13 Jan 2121

The Trial Court is not obliged to consider the materials placed by the accused and is only required to consider the materials on record at the time of framing of charge or when discharge application is considered - Supreme Court of India

Case : Kattikara Rajappa v. The State of Nyamatti Police Criminal Revision Petition No. 200/2015

Court : Karnataka High Court

Bench : Justice V. Srishananda

Decided on : 13 Jan 2121

Relevant Stastutes

Section 227 and 228 of Code of Criminal Procedure 1973 

Brief Facts and Procedural History

1. The complainant Kattikara Rajappa is an agriculturist by profession and resident of Thaggihalli village filed a complaint under Section 109, 323, 307, 326,  325, 342 read with Section 34 of Indian Penal Code 1860 and It is further contended that earlier to filing a private complaint under Section 200 Code of Criminal Procedure 1973,  a complaint against the accused persons before the Nyamathi Police Station was filed and where it was alleged that the complainant has allowed his cattle’s to their paddy field and damaged the same and for which a fine was imposed on the complainant in a sum of Rs.6,000.

2. Afterwards, the wife of the complainant asked him as to why he has to give fine and told him to inform the same to the higher police authorities and further lodged a  complaint against the accused before the Nyamathi police alleging that the accused abused them in filthy language and accused No.4  (Police Constable of Cheeluru ) has snatched Rs.55 from the pocket of the complainant on 24.11.2006 and assaulted at 2.00 p.m. and confined him in a  room and assaulted with the stick and with legs when the complainant asked for water Accused  Nos.1 and 3 mixed some spurious liquid with liquor and made him drink forcibly made to drink the liquor which results in the complainant lost consciousness seeks for the petition.  

3. Later, At the time of framing of the charge, the accused persons filed an application under section .227 of Code of Criminal Procedure 1973  and seeking discharge of the accused persons and which was allowed and discharged the accused persons and the materials placed by the accused persons were also taken into account. The Revision Petition was filed by the Complainant against the above order.  

The Issue of the Case

Whether the Trial can take the material produced by the accused while considering the application under Section 227 of the Code of Criminal Procedure 1973?

The Observations of the Court:

1. The Honourable Karnataka High Court referred to one judgment i.e. the State of Orissa vs. Devendra Nath Padhi, 2005 (1) SCC 568, It was held that the Trial Court is not obliged to consider the materials placed by the accused and is only required to consider the materials on record at the time of framing of charge or when discharge application is considered. The Honorable High Court referred to another relevant judgment i.e. State of Maharashtra vs. Priya Sharan Maharaj and Others, 1997 (4) SCC 393, It was held that in Section 227 and 228, the Court has to evaluate the materials and documents on record. 

2. The Honourable Karnataka High Court referred another judgement i.e. State of Bihar vs. Ramesh Singh, 1977(4) SCC 39, In this case, the scope of Section 227 and 228 of the Code of Criminal Procedure 1973 was determined and held that it is not obligatory for the judge to consider in any detail whether the facts proved would be incompatible with the innocence of the accused or not or whether there is a sufficient ground for conviction or not.

3. The Honourable Karnataka High Court observed that it is a settled position of law that the materials produced by prosecution alone can be considered not by the accused. The Honourable High Court observed that if we allow the accused to put defence it would be against the principle of criminal jurisprudence. The Honourable High Court observed that hearing of the submission of the accused as per Section 227 Code of Criminal Procedure 1973 only means the record of the case as filed by the prosecution and documents submitted i.e. confined to the material produced by the police. 

4. The Honourable High Court observed that as per Section 227 of Code of Criminal Procedure 1973 what is necessary and relevant is the record which is produced in terms of Section 173 of Code of Criminal Procedure 1973 and the accused cannot invoke Section 91 of Code of Criminal Procedure 1973 at this stage to show his innocence as Section 91 Code of Criminal Procedure 1973 itself does not confer a right on accused to produce the document in his possession to prove his defence. 

The Decision Held by the Court

The Honourable Karnataka High Court held that the procedure adopted by the learned District Judge in considering the materials placed by the defence while deciding the application under Section 227 of the Code of Criminal Procedure 1973  is invalid and the Revision Petition is allowed. 

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