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Back Ground for the Moot Proposition

Under Hindu philosophy marriage is a sacrament and not a contract. The bride and
bridegroom unite to live in togetherness not only till life but for seven births. Marriages are made
in heavens and couples unite on the earth, in order to love and respect each other, on equal
footing. Caring for both and the family. They live in oneness, two bodies but one soul.

Since times immemorial it has been considered that performing marriage of a daughter is
a pious act; sincere efforts are made to find a suitable boy of a family equivalent in status, where
she can get same treatment as in the parental family. Similar precautions are taken from the
bridegrooms side.Wedding is performed by both the families with joy and happiness and two
families also unite.

It has been customary to give presents to the daughter of all such articles, things, assets,
ornaments, jewellery, clothes etc. to make her living comfortable in the in-laws family. Presents
are also given to the bridegroom, members and relatives of the bridegroom.

With passage of time instead of voluntary act of giving, it became business and both the
parties started pre-settling and many a times more than capacity of the brides parents resulting
in Dowry. It was noticed that on non-fulfillment of the demands from bridegroom side, the
daughter is ill treated, domestic violence is caused and it results in death. Hence Dowry
Prohibition Act was enacted to remedy this social evil.
This moot problem is framed to highlight this evil and to spread awareness in the youth
to eradicate this evil, which is a black spot in marital life.

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1. Mr. Suresh Goyal, aged about 25 years, son of Shri Dinesh Goyal an industrialist and
high profile person living in Goyal House a palatial mansion having bar, swimming
pool, tennis court, small film screening auditorium, number of classic cars and gadgates.
They lead a posh life. Shri Suresh Goyal was studying for MBA in a well known
2. Miss Sharda Gupta was aged about 24 years, daughter of Shri Vikram Gupta, a
businessman, having chain of departmental stores, leading aristocratic life, was also
studying in MBA in the same College as that of Shri Suresh Goyal. Both were in the
same class. Miss Sharda Gupta stood first, was a gold medalist. Shri Suresh Goyal also
passed but in Second Division. Both fell in love. Both families knew each other and Shri
Dinesh Goyal and Shri Vikram Gupta being members of the Ashok Club use to visit
house of each other and have drinks.
3. Shri Dinesh Goyal after passing out of his son, who was managing his Mill, was in
search of a suitable match for his son. He showed many girls, but Shri Suresh Goyal on
one prestext or the other did not consent. Ultimately Shri Suresh Goyal suggested his
father to talk to Shri Vikram Gupta for his daughter Miss Sharda Gupta, his classmate.
Shri Dinesh Goyal having closely known to Shri Vikram Gupta readily accepted, had a
talk with Shri Vikram Gupta. Both agreed for the marriage. However Shri Dinesh Goyal
demanded dowry of substantial value, commensurate with his social status and to spend a
minimum of Rs. 1 Crore on the wedding apart from the dowry. In order to fulfill the
desire of his sweet daughter, he accepted all the terms and conditions.
4. The marriage was performed with pomp and show on 17.07.2012 and the agreed dowry
was paid to the entire satisfaction of the Goyal family.
5. On 18th July, 2012 Wedding reception was arranged by Shri Dinesh Goyal on a grand and
lavish scale, with the presence of more than 5000 persons including Ministers, Senior
officials, industrialists, film celebrities, social workers and persons of eminence. Cocktail
party with best brands of wine, delicious vegetarian and non-vegetarian delicacies with
beautiful ladies to serve, which continued till mid night at Rambagh Palace front lawn
which is normally not given for marriage. Venue was illuminated. Guests stayed in
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Rambagh Palace, Jai Mahal Palace and other five star hotels and were provided all
facilities. 10 Chartered flights arrived with guests also in normal flights. Guests were not
only entertained but were given costly gifts. The couple left for honeymoon to
Switzerland and Other European Countries for a fortnight.
6. The royal wedding was a talk of the town. Commissioner of Income tax got conducted
survey u/s. 133A(5) wherein photographs of wedding ceremony, venue, etc was
videographed, statements of event manager, decorater, electrician, caterers, taxi suppliers
etc. were recorded. Photographs and Video recording showed assets and items given in
dowry. The investigation cell of the Income-tax Department computed expenditure of Rs.
5 Crores by Shri Gupta and Rs. 7.5 Crores by Shri Goyal. On recording of statements and
examination of books of account it revealed that recorded expenditure by each is Rs. 1
Crore only. They stated that expenditure computed by the investigation wing is highly
excessive, unreal and actual expenditure incurred by each is Rs. 2.5 Crores only. They
admitted that balance of the expenditure is from undisclosed sources and they would pay
tax and interest, subject to non-levy of penalty. Both filed their returns of income and
declared undisclosed income as per their statements and paid tax and interest. However,
on scrutiny assessment u/s. 143(3) the Assessing Officer made addition of the differential
amount as per investigation cell and levied tax, interest with notice for penalty u/s.
271(1)(c) of the Act. Both filed appeals which are pending.
7. Mrs. Sharda Goyal did not receive proper treatment from her mother-in-law, sister-in-law
as also the father-in-law. Smt. Shalini Goyal was continuously making dowry demands
for Mercedes Benz Classic Car and for a fixed deposit of Rs. 1 Crore. However a fixed
deposit of Rs. 25 lacs was given in the name of Mrs. Sharda Goyal. Treatment by all the
family members including Shri Dinesh Goyal and his wife Smt. Shalini Goyal, became
hard and started ill-treatment with the daughter-in-law. With mental disturbance and noncongenial atmosphere Mrs. Sharda Goyal could not conceive. Her relations with her
husband became strained. Her mother-in-law threatened to give birth to a baby boy,
within one year, else she would be thrown out and she would re-marry her son. A
compromise was arrived with the intervention of family friends and Smt. Shalini Goyal
tendered written apology.

