The guilt of an accused should be proved beyond reasonable doubt by the prosecution
Jessica Lal Murder Case
Jessica Lal, a bartender was shot by Manu Sharma on April 29,1999 in Delhi after she refused to serve him a drink after the closing hours.
In the ensuing trial, Manu Sharma and a number of others were acquitted on 21 February 2006.Following intense media and public pressure, the prosecution appealed and the Delhi High Court conducted proceedings on a fast track with daily hearings conducted over 25 days. The trial court judgment was overturned, and Manu Sharma was found guilty of having murdered Lal. He was sentenced to life imprisonment on 20 December 2007.
The party submitted that the Trial Judge had committed an error in acquittingthe accused and the High Court being an Appellate Court is fully justified in re-analysing the evidence and convicting the appellants and awarding appropriate sentence.
Whether the impugned order of the High Court imposing punishment when the trial Court acquitted all the accused in respect of the charges levelled against them is sustainable?
In the light of the above discussion, on 19 April 2010 the court held that the prosecution has established its case beyond doubt against the appellants and were in agreement with the conclusion arrived at by the High Court.