The Court cannot Interfere with an Acquittal Judgment Simply Because Two Conclusions are Possible. Accused Being A Favourite Child of Law Does not Mean He Can be Granted Unwarranted Favour.

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The Court cannot Interfere with an Acquittal Judgment Simply Because Two Conclusions are Possible. Accused Being A Favourite Child of Law Does not Mean He Can be Granted Unwarranted Favour.

The Supreme Court in a recent jdugment has held that when an accused is acquitted by a court in a criminal case, double presumption is attached to him: one being innocent until proven guilty, second he was found not guilty by the court. Hence, such an accused person carries double presumption of innocence and in any case against such an acquittal judgment shall not be interfered with lightly and readily. The courts must apply conscious mind and analyseย  in depth whether the acquittal judgment is perverse, arbitrary in nature, based on none-reading or mis-reading of the evidence or it carries miscarriage of justice. If the acquittal judgment is such, only then a court can interfere with it, otherwise the courts must show restraint while adjudicating upon a case against an acquittal.

The SC also analysed the phrase “Accused is a favourite child of law” and answered the question why it is not coined contra-wise that a “Victim is a favourite child of law”. The Court held that this phrase that an accused is favourite child of law is based on the prudence and philosophy that it is better to acquit a hundred criminals than to convict one innocent. The society can afford to spare many criminals than penalising one innocent person.

The Court also reminded us that this principle is not unfettered. The SC , however, clarified that this does not mean to imply that the courts should grant an unwarranted favour, indulgence or preferential treatment of any sort whatsoever to the accused. This principle is coined just for the safe and evenhandedย  administration of justice.

The SC also clarified that there might be certain cases where two conclusions can be reached at against an acquittal judgment, but the courts cannot interfere with an acquittal judgmentย  on this ground alone as double presumption of innocence is attached with the accused. Possibility of drawing two different conclusions is not a ground per se for interference in an acquittal judgment. It must be corroborated by other grounds or reasons as well for interference.

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