SUPREME COURT: PROSECUTION CASE CANNOT BE THROWN OUT ON THE GROUND OF DELAY IN LODGING THE FIR IN CASE OF SEXUAL ASSAULT

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In a significant ruling, the Supreme Court had ruled that delaying in lodging the FIR in a case of sexual assault is normal and the prosecution case cannot be thrown out on the ground of delay in lodging the FIR.

A bench comprising Justice S B Sinha and Justice Mukundakam Sharma, while upholding the conviction and sentence of a rapist of an eleven-year-old girl, noted ‘This court can take judicial notice of the fact that ordinarily the family of the victim would not intend to get a stigma attached to the victim.’ ‘Delay in lodging the first information report in a case of this nature is a normal phenomena.

‘Both the courts below apart from relying on a part of the testimony of the prosecutrix found the evidence of Prosecution Witren-five to be absolutely reliable. Medical evidence, itself being a part of the evidence, is required to be appreciated in the context of ocular evidence and other circumstance surrounding thereto.

‘There was some time gap between the occurrence and the examination of the witnesses. Some lapse of memory on the part of the child witness therefore is possible.’ The trial court sentenced Satyapal to seven year’s imprisonment along with a fine of Rs 20,000. Punjab and Haryana High court dismissed his appeal.

The apex court while upholding the judgment of the high court dismissed the appeal of the convict.

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