Ponda: Three persons were discharged, on Wednesday, of the offence of stone/bottle pelting on Sanatan Sanstha Ashram at Ramnathi and assault on its seekers.
The Managing Trustee of the Ashram, Virendra Marathe, filed a private criminal complaint in 2009 accusing Sanket Narvekar Jeetendra Sawanth and Vasanth Bhat of pelting stones/bottles at the ashram and assaulting its seekers on various occasions.
However, the Judicial Magistrate First Class Sarika N Faldesai, Ponda, discharged all the three accused holding that “there is no sufficient material to proceed against the accused persons. No case is made out against the accused person that would warrant their prosecution and hence the accused persons are entitled for discharge of the offences punishable under Sections 427, 440 and 323 read with Section 34 of the Indian Penal Code.”
Giving details of the case, Shreekant Nayak, the advocate for the accused, said that the complaint was filed on ground that all the three persons with a common intention tried to assault seekers of Sanatan Sanstha and also pelted stones and bottles on Sanatan Sanstha and damaged its property. “I argued the matter before charge. The JMFC held that there was no ground to proceed with case; there was no incriminating evidence and therefore, the accused were discharged,” he said.
In his complaint, Marathe alleged that on five occasions, the accused pelted stones/bottles and assaulted the seekers. In the first such incident that allegedly took place on November 27, 2009, at 1.30 midnight the accused allegedly pelted glass, soft drink bottles and stones at the ashram. A case was filed with the police, which however, registered it as non-cognisable.
The second such incident allegedly occurred on December 3, 2009. It was alleged that the accused came on their two-wheelers (GA-01-K-0791 and GA-05-C-3368) and threw some glass and cold drink bottles and pelted stones on the Ashram building. The Sanstha allegedly filed a complaint, but the police allegedly did not take any action.
Further, on December 5, 2009, at noon, the same accused pelted stones on labourers working in the ashram. A complaint was filed, but police failed to take action. Again on December 16, 2009, at 6.30 pm two of the above three accused entered the Ashram and threw soda bottles on the Ashram.
When Manjunath Doddamani, a witness in the case, followed them, one of the accused Vasant Bhat abused him and gave him fist blows twice. A complaint was filed at Ponda Police Station, but the police allegedly did not take action.
Again on December 19, 2009, at 4.30 pm the accused entered the Ashram premises from the rear side and pelted stones in which Shreehari Mamledar and Datta Buwa present in the Ashram suffered injuries. This complaint too was allegedly neglected by the Ponda police.
The accused argued that they were falsely implicated.
The court observed that the complainant has not brought out any prima facie case to show the involvement of the accused. “There are no medical certificates or any photographs of the incidents. There are no glass pieces or stones that are attached or produced. It is not known what their common intention was. The complainant mentioned about hurt but there are no any medical certificates in support. On perusing the record, it is seen that all witnesses in the present case are interested witnesses. There are no statements of any independent eye witnesses who had seen the accused persons doing the said act,” the court reasoned out.
Stating that there is no sufficient material to proceed against the accused person and no case is made out against the accused person that would warrant their prosecution, the court said that the accused persons are entitled for discharge. [H]