True it is, the grammar of law permits the testimony of a prosecutrix can be accepted without any corroboration without material particulars, for she has to be placed on a higher pedestal than an injured witness, but, a pregnant one, when a Court, on studied scrutiny of the evidence finds it difficult to accept the version of the prosecutrix, because it is not unreproachable, there is requirement for search of such direct or circumstantial evidence which would lend assurance to her testimony. As the present case would show, her testimony does not inspire confidence, and the circumstantial evidence remotely do not lend any support to the same.- In the case at hand, the learned trial Judge as well as the High Court have persuaded themselves away with this principle without appreciating the acceptability and reliability of the testimony of the witness. In fact, it would not be inappropriate to say that whatever the analysis in the impugned judgment, it would only indicate an impropriety of approach - Apex court set aside the orders of lower courts - 2015 S.C.msklawreports


  Section  363,  366  and  376  I.P.C - delay  in  lodging FIR -appreciated  from  a different perspective -The prosecutrix was missing from home for two months  -either  the  mother  or  the brother would have lodged a missing report at the police station -No explanation has been offered for such delay -The  recovery  of  the prosecutrix by  the  brother  and  her  friends  also  creates  a  cloud  of suspicion- Arif has not been examined - she had travelled from place  to  place  and  she  was  ravished number of times  - there are no  injuries  on  the  private  parts- The only explanation  - she  was threatened by the accused persons.  It is not in her testimony that she  was confined to one place-True it is, the grammar of law permits the testimony of  a  prosecutrix  can be accepted without any corroboration without material particulars, for  she has to be placed on a higher  pedestal  than  an  injured  witness,  but,  a pregnant one, when a Court, on studied scrutiny of  the  evidence  finds  it difficult to accept the version  of  the  prosecutrix,  because  it  is  not unreproachable,  there  is  requirement  for  search  of  such   direct   or circumstantial evidence which would lend assurance  to  her  testimony.   As the present case would show, her testimony does not inspire confidence,  and the circumstantial evidence remotely do not lend any support  to  the  same.- In  the  case  at  hand,  the  learned trial Judge as well as the High Court have persuaded  themselves  away  with this principle without appreciating the  acceptability  and  reliability  of the testimony of the witness.  In fact, it would  not  be  inappropriate  to say that whatever the analysis in  the  impugned  judgment,  it  would  only indicate an impropriety of approach - Apex court set aside the orders of lower courts - 2015 S.C.msklawreports

   The obtaining factual matrix has to be appreciated on  the  touchstone
of the aforesaid parameters.  Be it clearly stated  here  delay  in  lodging
FIR in cases under Section 376 IPC would depend upon facts of each case  and
this Court has given immense allowance to such delay, regard  being  had  to
the trauma suffered by the prosecutrix and  various  other  factors,  but  a
significant one, in the present case,  it  has  to  be  appreciated  from  a
different perspective.  The prosecutrix was missing from home.   In  such  a
situation, it was a  normal  expectation  that  either  the  mother  or  the
brother would have lodged a missing report at the police station.  The  same
was not done.  This action of  PW-2  really  throws  a  great  challenge  to
common sense.  No explanation has been offered for such delay.  The  learned
trial Judge has adverted to  this  facet  on  an  unacceptable  backdrop  by
referring to the principle that prosecutrix suffered  from  trauma  and  the
constraint of the social stigma.  The prosecutrix at that time  was  nowhere
on the scene.  It is the mother who was required to inform the police  about
missing of her grown up daughter.  In the absence  of  any  explanation,  it
gives rise to a sense of doubt.  That apart, the factum that  the  appellant
informed the mother of the victim that he had left the  prosecutirx  at  the
door of her house also does not command acceptance.   The  recovery  of  the
prosecutrix by  the  brother  and  her  friends  also  creates  a  cloud  of
suspicion.  We are not inclined to believe the prosecution  version  as  has
been projected that one Arif had informed the  brother  of  the  prosecutirx
that his sister was  at  his  place  but  for  reasons  best  known  to  the
prosecution, Arif has not been examined.  That apart, the persons  who  were
accompanying the brother have also not been  examined  by  the  prosecution.
Thus, the manner of recovery of the  prosecutrix  from  the  house  of  Arif
remains a mystery.
  Be it noted, there can be no iota of doubt that on the  basis  of  the
sole testimony of  the  prosecutrix,  if  it  is  unimpeachable  and  beyond
reproach, a conviction can be based.  In  the  case  at  hand,  the  learned
trial Judge as well as the High Court have persuaded  themselves  away  with
this principle without appreciating the  acceptability  and  reliability  of
the testimony of the witness.  In fact, it would  not  be  inappropriate  to
say that whatever the analysis in  the  impugned  judgment,  it  would  only
indicate an impropriety of approach.  The prosecutrix has deposed  that  she
was taken from one place to the other and remained  at  various  houses  for
almost two months.  The only explanation  given  by  her  is  that  she  was
threatened by the accused persons.  It is not in her testimony that she  was
confined to one place.  In fact, it has been borne out from the material  on
record that she had travelled from place  to  place  and  she  was  ravished
number of times.  Under these  circumstances,  the  medical  evidence  gains
significance, for the examining doctor has categorically deposed that  there
are no  injuries  on  the  private  parts.   The  delay  in  FIR,  the  non-
examination  of  the  witnesses,  the  testimony  of  the  prosecutrix,  the
associated circumstances and the medical evidence, leave a mark of doubt  to
treat the testimony of  the  prosecutrix  as  so  natural  and  truthful  to
inspire confidence.   It can be stated with certitude that the  evidence  of
the prosecutrix is not of such quality which can be  placed  reliance  upon.
True it is, the grammar of law permits the testimony of  a  prosecutrix  can
be accepted without any corroboration without material particulars, for  she
has to be placed on a higher  pedestal  than  an  injured  witness,  but,  a
pregnant one, when a Court, on studied scrutiny of  the  evidence  finds  it
difficult to accept the version  of  the  prosecutrix,  because  it  is  not
unreproachable,  there  is  requirement  for  search  of  such   direct   or
circumstantial evidence which would lend assurance  to  her  testimony.   As
the present case would show, her testimony does not inspire confidence,  and
the circumstantial evidence remotely do not lend any support  to  the  same.
In the absence of both, we are compelled to  hold  that  the  learned  trial
Judge has erroneously  convicted  the  accused-appellants  for  the  alleged
offences and the High Court has fallen into error,  without  re-appreciating
the material on record, by giving the stamp of approval to the same.
 Resultantly, the appeals  are  allowed,  judgment  of  conviction  and
order of sentence are set aside and as the appellants are on bail,  they  be
discharged of their bail bonds. - 2015 S.C.msklawreports

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