A judge’s duty is to discover the facts in a single deposition procedure that is part of the justice delivery system. In order to substantiate the narrative, the truth must be scrutinized, examined, and proof must be provided. A dying declaration is a statement made by a person who is no longer present to help the court in deciding the evidence that, whether taken together or separately, constitutes the crime in which he was a victim. More importantly, the importance and weight of such a version are critical in reaching a decision regarding the incident and determining criminal responsibility. It creates a dichotomy in the application of the judicial mind that the same argument should either be considered or can raise doubts about the criminal’s punishment. The study of textual law and the courts’ interpretations sheds light on the question that must be objectively considered in a given case. This brief paper aims to assess the judicial appropriateness of a dying decree and its rational meaning by Indian courts in order to determine the offender’s guilt
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Since the dawn of time, the Dying Declaration has been an essential tool in the administration of justice. The basic idea behind these types of facts is that they are claims made in the throes of death when every promise of this existence has disappeared when any object of deception has been silenced, and then the brain is elicited by the most urgent issues to verbalize the reality; a circumstance so grim and therefore legal is treated by the law as constituting an obligation necessary to be punished. Made binding by a positive oath administered in a court of justice.
The grimness of inevitable death is believed to be the most powerful proof of the truthfulness of a dying person’s declaration about the causes and conditions leading to death, which is new in his mind or uncontaminated or discolored by something other than saying the truth, and for which specific holiness can be equal to a death sentence.
Today’s man is enslaved by a heartless consumerist and materialistic society, which tempts him with all of its enticements. The cutting-edge man seems to have succumbed to an unquenchable desire for wealth, power, and influence. The rapid advancement in a civilization, as well as mechanical and materialistic advancements, also resulted in a lack of consideration for people’s attitudes. And at the end of their lives, when they are faced with imminent death, people nowadays have a proclivity for saying lies or concealing facts. Promote our legal system’s underlying shortcomings, which have a huge bearing on the suitability or general efficacy of the Dying Declarations. Furthermore, the Dying Declaration, the illegal agency of equity’s great arm, is being exploited to defeat equity’s wishes and has consistently proved unsuccessful.
In a few words, a dying declaration is a formal or verbal assertion of material information made by a deceased person. The Indian Evidence Act of 1872 deals with it in clause (1) of section 32. In addition, it corresponds to the cause of the declarant’s death. The person who records the dying declaration can prove it. A dying declaration isn’t final until all those involved have sent their full names and addresses.
The differences between English and Indian rule:
The declarant may have entertained a resolved futile anticipation of death in order for the dying declaration to be admissible under English law, although he may not have to be awaiting imminent death.
There are no such limitations in Indian law. Under Indian law, there is no provision that the maker plans to die prematurely, nor is it limited to murder cases. It must be shown that the author of a dying statement is deceased before it can be recognized. If the creator lives, the evidence may be used in court to back up or refute his claims.
The following is the text of Section 32(1):
- A statement may be presented verbally as well as in prose. In the case of Emperor vs. Abdullah, however, it was decided that behavior was crucial as a dying statement.
- The argument must provide
- the cause of death and
- the transaction’s circumstances.
- as a consequence of which a person died
The deceased’s declaration to his wife that he was going to the accused to receive money from him was admissible under section 32 in Pakala Narayan Swamy vs. Emperor, AlR 1939.
FIR as a dying declaration-
An injured person filed a police report and later died. It was found to be significant as a dying statement in K.Ramchanda Reddy vs. Public Prosecution.
3) The person must die when making the statement—if death is not the outcome, his statement is inadmissible/as a death claim, although it may be used to corroborate or refute his evidence under Section 157. It may be used in court to corroborate testimony under Sections 6 and 8.
4) The deceased’s cause of death must be questioned.
5) It is not appropriate to anticipate death.
6) Regardless of the type of the proceeding—civil or criminal—where the death of the person deceased is in doubt.
The language of dying declaration
The reliability of a dying declaration registered in the declarant’s native language is increased. It should be reported as closely as possible in the declarant’s own vocabulary and grammar. The death of a lady was attributed to 100 percent burn injuries in Deepak Baliram Bajaj vs the State of Maharashtra, and the dying declaration was registered in the hospital by a constable. The Special Executive Magistrate posed questions in Sindhi, which were answered in Sindhi before being translated into Hindi and reported in Marathi by the constable. The declaration was clarified to the declarant in Hindi rather than Sindhi. The Supreme Court ruled that a sentence based entirely on a dying declaration was unconstitutional.
- A) Who has the authority to document a Dying declaration?
