हिंदी समाचार पढ़े
Expand
O.P. Jindal Global University
 
Home / Articles / Supreme Court Case Analysis: State (N.C.T. of Delhi) v. Navjot Sandhu @ Afsan Guru (Parliament Attack Case) By: Shashwat Tiwari

Supreme Court Case Analysis: State (N.C.T. of Delhi) v. Navjot Sandhu @ Afsan Guru (Parliament Attack Case) By: Shashwat Tiwari

June 10,2018:

Supreme Court Case Analysis- State (NCT of Delhi) v. Navjot Sandhu @ Afsan Guru By- Shashwat Tiwari Download PDF)

Supreme Court Case Analysis:

State (N.C.T. of Delhi) v. Navjot Sandhu @ Afsan Guru[1] (Parliament Attack Case)

The Author, Shashwat Tiwari is a 3rd Year student of Institute of Law, Nirma University, Ahmedabad. He is currently interning with LatestLaws.com.

INTRODUCTION

The case of Afsan Guru is remarkable in the history of India being of few attacks which were held with the intent to damage the sovereignty of the state. Although the case had many nuances relating to admissibility of electronic records and the impact it may have on the judgement, the apex court at the end partially ruled in favour of the appellants vindicating one of accused of some charges and dismissing the appeal for the conviction of S.A.R Gilani and Afsan Guru. But after several deliberations the legislators sought to pass a law which makes electronic records admissible, in order to deal with the challenges of the 21st century.

Supreme Court
Supreme Court

 

FACTS OF THE CASE

  1. On 13th December, 2001, five heavily armed persons entered the premises of Parliament House complex and killed the security personnel on the duty.
  2. The gun battle between the terrorists and the security guards went on for 30 minutes which led to the death of all the five terrorists and 13 guards and In the gun battle that lasted for 30 minutes or so, these five terrorists who tried to gain entry received fatal injuries (9 persons including 8 security personnel and 1 gardener succumbed to the bullets of the terrorists and 16 persons including 13 security men received injuries.)
  3. Jaish-E-Mohammed, one of the banned terrorist organisation under section 35 of Unlawful Activities (prevention) Act , 1967 claimed the responsibility of the dastard act and following the investigations for seven days the accused which were suspected to have a possible involvement were also affiliated to the same organisation. The four accused were Mohd. Afzal, Shaukat Hussain, S.A.R. Gelani and Afsan Guru (Navjot Sandhu).
  4. After the investigations which went on for a short period of 17 days the investigating agency filed the report under section 173 of Cr.P.C and named four accused. The four accused were Mohd. Afzal, Shaukat Hussain, S.A.R. Gelani and Afsan Guru (Navjot Sandhu).
  5. Accused were charged under various sections of Indian Penal Code (for short ‘IPC’), the Prevention of Terrorism Act, 2002 and the Explosive Substances Act by the designated Special The designated Special Court presided over by Shri S.N. Dhingra and tried the accused on the charges. The trial went on for six months and as much as 80 witnesses were examined from the prosecution side and 10 witnesses were examined from the side of defence. It is recorded that around 330 documents were exhibited by the court in the case.
  6. The three accused, namely, Mohd. Afzal, Shaukat Hussain Guru and S.A.R. Gilani were convicted for various offences under Sections 121, 121A, 122 read with Sections 302 & 307 of Indian Penal Code (IPC). Also Section 120B IPC and sub-sections (2), (3) and (5) of Section, sub-Sections (2), (3) & (5) of Section 3 of POTA and Section 4(b) of the same act and Section 3 & 4 of Explosive Substances Act.

 

DECISION OF THE SPECIAL COURT

 

The three accused, namely, Mohd. Afzal, Shaukat Hussain Guru and S.A.R. Gilani were convicted for the charges that were imposed under various acts including IPC, POTA and Explosive Substance Act. Accused 1 & 2 namely Mohd. Afzal and Shaukat Hussain were also convicted under Section 3 and 4 of POTA. Accused No.4 namely Navjot Sandhu (Afsan Guru) was acquitted of all the other charges except Section 123 IPC which is “Concealing with intent to facilitate design to wage war” for which she was suppose to undergo Rigorous Imprisonment for five years and fine.

