marriage was still valid. The court stated that even if the second 'wife' had presented the marriage invitation, wedding photo, birth certificate of the child, and other documents to support the supposed marriage, the second marriage could not be regarded as genuine because the first marriage was still in existence.
Considering the cheating of the husband and earning a good Salary, the court observed that even if there was a first marriage, the second wife and any children from the second marriage would be entitled to maintenance under Section 125 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.
Judgment: The monthly maintenance amount for each respondent being set at Rs. 10,000 is extremely acceptable and cannot be deemed to be exorbitant. Therefore, the Court determined that the revision lacked merit and should be rejected.
4. Pratibha Manchanda v. State of Haryana
Court: Supreme Court
Citation: Arising out of Special Leave Petition (Crl.) No.8146 2023
Facts: The Petitioner was aggrieved by the decision of the Punjab and Haryana High Court. The High Court had granted anticipatory bail to the Respondent/ accused against an FIR for the offence of forging the documents for the transfer of ownership of land worth crores of rupees.
Court's observation: Forging documents to transfer title of land valued at crores of rupees constitutes a serious crime. The seriousness of the offence determines where there is a need for custodial interrogation. The Court considered the case of Sushila Aggarwal vs. State (NCT of Delhi), where it was held that certain factors and parameters were to be considered while dealing with anticipatory bail.
The Anticipatory Bail remedy is intended to protect individual rights. It protects innocent people from harassment and is a vital instrument in preventing the abuse of the power of arrest. However, it's found challenging the strike a balance between individual rights and the interest of Justice. Hence the court has to balance the interests in the case and ensure a fair outcome.
Judgment: The Supreme Court allowed the appeal and set aside the order of the High Court. This court directed the Commissioner of Police, Gurugram to constitute a Special Investigation Team (SIT) to investigate the matter and conclude it within two months of the date of this order.
5. Gagan Baba v. Samit Mandal
Court: Supreme Court of India
Citation: Criminal Appeal No. 463 of 2022
Facts of the case: In order to prevent financial institutions/lenders from pursuing recovery actions for their enforceable obligations and/or to compel them to settle their debts, offenders bring false criminal procedures against these parties, as well as their officials, representatives, and managers. It was argued that FIRs are filed in an effort to undermine SARFAESI's legal framework and avoid paying off debts that are legitimately owed.
Court’s observation: The court recalled the case of Priyanka Srivastava v. State of U.P. wherein this Court held that using criminal law instead of legislative remedies to bring down financial organisations has the inherent potential to have an impact on the core of the country's economic health. It is deeply concerning that this practice of portraying a merely civil finances dispute as a criminal matter continues.
Judgment: The Petitioners were given two weeks to file a challenge against all four FIRs and the ECIR with their respective jurisdictional High Courts.
6. Abdul Ansar v. State of Kerala
Court: The Supreme Court of India
Citation: SLP (Criminal) No. 2161 of 2023
Facts of the case: The appellant, accused no. 2, was a conductor, driver, and cleaner of a stage carriage bus. The victim, PW1, and her sister PW7 were waiting at a Karithambu bus stop for school. When PW1 tried to board the bus, accused no.3 pushed her down, causing serious injuries, including a pelvis fracture. The appellant was accused of starting the bus without waiting for PW1. The Sessions Court acquitted the driver but convicted the appellant and accused No. 3, sentenced to four years in prison and a fine of Rs.5,000 each. The High Court acquitted accused No. 3 and reduced the sentence to one year by directing him to pay a fine of Rs.50,000.
Court’s Observation: The court stated that it does not support the prosecution's evidence that the appellant intended to kill PW1 or to inflict bodily harm on her that would likely result in her demise. The Court observed that the appellant failed to uphold his duty of caution and behaved impatiently and carelessly.
Judgment: The appellant was found guilty of committing a crime punishable by up to six months of simple imprisonment under Section 338 of the IPC and an additional amount of Rs. 25000/- to the victim in addition to the fine of Rs. 50,000/- imposed by the High Court on the appellant.
7. Pradeep v. State of Haryana
Court: The Supreme Court of India
Citation: Criminal Appeal No. 553 OF 2012
Facts: The accused was found guilty by the Sessions Court of violating Sections 302 and 449 and Sections 324 of the Indian Penal Code when read in conjunction with Section 34 of the IPC. The testimony of a minor witness served as a basis for the conviction, which was later maintained by the Punjab and Haryana High Court. The appellant-accused claimed before the Apex Court that the juvenile witness' statement, which is replete with significant inconsistencies and improvements, has absolutely no corroboration and that his evidence is unreliable.