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8. By grace of god Mrs. Sharda Goyal gave birth to a baby girl, but the goyal family was not
happy and was cursing Mrs. Sharda Goyal. No usual ceremonies and festivities were
organized. She was cursed, rebuked and sent to parental house. Mrs. Sharda Goyal was
maintaining a daily diary noting every incident minutely.
9. On or about 20.05.2015 Shri Suresh Goyal reached his in-laws house and opologised for
mis-treatment of his family. He sought consent of Sharda and she returned to Goyal
Palace. But relationship between Sharda Goyal and her husband continued to be
estranged due to demand of dowry and excessive drinking of Suresh Goyal who started
abusing and beating in the presence of servants.
10. Goyal family planned and accordingly Mr. Dinesh Goyal purchased on 24.5.2015 organo
phosphrus sold under the trade name of NUVAN from Shri Sanjay Kumar PW-1 a
shopkeeper on the pretext that he required the same to kill the flies. On 25.5.2015, the
fateful day, Smt. Sharda Goyal, her mother-in-law forcibly administered poison to the
deceased to kill her. Her son also held the body of the deceased physically and forced her
to drink. During the course of administration of poison deceased struggled as such
sustained injuries on her face, lips and neck. Shri Surendra Kumar PW-2, a servant heard
the shrieks and cries of the deceased and extreme weeping of her child. The deceased was
crying Give me salty water. I do not want to die.. Two other servants Shri Ved Prakash
PW-3, and Shri Om Prakash PW-4, reached on the spot and smelt poisonous odour in the
room. The articles in the room were scattered. The deceased was lying on the bed having
bruises and contusions on her face. Water was splashed on the bed as well as on the floor
of the room. The clothes of the deceased were also drenched. Shri Om Prakash, PW-4,
requested Shri Dinesh Goyal and suresh Goyal to take the deceased to the hospital
immediately. However the accused replied that there was no necessity therefore and that
deceased would be all right very soon. In the meantime Shri Anil Kumar PW-5, and Shri
Shiv Kumar PW-6, relatives of the deceased also arrived. They noticed the condition of
the room and also the precarious and deteriorating condition of the deceased. When they
asked the accused what had happened, he reported that it was his private life and they
need not bother. The accused refused to take the deceased to the hospital on the pretext
that nothing had happened and he himself being father-in-law could look after her. PWs 5
and 6 also smelt poisonous odour in the room. Deceased was crying that she did not want
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to die and she be saved. On being asked what had happened, she raised her hand towards
the accused Shri Dinesh Goyal and Mrs. Shalini Goyal.
11. Om Prakash, PW-4 informed the police at about 4.30 a.m.. On that Biru Ahmad, PW-7
entered the information in the daily diary and proceeded towards the spot. He found the
deceased lying on the bed in an unconscious position. Dr. O. P. Choudhary, PW-8,
examined the deceased at about 6 a.m. and noted the patient was semi-conscious with
history of consumption of poisonous substance. He also noted (i) contusion reddish in
colour over the lateral side of her right eye brow with swelling present of the size of 7
cm. x 5 cm. and (ii) both lips were swollen. It was also noted that complete examination
of the body could not be done because patient was in serious condition. B.P. was not
recordable and Pupils bilateral circular, pin point not reacting to light. PW-8 Doctor O. P.
Choudhary administered the initial treatment. He carried out Gastric Lavage first with
saline solution and then with ordinary tap water. Thereafter he referred the deceased at
S.M.S. Hospital, Jaipur which was informed to the police. She died at the Hospital.
12. Post mortem was conducted by Dr. Piyush Kapila, PW-9 in association with Dr. V. K.
Mishra, Assistant Professor Forensic Medicine. As to the cause of death it was opined
that the deceased had died due to asphyxia secondary to the organi phosphorus poison.
Following ante-mortem injuries were found on the person of the deceased :

