MADURAI: The Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court has reduced the life imprisonment awarded to a man to seven years RI in a case of murder in Dindigul district in 2009. The crime followed the victim’s refusal to return Rs 1 to the accused, the balance sum, for three ‘parottas’ sold by him.
A Division bench headed by Justice S Nagamuthu passed the judgment on an appeal by Karuppasamy alias Rajendran.
The Additional Public Prosecutor submitted that one ‘Cheetukkara’ Balu alias Balakrishnan and his son were running a restaurant at K C Patti in Dindigul district. On March 09, 2009, the accused Karuppasamy and his friend came to the hotel for dinner.
As Karuppasamy did not have money, his friend gave him Rs 10 to buy three ‘parottas’. Balakrishnan refused to give the balance Rs 1 to Karuppasamy. He said he would give the sum only to his friend.
A wordy duel ensued. After a short while, Karuppasamy attacked Balakrishnan on his neck with a sickle.
He also bit the victim’s son. Balakrishnan was declared ‘brought dead’ in the hospital, the prosecutor said.
The next day, Karuppasamy was arrested and the Dindigul Principal Sessions Judge later sentenced him to life imprisonment. Against this, Karuppasamy had filed the present appeal.
The bench said the victim should have returned the balance to the accused, but he failed to do so. Examination of three eye witnesses, including the victim’s son and evidence showed that the appellant was the one who caused the death.
However, there was no grudge between the accused and the victim. The death was a result of a sudden quarrel.
Considering that the accused caused only a single cut on Balakrishnan’s neck, which was enough to cause death, and the behaviour and social condition of the 40-year-old appellant, the court was inclined to partly set aside the lower court’s order of life imprisonment under Section 302 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).
However, the accused Karuppasamy should be punished under Section 324 (Voluntarily causing hurt by dangerous weapons or means) of the IPC. Reducing the life sentence, the bench awarded seven years RI to Karuppasamy.