The other three accused were given death sentences for the offences committed by them under Section 302 (murder) read with Section 120-B IPC (party to criminal conspiracy) and Section 3(2) of POTA. The amount of Rs.10 lakhs recovered from the possession of two of the accused, Mohd. Afzal and Shaukat Hussain, was forfeited to the State under Section 6 of the POTA.

 

CONFIRMATION OF THE HIGH COURT

Appeals by the parties

  • The four accused filed a appeal against the verdict of the designated special court, in the High Court and the state also filed an appeal for the enhancement of Life sentence awarded to sentence of death in relation to their convictions under Sections 121, 121A and 302 IPC.
  • The state also filed an appeal to convict one of the four accused which was earlier vindicated of all the charges except section 123 of IPC.

 

DECISION OF THE DIVISION BENCH OF HIGH COURT

  • The High Court dismissed the appeals of Mihd. Afzal and Shaukat Hussain and confirmed the death sentence awarded to them. The court also confirmed their death sentence with respect to Section 121 and confirmed the death sentence. However the court allowed the appeals of other two accused which are S.A.R. Gilani and Navjot Sandhu (Afsan Guru) and thereby acquitted them of all charges.
  • The judgment of High Court has given rise to seven which were filed in the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India in the following manner; (i) Two appeals filed by Shaukat Hussain Guru, (ii) One appeal filed by Mohd. Afzal, (iii) Four appeals filed by the State/Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi against the acquittal of S.A.R. Gilani and Navjot Sandhu.

 

ISSUES TO BE CONSIDERED

Confessions of the co-accused

  • The court while examining the confession of the co-accused should have taken following propositions into consideration which were laid down in Ahmed anr. v. State of Rajasthan [2003 (9) SCC 673] ” In regard to the use of such confession as against a co- accused, it has to be held that as a matter of caution, a general corroboration should be sought for but in cases where the court is satisfied that the probative value of such confession is such that it does not require corroboration then it may base a conviction on the basis of such confession of the co-accused without corroboration. But this is an exception to the general rule of requiring corroboration when such confession is to be used against a co-accused.”

The nature of corroboration is of a general nature as used against both the maker and the co-accused, unless the court concluded that such corroboration should be on the material facts of the particular case and a generalised idea or proposition cannot be adopted and applied in every case as the facts of each case differ. In the present scenario confession against the maker and the co- accused is absolutely general in nature it does not lay perfect grounds for the Court in the appropriate case to base the conviction on the confession of the co-accused without even general corroboration.

  • “The voluntariness and reliability of confession should be matter tested by the court. The admission of such confession would also be subject to the observance of the other provisions of Section 32 of POTA which are in the nature of procedural safeguards aimed at ensuring that the confessions are made by the accused in an atmosphere free from threat and inducement” as in the judgement of Ahmed v. State of Rajasthan.

Call records and its authenticity

  • One of the major issues raised from the side of the accused was the inadmissibility of the electronic records (mobile phone call records) which the prosecution has produced for consideration in the appeal, the counsel on behalf of the accused raised the issue of credibility and reliance on the telephone records which were produced by the prosecution. The records lose their credibility because there was no certificate produced by the prosecution which is necessary for admitting any electronic record under Section 65B(4) of the Evidence Act.
  • In the absence of the certificate issued under sub-Section (2) of Section 65B of the Indian Evidence Act, the information provided by the electronic record cannot be adduced in evidence and also in absence of a “competent” witness accustomed with the functioning of the computers during the time printouts were taken the secondary evidence under Section 63 is also inadmissible.
  • The apex Court concluded that the cross-examination of competent witness acquainted with the functioning of the computer during the relevant time and the manner in which the printouts of the call records were taken was sufficient to prove the call records

 

COMMENT

Science and law, two distinctive professions and with the evolution of society both have comfortably mixed and supplemented each other in various manner  and has also ensured a fair process as well as justice being delivered. On one hand, scientific evidence holds out the possibility of extremely accurate fact-finding and a elimination of uncertainty by providing objectivity which often accompanies legal decision making. But at the same time, scientific methodologies, from the modern times include risks of uncertainty that the legal system is reluctant to undertake.

