Shorter term for undertrial who forged order

Virender, who is in his 20s, is facing trial in other cases including murder, attempted murder and robbery.

Written by Kaunain Sheriff M | New Delhi | Published: November 19, 2014 1:18 am

In November 2013, Metropolitan Magistrate Anuj Aggarwal received a request from Rohini Jail authorities to review its March 2012 order — permitting undertrial prisoner Virender to use sport shoes, leather belt, a wrist watch with chain, carry bag and a diary. While reading the request, the magistrate realised that the order was forged and directed police to register an FIR.

After investigation was carried out, a trial court, relying heavily upon forensic report, held Virender guilty under IPC Section 468 (forgery for purpose of cheating) and sentenced him to seven years rigorous imprisonment. The convict then moved the sessions court to challenge this order.

However, a sessions court on Monday, while upholding the conviction of Virender, reduced his sentence from seven years to three by diluting the charge of forgery to that under IPC Section 474 (possessing forged document.

Meanwhile, the author of the forged document has still not been traced.

Virender, who is in his 20s, is facing trial in other cases including murder, attempted murder and robbery. According to the prosecution, on November 22, 2012, Virender, who was lodged in Rohini jail, was found wearing sports shoes, chain, wrist watch and a belt. Asked for an explanation by the assistant superintendent of the jail, he presented a court order which permitted him to use the articles.

Suspecting the document to be forged, the assistant superintendent forwarded it to the court for review after which it was found that the magistrate, whose signatures and stamps were used on it, had never passed such an order.

Reducing Virender’s jail term, the sessions court on Monday said the forensic opinion did not nail down the accused as the author of the forged order of the court.

“There is nothing on record to substantiate the theory of criminal conspiracy. The forensic opinion also does not nail down the accused as author of the forged order of the court, and therefore, the trial court should not have held him guilty under Section 468 of the IPC,” Additional Sessions Judge Manoj Jain said.

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