Lacunae In The Investigation: Delhi HC Sets Aside Order Convicting Man For Drugging Another Person To Steal Car
The Delhi High Court has set aside the Trial Court’s Order whereby a man was convicted and sentenced for allegedly drugging another person to steal his car.
The Court observed that the evidence placed on record was insufficient to return a finding of guilt under Section 328 of the Indian Penal Code.
The bench of Justice Swarana Kanta Sharma held that “…essential ingredients to prove commission of offence under Section 328 IPC were glaringly missing in the present case. Despite there being nothing on record for proving the ingredients of Section 328 IPC, the learned Trial Court, though observing lacunae in the investigation, had convicted the appellant under Section 328 IPC and the said conviction is not sustainable in the eyes of law.”
In this case, the complainant had stated that his car was hired by the accused from Ballabhgarh to Delhi, and they had reached I.T.O, Delhi at about 1:00 pm. Upon reaching there, the accused had told the complainant to stop the car near a rehri and he had allegedly administered certain stupefying drug to the complainant by mixing the same in juice and had told the complainant to take the car by the side of a Hotel/Dhaba.
The complainant stated that thereafter, he had lost consciousness and had regained consciousness only at about 10:00 am and he could not find the alleged person and his car was also missing.
The Trial Court convicted the appellant for offence punishable under Section 328 I.P.C. and was directed to undergo rigorous imprisonment for a period of six months with fine of Rs.20,000/.
The appellant already deposited fine amount of Rs.20,000/- with the Trial Court and being aggrieved by the judgment and order on sentence passed by the Trial Court, he approached the High Court.
Advocate Giri Raj Singh appeared for the appellant whereas APP Naresh Kumar Chahar appeared for the State.
The High Court noted that there was no medical evidence to prove that complainant was administered any stupefying, intoxicating or unwholesome drug. The Court further observed that the concerned doctor was not examined who had medically examined the complainant.
The Court further noted that it wasn’t proved as to how the complainant reached his house at Ballabhgarh from Delhi in state of unconsciousness.
Thus the Court held, “…the evidence placed on record is insufficient to return a finding of guilt under Section 328 IPC, the present appeal is thereby allowed and the impugned judgment dated 21.03.2009 and order on sentence dated 24.03.2009 passed by learned Trial Court are set aside.”
Cause Title- Krishna Kant v. State (Neutral Citation No. 2023:DHC:235)