The above analysis  categorically states the idea that though the Indian evidence law cannot be said to be outdates in the wake of new scientific challenges, as suitable amendments have been incorporated, however much remains to be done to make it comprehensively adequate to face any modern challenges that have time and again arose.

Therefore it is imperative to bring in new laws and reduce the writings of judicial pronouncements in order to bolster the Indian legal system that, the accused, in any case can take the support of any technical glitches which may help his acquittal even after committing the crime. Also there is a need for an overhaul in the entire justice system by adoption of E-governance, internet supervision and internet friendly environment in the Judiciary. E-Governance to the judiciary means, use of information and communication technology to smoothen and accelerate case progression to reach its logical end within the set time frame  with adequate transparency and accountability so that nothing is left untouched and every aspect of the case even if relating to internet, electronic record or its admissibility is taken into consideration.

 

[1]

Facebook Comments

Hindu Hindu

Hindu

Auto Driver thrashed for no fault Auto Driver thrashed for no fault,                  source oneindia

TOI

America First Walk Your own Talk Lawyers Bearing the Burden Literally Lawyers Bearing the Burden Literally pic by OMG Pic by Hindu Women Empowerment and Sports Women Empowerment and Sports Demonitisation Diaries 1 Demonitisation Diaries 1                                  pic by sify  

TOI

[caption id="attachment_97462" align="alignleft" width="524"]Painting India Saffron Painting India Saffron[/caption] If India takes One Step, we will take Two by Satish If India takes One Step, we will take Two ...................by Satish TOI [caption id="attachment_97474" align="alignleft" width="621"]Donald Trump’s immigration ban Donald Trump’s immigration ban[/caption] State of Affairs Women Safety: State of Affairs             pic by mangal 150425_-_farmers_a_2384764f

Hindu

Humour @ Latest Laws Achhey Din Humour @ Latest Laws: Achhey Din

pinterest

TOI Demonitisation Diaries Demonitisation Diaries                                                       by sify

Hindu

ALL_1_Theme_01A_24_2383617g

Hindu

Cartoon [caption id="attachment_97477" align="alignleft" width="621"]UIDAI Leaks UIDAI Leaks[/caption] Alligator vs Litigator Alligator vs Litigator

TOI

Hindu

TOI

Hindu Hindu Hindu Delivery Boy Delivery Boy                    by Satish

TOI

Job Hazards Hindu Hindu Hindu

Hindu

Acheche DIn Acheche Din     pic by sify Demonitisation Diaries 2 Demonitisation Diaries 2  pic by sify Hindu Let Justice Be Let Justice Be

Hindu

Soaring of Oil Prices pic by indiaone

TOI

TOI

Hindu

Hindu

Hindu

Four Pillars of Democracy Four Pillars of Democracy             by Satish

Hindu Hindu

TOI

Hindu TOI Belts are for Dogs Belts are for Dogs TOI Hindu Tax Reforms    by Hindu Tax Reforms by Hindu TOI Missing the Point Missing the Point pic by english blog

...as an eminent lawyer you ought to know that your action tantamount to, under Section B, sub-section G.VIX, read along with I.P.C. (A) XI (B), notwithstanding...                                        TOI

State of Two Nations State of Two Nations               pic by sandeep [caption id="attachment_97467" align="alignleft" width="621"]Humour with Latest Laws Humour with Latest Laws[/caption]

Hindu

Time to straighten up Time to straighten up                pic by TOI

IBN IBN

TOI

TOI

 
 
 

Check Also

Diplomatic Means of Dispute Settlement Between States: How Different are they from Judicial Means? By: Divyansh Hanu

December 13,2018: The Author, Divyansh Hanu Rathi, is currently pursuing his Masters in Law (LLM) in International Dispute Resolution at Kings College London. Diplomatic Means of Dispute Settlement Between States By Divyansh Hanu Introduction Our society has been forever riddled ...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Latest laws

Join our mailing list to receive the Latest Laws News and updates from our team.