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SC judgements relied on to convict Talwars in Aarushi case

Ghaziabad (PTI): The circumstantial evidence relied upon to convict the Talwar couple in the Aarushi-Hemraj murder case was found to be similar to that used by the Supreme Court in 17 other cases to hold the accused guilty.

Additional Sessions Judge Shyam Lal relied upon the judgements of the apex court to buttress his conclusion that circumstantial evidence is enough to establish guilt of the accused even in the absence of any motive.

“The inmates of the house cannot get away by simply keeping quiet and offering no explanation on the supposed premise that the burden to establish its case lies entirely upon the prosecution and there is no duty at all on an accused to offer any explanation,” the judge said in his order.

“It is a matter of common knowledge that many a murder have been committed without any known or prominent motive. Mere fact that prosecution has failed to translate that mental disposition of the accused into evidence does not mean that no such mental condition existed in the mind of the assailant,” the judge said.

He cited the recent judgement of Vivek Kalra versus Rajasthan government which had stated “… It has been observed that where chain of other circumstances is established beyond reasonable doubt that it is the accused and accused alone who committed the offence it cannot be held in absence of motive that accused has not committed the offence.”

The judge quoted an order of Supreme Court which had said “… It has been held that where other circumstances lead to the only hypothesis that accused has committed the offence, court cannot acquit the accused of offence merely because motive for committing offence has not been established.”

Explaining the absence of motives, the judge quoted two more judgements given in cases from Haryana and West Bengal by the apex court which stated “… Evidence regarding existence of motive which operates in mind of an assassin is very often not within the reach of others.

“Motive may not even be known to victim. Motive may be known to assassin and none else may know what gave birth to such evil thought in his mind.”

In Ajit Singh Harnam versus Maharashtra government case, the apex court had said “… It has been held that motive is important in case of circumstantial evidence but it does not mean that if prosecution is unable to satisfactorily prove motive, its case must fail. Court cannot enter into the mind of human being.”

Quoting another judgement of 2010 of the Supreme Court in the case between Jagdish versus Madhya Pradesh state, the judge said, “… It has been held that in a case of circumstantial evidence motive does not have extreme significance. In absence of motive, the conviction based on circumstantial evidence can in principle be made.”

Lal then quoted an order of 2000 of the Supreme Court in the Prakash Sahi case saying that “mind is, indeed, a peculiar place and the working of human mind is often inscrutable. Motive is the moving power which impels action or a definite result or to put it differently motive is that which incites or stimulates a person to do an act.”

The judge also quoted other judgements of the Supreme Court which had stated “it is true that in a case relating to circumstantial evidence motive does assume great importance but to say that the absence of motive would dislodge the entire prosecution story is perhaps giving this one factor an importance which is not due and (to use the cliche) the motive is in the mind of the accused and can seldom be fathomed with any degree of accuracy.”

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