10 cm x 6 cm bruise on the right periorbital area with swelling of right eye lid
with two contentric nail scratches abrasions, one on forehead and other on upper
eye lid. Bluish in colour;


9 cm x 4 cm big contusion, bluish in colour, on intraorbital area and check on left



cm x cm contusion on the inner side of lower lip towards left side mid line
with respect to left lateral incisor (lower). Blue in colour;


8 cm x 7 cm abraded contusion over chin and submental area in midline. Bluish in



11 cm x 5 cm multiple small abrasions over neck and right of upper chest in front
3 cm lateral to sterno calvicular joint.


10 cm x 4 cm contusion in infra-axilary area in mid axillary line. Blue in colour.

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7 cm x 5 cm large purple coloured pach over dorsum of right hand with multiple
needle prick marks (latrogenic).

13. On coming to know that his daughter has been taken to Hospital, Shri Virkam Gupta PW10, father of a deceased came to the hospital on the same he also lodged a report at the
Police Station mentioning the harassment caused by the three accused to the deceased for
dowry. He stated that all the three accused namely Shri Dinesh Goyal, Smt. Shalini Goyal
and Shri Suresh Goyal had forcibly administered poison with intention to kill his
daughter for non-fulfillment of further demand of dowey. Death had occurred due to maltreatment by the accused and action be taken against them. FIR No. 466 of 2015 was
registered under sections 498A, 304B, 306/34 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860.
14. The investigation revealed that the accused had purchased organi phosphorus sold under
the trade name of NUVAN from Sanjay Kumar, PW-1, a shopkeeper on the pretext that
he required the same to kill the flies. It was also alleged by the prosecution that on the
fateful day three accused in collusion forcibly administered poison to the deceased in
order to kill her. After death search, police found the diary which was exhibited and
relied for domestic violence & dowry demand. Charges under Sections 498A and 304B
read with Section 34 of IPC were framed against the accused persons. Charges were also
framed under the Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961 for demand of Car and Fixed Deposit.
15. All the three accused adjured the guilt and pleaded innocene. The prosecution in the
course of trial examined above stated witnesses. Accused Shri Dinesh Goyal in his
statement under section 313 Cr. PC did not deny the factum of the deceased having died
due to poison. It was stated by him that the deceased had disclosed to him that she had
consumed some drugs and had asked him to give her salty water. Deceased was under
convulsion due to some drug. He had given her water to vomit. He firstly gave water to
her and then took her to S.M.S. Hospital and called Dr. O.P. Chowdhary. Deceased was a
sensitive lady. His relationship with the deceased was cordial. He examined 3 witnesses
in defence, who stated that Shalini Goyal was happy in Goyal House and their relations
inters were cordial and she was treated as a daughter.

