LIST OF DATES: TAMPERING OF EVIDENCE
|The horrific and infamous incident of fire occurred at Uphaar Cinema Green Park, New Delhi, while the matinee show of film “Border” was being screened. This resulted in death of 59 patrons due to asphyxia and injuries to over 100 patrons sitting in the balcony.
|Initially the investigations was conducted by Delhi Police Crime Branch. Later the investigation was transferred to CBI
|The CBI registered a case bearing No. RC-3 (S)/97/SIC.IV/New Delhi
|Charge Sheet was filed in the aforementioned case against 16 persons named as accused.
|In a petition filed by AVUT ,the Hon’ble High Court directed the trial court to frame charges or otherwise by 16th October 2000.
|The Ld. Additional Sessions Judge framed charges against all 16 persons. Out of which 9 were charged under Section 304 IPC and 7 accused including Sushil Ansal & Gopal Ansal under section 304A, 337, 338 r/w 36 IPC and Section 14 of the Cinematograph Act and H S Panwar, Surinder Dutt (DFS) Shyam Sunder Sharma, ND Tiwari (MCD) & S N Dandona (PWD) u/s 304A, 337, 338 r/w 36 IPC.
|AVUT v/s Govt of NCT of Delhi & Ors 2002 (63) DRJ 461 (DB)
“Trial court shall hold trial of Sessions Case
“Trial court shall also take expeditious steps to
|During the trial before the Ld. Additional Sessions Judge while the examination of PW 33 Mr. T S Sharma ADO Delhi Fire Service was being recorded a letter dated 28th November 1996 written by V K Nagpal Vice President Ansal Properties & Industries Ltd to Delhi Fire Service was found half torn from the judicial file. Thereafter under the directions of the Ld Trial Court Judicial file of the case was subjected to scrutiny. On Scrutiny of the Judicial file it was noticed by the learned Public Prosecutor that several important documents seized by the investigating agency during the course of investigation and filed along with the charge sheet were missing from the record of the case. Some other documents had been tampered with and/or mutilated or defaced by tearing off a portion or by staining with ink.
|The Ld. Public Prosecutor, CBI moved an application and drew the attention of the trial court to the above fact. In turn the trial court apprised the learned District & Sessions Judge, Delhi.
|The learned Public Prosecutor sought permission from the trial court to lead secondary evidence in respect of the missing documents and the documents which had been tampered. The Spl PP Submitted the detailed list of documents .
|The above application was allowed by the trial court and the prosecution was permitted to lead secondary evidence with regard to the missing and tampered documents.
|An affidavit was filed by IO R S Khatri of the main case enclosing the photocopy of the tampered documents stating that these documents were referred during the course of proceedings in the court of Ld. Committal Magistrate as well as before Hon’ble court of ASJ.
|AVUT filed an application before the Ld. ASJ, Mamta Sehgal, under section 439(2) of code of criminal procedure seeking the cancellation of bail granted to the accused persons namely Sushil Ansal, Gopal Ansal & H S Panwar with regards to missing documents from the court records.
|Pursuant to the orders of the Ld. District & Session Judge, an enquiry was conducted by the learned Additional Sessions Judge in which Ld. ASJ held that Dinesh Chandra Sharma the then Ahlmad was found responsible for the missing documents, tearing of documents as well as sprinkling of ink on some documents as he was the custodian of the Judicial record.
|The Ld. ASJ Mamta Sehgal disposed of the application of AVUT with following observation :
“I find that the case is at the fag end and only Investigating officer remains to be examined so at this fag end it would not be appropriate to cancel the bail granted to the above three accused persons”
|The report of the enquiry officer Shri. S. C. Malik, the Ld. ASJ concluded that the Ahlmad of the Court, Dinesh Chandra Sharma, was prima facie guilty of causing the documents forming part of the judicial record of the case to disappear or to be mutilated or torn.
|AVUT filed a Criminal Misc. Petition 2380/2003 before the Hon’ble Delhi High Court challenging the trial court order dt 29.04.03 on the grounds that accused Sushil Ansal, Gopasl Ansal & H S Panwar were primarily responsible for the tampering of judicial records.
|On the basis of the enquiry, DC Sharma was terminated from service by the Ld. Dist & Session Judge.
|AVUT filed a Crl. Misc. 2229/2006 in the Hon’ble High Court under section 482 of the code of criminal Procedure praying for directions for registration of a criminal case against offenders for tampering with documents in the court custody. The notice of this petition was also given to the accused.