Court’s observation: The Trial Judge was required by Section 118 of the Evidence Act to record his belief that the youngster is able to understand the questions asked of him and that he is able to respond to them logically. The court further stated that the Trial Judge must document his belief that the juvenile witness understands the obligation to speak the truth and explain his reasoning for this belief.
Corroboration of a child witness' testimony is not a requirement, the court made clear, but rather an exercise in caution and precaution.
Judgment: The bench stated that there is no evidence to support or corroborate the statement of the minor/child witness, and it cannot be ruled out that the witness was instructed. While allowing the appeal, the court stated that it would not be safe to base the conviction only on this unreliable testimony.
8. Ramesh Kumar v. State NCT of Delhi
Court: The Supreme Court of India
Citation: SLP(Crl.) NO.2358 OF 2023
Facts: An FIR for a cheating offence was filed due to alleged breaches of a development agreement, and the appellant was included as one of the accused. The High Court granted bail on the condition that the appellant deposit 22 lakhs with the trial court. After the appellant provided an undertaking, the condition was enforced. The appellant, however, was unable to fulfil the requirement. The appellant petitioned the Supreme Court, arguing that the requirement was burdensome, in response to the High Court's rejection to extend the deadline for fulfilling the condition. The State argued against the appeal by claiming that the appellant offered to pay.
Court’s observation: this court referred to the case of Gurbaksh Singh Sibbia v. State of Punjab, where this court held that the courts should lean against the imposition of unnecessary restrictions on the scope of section 438 CrPC when no such restrictions have been imposed by the legislature.
The court disagreed with the imposition of such conditions. The condition imposed must not be onerous or excessive.
The Court made it clear that its observations should not be interpreted to have set a standard that in no circumstance could the accused's desire to make a payment or deposit be taken into account before granting an order for bail.
Judgment: According to the court, a civil disagreement cannot be resolved by the use of the criminal justice system. Even if the appellant had promised to pay, the high court shouldn't have given it any weight. The Supreme Court set aside the order of the High Court and directed the high court to reconsider the application for pre-arrest bail on its own merits
9. Bilal Ahmad Ganaie v. Sweety Rashid & Ors.
Court: Madra High Court
Citation: CRM (M) No. 65/2022
Facts: The Petitioner filed a petition under section 482 of the CrPC aggrieved by the order of the Judicial Magistrate in Pulwama in an application filed by the respondent under section 125 of CrPC. The order granting maintenance to the respondents under section 125 of CrPC. The Petitioner had also filed a revision petition against the order which was dismissed by the principal session judge.
Courts’ Observation: The court recalled the case of Surya Dev Rai v. Ram Chander Rai , even in cases where a second revision before the High Court after the dismissal of the first one by the Court of Session is barred under Section 397(2) of the Code, the inherent power of the Court has been held to be available. It is, thus, difficult to conceive that the jurisdiction of the High Court would be held to be barred only because the revisional jurisdiction could also be availed
The court observed that the lower court considered the case in light of the directions given in the Rajnesh case regarding overlapping jurisdiction and maintenance claims under the CrPC and the Domestic Violence Act. Further, the petitioner's argument regarding the non-disclosure of previous proceedings and orders by the respondents was incorrect
Judgment: There has been neither miscarriage of justice nor ends of justice are required to be secured. Hence the petition is dismissed.
10. State of Kerala v. Arumugham
Court: Kerala High Court
Citation: Crl.MC No. 1517 of 2023
Facts: The Case involves five minor girls leaving the care of their respective legal guardians with five different men to different locations. The accused had been charged with kidnapping and sexual assault of minors by the parents. It is submitted that this is a five separate case with similar facts.
The accused were detained under Section 363 of the Indian Penal Code (punishment for kidnapping) within the Sessions Court's territorial jurisdiction.
Court’s observation: The Court examined section 361 of IPC (kidnapping), and noted that section 361 safeguarded minors from being kidnapped or seduced for unlawful purposes as well as the privileges and rights of guardians who have legal charges or custody of their minor wards. The phrases "taking" or "enticing" were essential in drawing attention to the violation.
The Court observed the case of the State of Haryana v. Raja Ram (AIR 1973 SC 819 and Shajahan v. State of Kerala (2010 (4) KHC 294). In these cases, the court arrived at certain factors of kidnapping as an offence under section 361.
It was established that the minor girls were kidnapped within the local jurisdiction of the sessions court and would attract sections 361 (kidnapping) and 363 (punishment for kidnapping)
Judgment: This court set aside the order of the sessions court and directed the sessions court to proceed with final reports as per law.