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SC Takes Lenient View Of Honour Killing

PTI 02 Aug 2011, 12:23:45 IST

New Delhi, August 01: Noting that the incident was 18 years old, the Supreme Court has refused to enhance the five years imprisonment punishment for three persons accused of strangulating to death their sister and her boy friend Gurnam Singh in Punjab's Ferozpur district.
A bench of justices VS Sirpurkar and TS Thakur refused to interfere with the Punjab and Haryana High Court order reducing the life sentence to five years as accused Nishan Singh and two other brothers could not control their anger after their sister Paramjit Kaur was found in a compromising position with her boy friend Gurnam Singh.

”It was obvious that there was a sexual intercourse with deceased Paramjit Kaur. Again, we are not satisfied with the explanation offered by the prosecution for delay in sending the copy of the FIR to the Magistrate on May 16, 1993, at 10.30 pm whereas the same was registered in the morning at 9.15 am.
“We do not find any reason to differ with the conclusion arrived at by the High Court that the offence was committed due to grave and sudden provocation and would fall under first explanation to Section 300 IPC and would amount to culpable homicide not amounting to murder,” the apex court said.

The order comes in the backdrop of the recent Supreme Court suggestion for treating all honour killings as “rarest of rare” crime and death penalty be awarded to the accused.

The bench rejected the argument of the state's counsel Kuldip Singh, that the five-year sentence was ridiculously low as even according to the high court it was a case of honour killing.

”The argument is undoubtedly correct. However, considering that the incident in question took place in the year 1993 and thus 18 years have passed.

”Further, considering the fact that the accused persons had not even crossed the age of 25 years at the time when the incident took place and considering the fact that they have already undergone rigorous imprisonment for five years and have come out of jail, we are not inclined to interfere with the quantum of sentence and would choose to dismiss this appeal,” the bench said. PTI