The Meghalaya High Court has overturned the life sentence awarded by a lower court to a man who was convicted of murder.
Vicky Sun of Bishop Falls, Mawprem was sentenced to life imprisonment by the court of Additional Sessions Judge, East Khasi Hills District in July 2019 for the murder of his grandmother Hormon Sun at her house on August 13, 2015.
Sun who was sentenced under Section 302 IPC later challenged the order of the Additional Sessions Judge in the High Court.
In a verdict passed today, the division bench of the High Court disagreed with the sentence passed by the Additional Sessions Judge and altered the sentence to Section 304 Part II IPC with punishment of ten years imprisonment merged with the period of imprisonment already undergone by Sun.
“We find that the case of the appellant would fall under Exception 4 to Section 300 IPC and resultantly, the conviction under Section 302 IPC is hereby altered to Section 304 Part II IPC and punishment of ten years imprisonment would be sufficient. This sentence would merge with the period already undergone by the appellant and be calculated accordingly till completion of the same,” the High Court said.
The High Court observed that Sun’s intention was to rob from the house of the deceased and there is no evidence that he carried any weapon with him.
“On entering the house through the window, according to his version, the deceased woke up on seeing him and started beating him with a small water pipe and in the scuffle, he must have snatched the pipe from her hand and hit her on the head with the same. Thereafter, on seeing her falling to the ground, he fled from the house,” the court said.
“On this, only one conclusion can be reached i.e. there was no intention to kill the deceased, therefore, premeditation is not present. The blow on the head was hit as a result of a scuffle which could be construed as the act being done in a heat of passion and there is no evidence that the appellant acted in a cruel manner,” the High Court observed.
Sun was arrested by police on August 25, 2015 for the murder of his grandmother. On being interrogated, he confessed to have murdered his grandmother and also to the theft of cash of Rs 18,000 and gold earrings from the possession of the deceased after hitting her with an iron pipe.
On his leading, police recovered cash amounting to Rs 7460 the gold earrings and the mobile phone.
After conclusion of the investigation, the investigating officer submitted the final report and charge sheet on April 20, 2016 with an observation that a prima facie case under Section 302 IPC is well established against Sun.
The Sessions Judge on November 8, 2017, then framed charges under Section 302 IPC against Sun in Sessions Case No. 25 of 2016, to which the accused pleaded guilty. The Sessions Judge convicted the accused and sentenced him to undergo life imprisonment.
Sun in his statement before the court under Section 313 CrPC had said that his initial intention was to rob his grandmother, but when he entered her bedroom, she saw him and tried to shout and was beating him with one small water pipe, to which he snatched the said water pipe from her and hit her on the head, then he fled away from the scene.