Any individual, even a police officer, may report a dying declaration. If it is registered by a Judicial Magistrate, it would have more strength and durability. The Magistrate in the case of State of Uttar Pradesh vs. Shishupal Singh recorded a dying declaration that was not signed by the deceased, did not provide the date and time of writing, and the prosecutor declined to say why the deceased was unable to sign it. It was determined that a dying assertion laced with so many questionable conditions put doubt on its validity and that relying on it for conviction was risky. The Delhi High Court held in Ram Singh vs. Delhi Administration that a clear and corroborated dying statement cannot be disregarded only because it was registered by a police officer.
- Whether a dying declaration is admissible – According to Sant Gopal vs. State of U.P.1995 Cr.L.J., evidence of a dying declaration is admissible not only against the person who caused the suicide but also against all those who are involved in the death (AIR.)
In several decisions, the Supreme Court has defined the rules guiding declaration of death, as may be summarized as follows:
- There is no code of law or prudence in place to prohibit the death decree from being carried out without proof.
- ii) Unless the court agrees the dying assertion is genuine and voluntary, it will convict without further proof.
iii) The court would closely examine the dying statement to ensure that it was not swayed by tutoring, persuasion, or imagination. The deceased was in a good enough state to make the announcement, and he had plenty of time to observe and locate the attackers.
- iv) If a dying announcement seems to be dubious, it can not be followed up on without further proof.
- v) In cases where the deceased was asleep and did not make a dying statement, the testimony is to be dismissed.
- vi) A dying statement tainted by infirmity cannot be seen as a justification for prosecution.
vii) A dying statement is not to be discarded only because it lacks specific information about the case. Similarly, only because a statement is brief does not mean it is false; on the contrary, the statement’s briefness ensures its validity.
viii) Legal advice is generally requested by the court to determine if the deceased was in a proper mental state to make the dying statement. Where the deceased was fit and conscious before making the dying announcement, however, the medical perspective cannot prevail.
- ix) The dying declaration cannot be used in the prosecution’s view varies from the dying declaration version.
A Case Analysis of Pakala Narayana Swami vs. King Emperor
The appellant has been charged with murder. The deceased’s cut body was found in a suitcase in a train car on March 23, 1937. The court relied on a statement written by the deceased to his wife on March 20, 1937, in which he said that he had received a letter instructing him to go to the home of the accused in order to recover money owed to him and that he intended to do soIn response to the question of its admissibility. The Privy Council said, “The case was rightly admitted under Section 32(1) of the Evidence Act.” For admissibility under the provision, the case must be presented before the cause of death has arisen, or before the deceased has every reason to expect to be killed. General manifestations of fear or suspicion, whether aimed at a victim or not, that are not clearly connected to the cause of death are not admissible.
Statements made by the deceased that he was going to the location where he was killed, or his explanation for going there, or that he was going to see a certain person, or that he had been invited by such person to see him, could both be circumstances of the transaction, whether or not the victim was identified. Regardless of whether the victim was known or not, statements made by the deceased that he was going to the place where he was killed, or his reason for going there, or that he was going to see a certain person, or that he had been invited by such person to see him, may all be circumstances of the transaction. Circumstances can be related to the actual injury, but in the case of chronic poisoning, they may be attributed to days that are well removed from the day of the fatal dose. It’s worth remembering that the exchange’s terms ended in the declarant’s demise.
Since the criterion for the evidence’s admissibility is that the cause of which in this case is the cause of the deceased’s death, is called into question, it is not sufficient to have a reported event other than that the declarant’s death was eventually induced. On March 21 or 22, the victim was murdered, and his body was discovered in a suitcase that had been obtained on behalf of the accused. The deceased’s declaration on March 20 or 21 that he was going to the accused’s home to meet an individual, the accused’s wife, seems to be a plain assertion as to some of the specifics of the transaction that led to his death.”
However, various factors, such as the psychological state of the person issuing the statement, the mental health of the individual accounting for the dying declaration, and the encompassing circumstances of the dying introduction, can’t keep the danger of desecration of dying declarations at bay. The common and customary human errors in keeping an eye on things and communicating all that needs to be communicated to others, especially outsiders, and so on. When these realities are considered, along with the circumstances discussed above—identified with the dying declarations’ diminishing confidence—it can be confidently and carefully concluded that the Dying Declarations will be accepted in proof after due validation and assurance of the encompassing conditions causing the dying declarations. Courts and even investigating organizations can no longer grant consecrated status to dying declarations, base case discoveries solely on their premise, or decide the fate of cases and judicial processes solely on their premise.