A Delhi court has sentenced a man to 10 years in jail for trying to kill a person who had deposed against him in a criminal case.
Additional Sessions Judge Vikas Dhull also slapped a fine of Rs 55,000 on Delhi-resident Maan Singh, saying, "The act of convict cannot be taken lightly as other witnesses of criminal trial will lose faith in the judicial system.
"Intimidating or injuring witnesses of a criminal trial on the ground that they have deposed against a person, if not dealt with strictly, will affect the criminal justice delivery system and will also erode faith of witnesses, who come to
depose before the courts."
According to the court, "One of the objectives ofsentencing a convict is to provide deterrent to potential offenders so that they do not commit similar offence.
"In the present case, convict (Maan) had shot at injured Bheem Singh and his brother Ghanshyam as he had a grudge against prosecution witness Ghanshyam, who had deposed against him in a previous criminal case."
It said out of Rs 55,000, Rs 30,000 should be given as compensation to Bheem Singh.
Maan was arrested by police in July 2010 for firing at complainant Bheem and his brother Ghanshyam, who had deposed against the accused in another criminal case.
The prosecution said during the attack, Bheem was hit by a bullet while his brother manage to escape the gun shot fired at him.
The court turned down the plea seeking a lenient view against 39-year-old Maan by his counsel who said that in all previous criminal cases registered against the convict, he had been acquitted and had clean antecedents.
"To maintain the faith of witnesses in the criminal justice delivery system, a strong message has to be given to potential offenders that in case witnesses of criminal trial
are going to be threatened, intimidated or shot at, as in the present case, then the court will definitely rise to the occasion and will inflict very harsh and a strict punishment
upon the offenders," the judge said.
The court, in its order, said if the convict has the audacity of shooting at a witness just because he had deposed against him in a previous criminal case, then he should be brave enough to face the consequences of his act and not plead for leniency on the ground that he has a family to look after.
"The convict should have thought about his family before committing the offence under Section 307 (attempt to murder) of IPC in question. Therefore, in the opinion of this court, the convict does not deserve any leniency," the judge said.