Courts must ensure veracity of dying declaration: SC

Last Updated: Wednesday, December 23, 2009 - 20:04

New Delhi: The Supreme Court has asked
lower courts to ensure the veracity of a dying declaration
which should be free from tutoring to inspire full confidence
about its correctness for convicting an accused.

"The dying declaration is recognised by law to be
given greater weightage but it should be such which inspires
full confidence of the court of its correctness," a Bench
comprising Justices Aftab Alam and Deepak Verma said.

It also cautioned the subordinate courts "to be on
guard that such statement of deceased was not a result of
either tutoring, prompting or product of imagination."

The apex court made the remarks while setting aside
the conviction and life imprisonment awarded to a woman by a
trial court, which was affirmed by the Rajasthan High Court,
in connection with the death of his daughter-in-law on the
ground that the first two dying declarations of the victim
were not consistent with the third one.

The trial court and the High Court had relied on one
of the three dying declarations of the victim to hold the
accused guilty.

The victim had given three dying declarations with the
first two stating that she died of accidental fire while
cooking.
Ignoring them, the trial court and the high court had
given credence to the third declaration made by her before an
executive magistrate in which it was stated that the
mother-in-law had poured kerosene oil and set her on fire.

PTI



First Published: Wednesday, December 23, 2009 - 20:04

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