Bus driver acquitted in accident case, delay in registering of FIR remains unexplained: court

JAGPREET SINGH SANDHU
Bus driver acquitted in accident case, delay in registering of FIR remains unexplained: court

Finding the prosecution case unreliable and statements doubtful, the district court while acquitting the driver of Volvo bus in the road accident case which killed five persons, held that, "…the delay in registration of FIR remained unexplained and because of this, dent has been caused in the case of the prosecution…"

The court while acquitting driver of the Volvo bus, Surinder Singh in an appeal, has observed on the delay on registration of FIR in the case, that "…there is danger of introduction of a coloured version in delayed report."

The driver of the Volvo bus Surinder Singh who had been held guilty and sentenced imprisonment of two years by the JMIC Court earlier in 2017, has been acquitted from the charges on March 6, from the court of Balbir Singh, District and Sessions Court of Chandigarh.

While rejecting the prosecution case in whole, the court observed in judgement, "… A delayed report not only gets bereft of the advantage of spontaneity, the danger of the introduction of a coloured version, an exaggerated account of the incident or a concocted story, as a result of deliberations and consultations, also creeps in, casting a serious doubt on its veracity. Thus, First Information Report is to be filed promptly and if there is any delay, the prosecution must furnish a satisfactory explanation for the same for the reason that in case the substratum of the evidence given by the complainant/informant is found to be unreliable…"

The judgment read, "Even if concession is given of the time spent in evacuating the bodies of the persons from the car in question which caught fire as a result of the accident and transportation of the injured and the delay remained unexplained, therefore, the delayed version of the FIR recorded on the statement of complainant PW-1 HC Mahi Pal at the place of accident and having witnessed the accident is doubtful therefore, the delay in registration of FIR remained unexplained and because of this, dent has been caused in the case of the prosecution…"

Thus disbelieving the entire case of the prosecution, the court acquitted the accused driver from the charges, after five years, observing, "it cannot be said that accident in question had taken place due to rash and negligent driving on the part of Surinder Singh accused, driver of the bus in question and rather the same was due to rash or negligent driving of the driver of car no.HP-03(T)-4103…"

Five persons including a woman were killed while 16 others were critically injured on the red light junction of Sector-45/46/49/50, on August 22, 2014. The victims who died were Dipanshu Gupta (22), Balroop Singh Bhogal (23) and Gaurav Garg (23) all students of Chandigarh Group of Colleges at Landran. While an NRI couple Rupesh (35) and his wife Kavita (32) ferrying the Volvo bus, also died. The car and the bus collided after the car hit the bus from the driver side. The collision was so strong that bus jumped and overturned in the air about ten feet high. Within two minutes after landing on the road, the car caught fire. As a result three students travelling in it died on the spot while the bus passengers got injured.