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Finding of the trial Court :

The trial court acquitted the mother-in-law on the plea there is no direct evidence and she
is woman. Shri Suresh Goyal was also acquitted being youth of 30 years. However, convicted
the father-in-law for commission of offence under section 302 IPC and awarded imprisonment
for 7 years with no fine.

Finding of the Rajasthan High Court :

State as well as Vikram Gupta filed appeal before the Rajasthan High Court pleading life
imprisonment for Dinesh Goyal and imprisonment for 7 years for Smt. Shalini Goyal and for 5
years for Shri Suresh Goyal. Shri Dinesh Goyal also filed an appeal against conviction. The High
Court acquitted the respondent Dinesh Goyal on the ground that the circumstances are not of
conclusive nature. Chain of circumstances is not complete so as to unerringly point to the guilt of
the accused.
Though Dr. O.P. Choudhary stated that injuries indicated positively the administration of
poisonous substance forcibly to the victim, however, he could not say whether the deceased had
consumed the poison herself to commit suicide. Similar was the statement of Dr. Piyush Kapila.
His statement was also disbelieved on the ground that he could not rule out the possibility of the
victim committing suicide by herself. The first information given to the police was that the
victim had consumed some poisonous substance. Initially the offence under sections 306 and
498A was registered. Dr. Chaudhary had noticed only two injuries on the person of the deceased.
However, the injuries increased from 2 to 6 in the post mortem report submitted by Dr. Piyush
Kapila. The possibility of the injuries could be caused by convulsions was not ruled out.
Possibility of injuries caused by convulsions is strengthened from the fact that number of ante morten injuries had increased from the period the victim was examined initially and the post
morten was conducted. The prosecution has failed to prove that poison was in possession of the
accused. Since the trial court has not convicted the accused under section 498A or section 304-B
read with section 34, IPC, it could not be said that the deceased was being ill-treated or harassed
with cruelty on account of dowry. The evidence of shopkeeper Sanjay Kumar from whose shop
accused allegedly purchased poison, is not reliable. Accused would not choose poison like
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organo phosphorous i.e., NUVAN a pesticide which has a pungent smell like kerosene to kill
the victim. He would have purchased better poison. The accused had administered salty water in
order to enable the victim to vomit. This indicates that gastric lavage was carried out by the
accused to save the deceased. He had accompanied her to hospital. The victim did not name the
accused as responsible for administering poison and there was no occasion for her merely lifting
her hand towards the accused. The clothes of the deceased have not been produced. When two
views are possible one favourable to the accused is required to be adopted. Hence conviction is
set aside.

Appeal before the Supreme Court :

The State as well as Shri Vikram Gupta filed appeal against all the three accused setting
aside acquittal and non-levy of maximum imprisonment with fine as also awarding exemplary
cost all throughout. The appellants have requested that accused Dinesh Goyal should be awarded
imprisonment for life and his wife and son for seven years rigorous imprisonment. Domestic
violence be deprecated and the police should be asked why no charge was framed.
Notice issued by the Hon'ble Supreme Court to show cause why appeals be not accepted and
imprisonment enhanced.
The participants are advised to submit memorials by 15 th August, 2016 and the appeal is
to be finally heard on 3.9.2016.

1.Sections 302, 304B, 306, 34, 498A, 201 etc. of I.P.C.
2.Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961.
3. Domestic Violence Act.
4. Evidence Act.
5. The Criminal Procedure Code.
6. Income Tax Act.
7. Constitution of India.
8. Other relevant laws.
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