Prem Sagar Manocha Vs. State (NCT of Delhi)
The Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 - Section 340 , Indian Penal Code,1860 - Section 193
Perjury - Expert Opinion - Appellant all through consistent that as an expert, a definite opinion in the case could be given only if the suspected firearm is available for examination - His opinion that the cartridges appeared to have been fired from different firearms was based on the court's insistence to give the opinion without examining the firearm - It was not even his voluntary, let alone deliberate deposition, before the court - Held that it is unjust, if not unfair, to attribute any motive to the appellant that there was a somersault from his original stand in the written opinion - Even in the written opinion, appellant has clearly stated that a definite opinion in such a situation could be formed only with the examination of the suspected firearm, therefore, there is no somersault or shift in the stand taken by the appellant in the oral examination before court - Impugned proceedings initiated against the appellant under Section 340 of CrPC liable to be quashed.
Perjury - Expert Opinion - Merely because an expert has tendered an opinion while also furnishing the basis of the opinion and that too without being conclusive and definite, it cannot be said that he has committed perjury so as to help somebody - And, mere rejection of the expert evidence by itself may not also warrant initiation of proceedings under Section 340 of CrPC.
The Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 - Section 340
Criminal Procedure Code, 1898, Section 479A(since repealed) - Held that it was mandatory under the pre-amended provision of Section 4789-A of 1898 Code to record a finding after the preliminary inquiry regarding the commission of offence; whereas in the 1973 Code, the expression 'shall' has been substituted by 'may' meaning thereby that under 1973 Code, it is not mandatory that the court should record a finding - What is now required is only recording the finding of the preliminary inquiry which is meant only to form an opinion of the court, and that too, opinion on an offence 'which appears to have been committed', as to whether the same should be duly inquired into.
Topic(s)-Perjury - Expert Opinion - Complaint quashed