Observing that the husband had no intention to kill the wife when he banged her head against the wall in inebriated state after a quarrel over buying chicken, the Bombay High Court has reduced his sentence from life imprisonment for murder to 10 years imprisonment for culpable homicide not amounting to murder.
A division bench of justices SS Shinde and SP Tavade, on December 23, reduced the life sentence of Jaiprakash Mishra, 49, saying that the Mishra did not have any intention of killing his wife, but at the same time he was aware that his act (of banging her head against the wall) could cause her death.
“Admittedly, the appellant (Mishra) had not used any weapon while assaulting his wife. It appears that in the heat of anger accused banged head of Gayatri (deceased) on the wall which caused death…. It is crystal clear that the appellant had knowledge that his act of causing injury to Gayatri (deceased) may cause her death. However, the said act was not pre-meditated or planed or designed or intended,” said HC which convicting him for culpable homicide not amounting to murder.
The HC was hearing an appeal filed by Mishra against the order of sessions court at Alibaug of November 30, 2015, sentencing him to life imprisonment.
According to prosecution, the couple, who was addicted to alcohol, would often quarrel over not having any child after 20 years of marriage.
On August 2, 2015, in the wee hours at 4 am, the wife insisted that the husband go an buy chicken which he refused and a quarrel followed. In the heat of the moment, Mishra banged Gayatri’s head against the wall 7-8 times, said additional public prosecutor VB Konde-Deshmukh.
After realising that she was lying lifeless, Mishra called Gayatri’s brother, Krishanakumar Tiwari, in Bhopal and confessed to having banged her head against the wall. On Tiwari’s insistence, Mishra called on the ambulance helpline number and informed them about the incident.
When the medical team reached his house, he narrated the incident to the ambulance doctor.
Lokes Zade and Nikhil Waje, advocates for Mishra, argued that Gayatri herself banged her head against the wall in inebriated state as she was depressed as they did not have a child after 20 years of marriage.
The court also observed that although the incident happened early in the morning at 4.00 am, Mishra informed Tiwari in the afternoon, around 1.30 pm to 2.30 pm and informed ambulance doctor around 3.00 to 3.50 pm.
The HC upheld Mishra’s conviction, but reduced it to 10 years saying that “act was not pre-meditated or planed or designed or intended”.
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