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FACTS

  • In this case, a married woman within 15 months of her marriage committed suicide, leaving behind 2 suicide notes.
  • The complainant, who is the father of the deceased woman filed FIR against her husband, father-in-law, and mother-in-law under Sections 304B, 306, 498A, 406, 506 read with Section 34 IPC and under Sections 3 and 4 of Dowry Prohibition Act.
  • The father-in-law and mother-in-law (respondents before the SC) filed an application for discharge which was rejected by the Sessions Court.
  • The order of Sessions Court was challenged before the High Court that partly allowed the application to the extent that they were discharged of the offence under Section 306 IPC on the ground that there was not enough material to frame charge under Section 306.
  • The appellant/ father of the deceased had filed an appeal before the Supreme Court, challenging the order of the High Court.

SUBMISSIONS

  • The counsel for the appellant referring to Bhupendra vs. State of Madhya Pradesh submitted before the Court that once charges under 304B are framed, the charge under Section 306 cannot be removed because there were suicide notes and statements of witnesses.
  • The counsel for respondent, relying on Gurjit Singh vs. State of Punjab submitted that there are no allegations against respondents in the suicide noted and they are correctly discharged.

ORDER

  • The Supreme Court allowed the appeal and held that respondents no.1 and 2 cannot be discharged from Section 306 when the charges under Section 394B are framed and confirmed.
  • Taking note of Bhupendra vs. State of Madhya Pradesh, the Bench observed that Section 306 has broad applicability and takes Section 304B into its purview and set aside the impugned order.

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