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Duty Of Court Hearing First Appeal In Criminal Matters

What Is The Duty Of The Court Hearing First Appeal In Criminal Matters ?

Background of the case :-

The SC considered a Special Leave Petition against a Rajasthan High Court order which had dismissed an appeal against conviction recorded under section 302 IPC by the Trial Court.

Held :-

(1) The bench headed by Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul noticed that the High Court order is only a recitation of the evidence without appreciation of the same for purposes of reaffirming conviction in appeal.

(2) “We would like to say that the First Appeal in criminal matter requires the court to form his opinion on the basis of the evidence on record and the opinion of the Trial Court”, the bench said.

(3) The Court further said that, in this case, the High Court has set out the facts and also deposition by witnesses and then concluded that the prosecution was successful in proving guilt of the accused.

(4) “We are of the view that this can hardly meet the requirements of law for considering the First Appeal in criminal matters and thus, have no option but to set aside the impugned order and remit the matter back for consideration by the High Court on merits as a First Appeal in a Section 302 case of the I.P.C. in accordance with law.”, the court said while allowing the appeal.

(5) Taking note of the fact that the accused has been in actual custody for about eight and a half years, the court also granted him bail on terms and conditions to the satisfaction of the trial Court.



Special Leave to Appeal (Crl.) No(s). 4525/2020

Coram: Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul, Dinesh Maheshwari and Hrishikesh Roy

Dated : 16-10-2020

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