|The Hon’ble Delhi High Court while disposing of both the Criminal MC’s No. 2380/2003 & 2229/2006 held:
20. For the reasons stated above, in the result Crl.M.(M) 2380/2003 seeking cancellation of bail of respondents No. 1 to 3 is dismissed and Crl.M.2229/2006 is hereby allowed and the Special Branch of Delhi Police is called upon to register a case under appropriate provisions of law in regard to the incident of removal / tampering with/mutilation of the documents, referred to above, from the judicial record of the Trial Court. After registration of the FIR, investigation shall be entrusted to an officer not below the rank of Assistant Commissioner of Police who will conduct the investigation expeditiously and endeavor to conclude the same within a period of three months from the date of this order……
|In compliance of the aforesaid order and in furtherance to the letter written by the Petitioner an FIR bearing No. 207/2006 came to be registered at Police Station Tilak Marg under section 109/193/201/218/409/120B of the Indian Penal Code.
|Dinesh Chandra Sharma (Court Almad) arrested and sent to police remand. He was remanded for eight days.
|Charge Sheet was filed by EOW Delhi Police against Dinesh Chandra Sharma u/s 109/193/201/218/409/120-B IPC.
|First Supplementary Charge Sheet was filed by EOW Delhi Police enclosing GEQD Report of the documents seized from A Plus Security Agency.
|On a petition filed by AVUT in the Hon’ble High Court in **** for expeditious disposal of the pending trial had directed that :
“…….Taking into account the time estimates given by the learned Counsel themselves, the trial is required to be completed on or before 31st August, 2007……..”
“……The trial will also go on day to day basis commencing 2nd July, 2007…….”
|The trial in the main case, proceeded and resulted in the conviction and sentencing of all 12 accused by the learned Ld. Additional Sessions Judge as per the charges framed. Four accused expired during the trial.
|Second Supplementary Charge Sheet was filed by EOW Delhi Police and following persons were arrayed as accused : Sushil Ansal, Gopal Ansal, H S Panwar, PP Batra Anoop Singh and Col D V Malhotra
|The Ld. ACMM, Patiala House Court, issued summons against all accused persons.
|This summoning order of the Ld ACMM was challenged before Hon’ble High Court by Sushil Ansal, by filing a revision petition No. Rev. 224/08, notice was issued to the Petitioner herein and the Hon’ble High Court did not grant stay
|Gopal Ansal filed a revision petition before the Hon’ble Delhi High Court which was to be listed along with Crl Rev. 224/08 of Sushil Ansal
|The Hon’ble Supreme Court in Criminal Appeal 1452-1455/08 filed by AVUT cancelled the bail of Sushil Ansal & Gopal Ansal stating that:
“So far as Shri Sushil Ansal and Shri Gopal Ansal are concerned, we are of the view that even though they have been convicted under Section 304-A read with Section 36 I.P.C., Section 337 read with Section 36 I.P.C. and Section 338 read with Section 36 I.P.C. and it is well settled that in an appeal against conviction under these sections, the offence being bailable, bail is granted without much ado but, in the facts and circumstances of the present case, especially in view of the conduct of these accused persons after grant of bail during trial, the High Court was not justified in granting bail to them.”
|The Hon’ble High Court in the main Uphaar Trial, while disposing off the appeals preferred by the accused persons, upheld and further reinforced the conviction of Sushil Ansal & Gopal Ansal, convicted for the offence under section 304A, 337, 338 r/w 36 IPC and Section 14 of the Cinematograph Act. That the conviction of Accused H S Panwar was also upheld by the Hon’ble High Court under section 304A, 337, 338 read with section 36 of the Indian Penal Code.
|The Hon’ble Delhi High Court while disposing off the revision petition filed by accused Sushil Ansal , Gopal Ansal, P P Batra & D V Malhotra in Crl Revision 224/2008 held: “This Court does not find merit in any of the petitions. Each of the petitions is accordingly dismissed with cost of Rs.25,000/-.
|Sushil & Gopal Ansal surrender in the court of ACMM. Bail granted with bail bond of Rs 1 Lac and surety of the same amount.
|The High Court Order against the summoning was challenged in the Hon’ble Supreme Court in SLP(Crl)No.1631/2010, which was dismissed.
|Documents supplied to all the accused.
