Babu Sahebagouda Rudragoudar vs State Of Karnataka 2024 INSC 320 – S 378 CrPC – S 27 Evidence Act

Code Of Criminal Procedure, 1973; Section 378,386– scope of interference by an appellate Court for reversing the judgment of acquittal recorded by the trial Court in favour of the accused has to be exercised within the four corners of the following principles:-(a) That the judgment of acquittal suffers from patent perversity; (b) That the same is based on a misreading/omission to consider material evidence on record; (c) That no two reasonable views are possible and only the view consistent with the guilt of the accused is possible from the evidence available on record- The appellate Court, in order to interfere with the judgment of acquittal would have to record pertinent findings on the above factors if it is inclined to reverse the judgment of acquittal rendered by the trial Court – H.D. Sundara & Ors. v. State of Karnataka (2023) 9 SCC 581 and Rajesh Prasad v. State of Bihar (2022) 3 SCC 471. (Para 36-42)

Indian Evidence Act, 1872; Section 27- The statement of an accused recorded by a police officer under Section 27 of the Evidence Act is basically a memorandum of confession of the accused recorded by the Investigating Officer during interrogation which has been taken down in writing. The confessional part of such statement is inadmissible and only the part which distinctly leads to discovery of fact is admissible in evidence when the Investigating Officer steps into the witness box for proving such disclosure statement, he would be required to narrate what the accused stated to him. The Investigating Officer essentially testifies about the conversation held between himself and the accused which has been taken down into writing leading to the discovery of incriminating fact(s) – Referred to State of Uttar Pradesh v. Deoman Upadhyaya AIR 1960 SC 1125. (Para 58-60) – mere exhibiting of memorandum prepared by the Investigating Officer during investigation cannot tantamount to proof of its contents. While testifying on oath, the Investigating Officer would be required to narrate the sequence of events which transpired leading to the recording of the disclosure statement – Referred to Ramanand @ Nandlal Bharti v. State of Uttar Pradesh 2022 SCC OnLine SC 1396, Subramanya v. State of Karnataka 2022 SCC Online SC 1400, Mohd. Abdul Hafeez v. State of Andhra Pradesh (1983) 1 SCC 143. (Para 62-65)

Indian Evidence Act, 1872; Section 60 – Oral evidence in all cases must be direct. The section leaves no ambiguity and mandates that no secondary/hearsay evidence can be given in case of oral evidence, except for the circumstances enumerated in the section. In case of a person who asserts to have heard a fact, only his evidence must be given in respect of the same. (Para 61)

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