Showing undue sympathy by reducing the sentence can damage confidence in the effectiveness of the law: SC

The Supreme Court said on Tuesday that the seriousness of the crime is the main consideration in deciding the appropriate sentence and that if undue sympathy is shown in minimizing the sentence, it could damage people’s confidence in the effectiveness of the sentence. law. The Supreme Court said the court must always weigh aggravating and mitigating circumstances when imposing a sentence.

A panel of Justices Surya Kant and AS Oka, dealing with an appeal against a Bombay High Court judgment, increased the sentence to six months in addition to one year simple imprisonment imposed on three convicts in a case from 1992.

In its December 2016 verdict, the High Court reduced the three-year sentence imposed on four people by the trial court to one year.

The Supreme Court noted in its judgment that one of the defendants had died and the plaintiff’s appeal is dismissed against him.

“In sentencing, judicial discretion is always guided by various considerations such as the seriousness of the crime, the circumstances in which the crime was committed and the background of the accused. The court is required to s ‘stick to the principle of proportionality,’ the bench said.

“If excessive sympathy is shown in minimizing the sentence, it can undermine people’s confidence in the effectiveness of the law. It is the seriousness of the crime that is the primary consideration in deciding what the appropriate sentence should be. “, did he declare. .

The Supreme Court observed that a reading of the High Court’s judgment showed that no finding had been made as to the existence of any relevant mitigating circumstances in favor of the defendant.

He said the finding recorded by the trial court shows the appellant suffered 11 injuries in the incident.

The bench noted that the High Court had upheld the defendant’s conviction for the offences, including under Section 326 (willfully causing grievous bodily harm by weapon or dangerous means) read with Section 34 (intention commune) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).

“The maximum sentence for the offense punishable under Article 326 of the ICC is life imprisonment. Even after considering the nature of the serious injuries suffered by the appellant, the trial court adopted a lenient attitude handing down the jail sentence of just 3 years,” the bench noted.

She observed that, given the seriousness of the offence, there was no justification for leniency.

While increasing the sentence, the training says it proposes to grant reasonable compensation to the victims in addition to the compensation charged to the high court.

He ordered the three defendants to pay an additional amount of Rs 40,000 to the appellant and the injured witness.

“In modifying the contested judgment of the Tribunal de Grande Instance, we order that in addition to the substantive sentence pronounced by the Tribunal de Grande Instance for the offense punishable under Article 326 read with Article 34 of the IPC , Respondent Nos. 1, 2 and 4 should serve a simple six-month prison term,” he added.

While partially allowing the appeal, the Supreme Court said these three would go to trial court within six weeks to serve a simple six-month jail sentence.

According to the prosecution, in March 1992, the appellant approached a store and it was alleged that one of the defendants abused a person, who later became one of the witnesses to the affair.

He said that when the caller tried to intervene, he was slapped.

Later, while the appellant was sitting with the person who had been assaulted, the four accused came and assaulted them.