Suspicion, howsoever grave, cannot substitute proof, said the Supreme Court while setting aside a high court and trial court judgment that had found a duo guilty for murder.
The high court, in this case, had affirmed the trial court findings that one Gurunathan was murdered by his wife and her alleged paramour.
On appeal, the bench comprising Justice Dipak Mishra and Justice Amitava Roy observed that there was some evidence suggestive of such an alliance between the appellants at the relevant point of time. This, per se, in our comprehension, however, cannot be accepted as a decisive incriminating factor to deduce their culpability qua the charge of murder of the deceased Gurunathan, the bench said.
“The imputation of sustained unchaste conduct and the activities of the wife, if true, the possibility of the deceased committing suicide as an extreme step in a unbearable anguished state of mind also cannot be wholly excluded,” the bench further observed.
Setting aside the conviction, the court also observed that the prosecution has failed to elevate its case from the realm of “may be true” to the plane of “must be true” as is indispensably required in law for conviction on a criminal charge.
Read the Judgment here.