Kundan Singh v. State

Sachet SahniCase Summary

 Kundan Singh v. State
(2016) 1 DLT (Cri.) 144
 In the Delhi High Court
CRL.A. 711/2014
Before Justice Sanjiv Khanna and Justice R.K. Gauba
Decided on November 24, 2015

Relevancy of the case: Requirements under Section 65B of the Indian Evidence Act, 1872

Statutes & Provisions Involved

  • The Information Technology Act, 2000 (Section 2)
  • The Indian Penal Code, 1860 (Section 201, 302, 404)
  • The Indian Evidence Act, 1872 (Section 22A, 65A, 65B)

Relevant Facts of the Case

  • In this appeal, Kundan Singh challenges judgment dated January 18 2014, passed in S.C. No.32/2008 arising out of charge sheet filed in FIR No.592/07, Police Station Mehrauli, convicting him under Section 302 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 for the murder of his friend Vipin Kumar. The appellant has also been convicted under Section 201 and 404.
  • By order on sentence dated January 21 2014, the appellant has been sentenced to imprisonment for life, fine of Rs 15,000/- for the offence under Section 302 of IPC with a direction that in default of payment of fine, the appellant shall undergo rigorous imprisonment of one year. For the offence under Section 201, the appellant has been sentenced to rigorous imprisonment of seven years, fine of Rs.5,000/-, and in default of payment of fine, to undergo rigorous imprisonment of six months. For the offence under Section 404, the appellant has been sentenced to three years of rigorous imprisonment and a fine of Rs.5,000/-. On failure to pay the fine, the appellant will undergo rigorous imprisonment of six months. However, the benefit of Section 428 Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 would be given.

 Prominent Arguments by the Advocates

  • The learned counsel for the appellant argued that the said CD would be an electronic record and as per the ratio of the Supreme Court in Anwar P.V. v. P.K. Basheer and Ors., a certificate under Section 65B of the Evidence Act, is required for admitting secondary evidence.

Opinion of the Bench

  • The court said that the controversy has arisen whether a certificate under sub-section (4) to Section 65-B must be issued simultaneously with the production of the computer output or a certificate under Section 65B can be issued and tendered when the computer output itself is tendered to be admitted as evidence in the court. The computer output – when provisions of section 65B are satisfied is treated as evidence of the contents of the original or facts therein of which direct evidence is admissible.
  • However, mere admission or admissibility of the electronic record would not mean that the contents of the electronic record have been proved beyond doubt and debate and are automatically proved when the document is marked exhibit. The mere marking of a document as an exhibit does not dispense with the proof of its contents.
  • Such a certificate must accompany the electronic records like computer printout, Compact Disc (CD), Video Compact Disc (VCD), pen drive, etc., pertaining to which a statement is sought to be given in evidence when the same is produced in evidence. All these safeguards are taken to ensure the source and authenticity, which are the two hallmarks pertaining to the electronic record sought to be used as evidence.

Final Decision

  • The honourable court held that the trial court had rightly taken the certificate under Section 65 B of the Evidence Act and, accordingly, relied on the CDR of the telephone number involved. The appellant Kundan Singh has been rightly convicted for the murder of his friend Vipin Kumar and hence, the appeal has no merit and is dismissed.

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