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Aarushi-Hemraj murder case: Trial court judge acted like a ‘film director’, says Allahabad HC

Justice AK Mishra said Additional Sessions Judge Shyam Lal had tried to ‘thrust coherence amongst facts’ that were scattered.

In its judgment acquitting Rajesh and Nupur Talwar in the twin murder cases of their daughter Aarushi and domestic help Hemraj on Thursday, the Allahabad High Court has reprimanded the trial court judge in Ghaziabad for using “fallacious analogy” while convicting the couple.

Additional Sessions Judge Shyam Lal had sentenced the Talwars to life imprisonment in November 2013. In their order on Thursday, Justice BK Narayana and AK Mishra of the Allahabad High Court said there was not enough evidence to hold the Talwars guilty in the murder cases.

Justice Mishra said the trial court judge had “prejudged things in his own fashion”, before passing the judgment. The judge also likened the trial court judge to a film director for trying to “thrust coherence amongst facts inalienably scattered here and there, but not giving any coherence to the idea as to what in fact happened”.

“The learned trial judge took evidence and the circumstances of the case for granted, and tried to solve it like a mathematical puzzle when one solves a given question and then takes something for granted in order to solve that puzzle and question,” Mishra said in his judgment. “But the point is that the learned trial judge cannot act like a maths teacher who is solving a mathematical question by analogy after taking certain figure for granted.”

Mishra said it was not right to base the entire reasoning solely on guess work, and give a concrete shape to such an assumption. The trial judge had been unmindful of the basic tenets of law and its applicability, the justice said.

“It can by no means be denied that the trial judge, perhaps out of extra zeal and enthusiasm and on the basis of self perception, adopted partial and parochial approach in giving vent to his own emotional belief and conviction and thus tried to give concrete shape to his own imagination stripped of just evaluation of evidence and facts of this case,” he said in the 273-page judgment.

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