Stating that the investigation in an alleged case of assault was “thoroughly botched up”, a Delhi court pulled up the Delhi Police for connecting “two innocents” with the crime in a “filmsy thread”, and acquitted the two accused. The court also said that a copy of the judgment be sent to the Commissioner of Police for “information and necessary introspection as regards the manner in which the case was investigated”.
District and Sessions Judge Girish Kathpalia said that such a “farcical” and “tawdry” investigation cannot be accepted in any “sensitive system of administration” of criminal justice. According to court records, an alleged case of assault of one Sonu in the parking lot of Inland Container Depot Tughlaqabad was reported on the intervening night of December 8-9, 2016.
As per records, Sonu was brought to his home by three-four boys, including the accused, and his family was told that he had consumed liquor and hence needed to sleep. However, when Sonu did not wake up till late evening, he was taken to AIIMS Trauma Centre for treatment.
The prosecution placed on record the opinion of a senior resident doctor, AIIMS Trauma Centre, which said that the “patient suffered from internal head injury.” However, the court said that there was no evidence on record to suggest as to who made the diagnosis, adding that the medical evidence was “shaky”.
The court also noted the statement of one of the accused stating that the Investigating Officer (IO) had called him to the police station and told him that he had “to book someone in the case”, and assured him that “he (accused) would be released on bail as soon as Sonu (victim) regains consciousness.”
The court also said that there was no “reliable evidence” which could establish that the “unfortunate condition of Sonu is on account of assault as alleged by prosecution”. “It was not a blind crime. There was enough evidence available and could be collected, had the IO cared to work sincerely. The alleged spot of the assault was parking of ICD Tughlaqabad where CCTV cameras are installed. No efforts were done by either of the IO to obtain and examine the CCTV footage,” the court said.
The court then said that the investigation has to be “processual journey” from crime to criminal through a “step-by-step” collection of evidence. “But in the present case, instead of travelling that journey, two innocents were pulled out and connected with the crime by a flimsy thread. Both the accused persons are acquitted,” the court said.