Published on: June 23, 2022 at 16:05 IST
The Petition challenging the High Court of Kerala’s decision of November 24, 2020, upholding the appellant’s conviction under Section 55(a) of the Abkari Act was being heard by the Supreme Court of India.
In this case;
The appellant under the leadership of co-accused (A3 to A5) was found dealing with spirit and for that purpose, A3 had taken house on rent.
A3 to A5 purchased 3000 litres of liquor in 86 cans, each holding 35 litres, and stored it in two upstairs rooms of the aforementioned house before giving it to the appellant (A1) and A2 to handle on a commission basis. PW10 and his police team discovered this on June 12th, 1999. The prosecution claims that the accused committed an offence under Sections 309 IPC and 55(a) of the Abkari Act when they injured the wrist area of their hands in an attempt to commit suicide after the appellant and A2 learned of the situation.
The trial Court found the appellant (A1), A2 and A3 guilty and convicted them under Section 55(a) of the Abkari Act and A1 and A2 under Section 309 IPC.
The SC determined that there was no justification to differ from the finding of conviction returned by the learned trial court and confirmed by the High Court under the impugned judgement after reviewing the record, statements of PW1 through PW11, and the accused appellant’s statement recorded under Section 313 CrPC.
SC stated that, “at the same time, taking into consideration the overall aspect of the matter and the fact that 23 years have been rolled by this time from the date of incident and also noticing that there are no criminal antecedents against the appellant, while upholding conviction under Section 55(a), consider it appropriate to modify the sentence to simple imprisonment of one year and to pay a fine of Rs. 1,00,000/, in default of payment of fine, to further undergo simple imprisonment of six months.”