|The Economic Offences Wing of the Delhi Police filed an application under section 437(3) for imposing condition in bail order passed by the Court of Ms. Geetanjali Goel Ld. Link MM.
|Ld ACMM passed an order stating that “…. court is implicitly to obey certain conditions which are embodied in section 437(3) Cr.PC. ….. Even if orders dated 23.04.2010 granting bail to the accused persons does not specifically impose the aforesaid conditions but in any eventuality the accused persons are bound to obey the conditions.”
|AVUT filed W.P. ( Crl) 1355/2013. Hon’ble High Court directed trial court to make endeavor to frame charges by next date of hearing.
|In the above matter the High Court clarified that the Trial Court after hearing all the parties will pass an order on charge within the month of December 2013.
|It is clarified that the learned trial court shall not grant adjournment on the ground of non-availability of counsel for the parties and shall hear the matter on priority basis and try to pass appropriate orders as is stated above, by 15.04.2014.
|3rd Supplementary Charge Sheet filed by EOW , Delhi Police.
|The Hon’ble Supreme Court pronounced its verdict in Crl. Appeal No.597/2010 upholding the judgement of High Court & Trial Court. However, there was a dissent w.r.t sentencing and the matter was referred to a Three Judge Bench.
|Charges framed against all 7 accused u/s 409/109/201/120B IPC.
|The following accused filed a Criminal Revision Petition against the order framing charges in the Sessions court:
1. Sushil Ansal : Crl. Revision Petition141/2014
2. Gopal Ansal : Crl. Revision Petition13/2014
3. Anoop Singh : Crl. Revision Petition136/2014
4. D V Malhotra : Crl. Revision Petition127/2014
|State filed a Transfer Petition ( Crl) No’s 55-58 /2015 in the High Court for transfer of Criminal Revision No’s 141,13,136 & 127/2014 filed by 4 accused pending before the Addl . Sessions Judge , Patiala House Court.
|The Hon’ble Supreme Court awarded 2 year sentence to Sushil Ansal & Gopal Ansal . However, if they pay Rs.30 crores each, i.e. Rs.60 crores, then the sentence will stand reduced to the period already undergone . The said amount by way of a demand draft to be paid to the Chief Secretary of Delhi Government for setting up a new trauma centre .
HS Panwar was awarded 2year sentence . However, if he pays Rs.10 lakhs for the Trauma Centre ,then the sentence will stand reduced to the period already undergone
|Hon’ble High Court while transferring all the above petitions held that:
“The afore-stated Criminal Revision Petitions be listed before this Bench on 31.03.2016 for hearing and disposal in accordance with law, subject to obtaining necessary orders from Hon’ble the Chief Justice.
With the above directions, the transfer petitions are allowed and disposed of accordingly.”
|In a Review Petition (Crl) No. 712-714 / 2015 filed by AVUT & CBI .Hon’ble Supreme Court maintained the period undergone for Suhil Ansal with fine of Rs 30 Crores and Gopal Ansal was awarded a sentence of one year Imprisonment with a fine of Rs 30 Crore.
|Hon’ble High Court Upheld the charges framed u/s 409/109/201/120B IPC by Ld CMM.
|AVUT filed a Petition CRL M.C No. 243/2018 Under Article 227 of the Constitution of India r/w 482 Cr PC for Speedy Trial and day to day hearing of the case titled State v/s Dinesh Chandra Sharma & Ors pending the court of Ld. CMM Patiala House Court.
|The Hon’ble High Court in Crl No. 243/2018 directed the Trial Court to complete the entire proceedings in the case with pronouncement of judgement by 30.11.2018.
|The Hon’ble Supreme Court dismissed SLP 9496/2018 filed by accused Anoop Singh Challenging the order of High Court upholding the charges in Crl revision Petition 262/2016.
|The Hon’ble High Court in Crl 243/2018 directed to fix at least three dates of hearing in the matter per week and complete the trial and pronounce the judgement by 15.07.2019.
|Sushil Ansal, Gopal Ansal, D C Sharma ( Ahlmad of the Court), PP Batra ( Employee of API) & Anoop Singh ( Chairman of A Plus Security) convicted u/s 120B/409/201. The other two accused D V Malhotra & H S Panwar expired pending trial.
|All convicts are sentenced to 7 years simple imprisonment. Ansal to pay compensation of Rs 2,25,00,000/- ( Rs Two Crore twenty five lakhs )each & rest to pay Rs 3,00,000/- (Rs Three Lakhs )each .
Total Number of witnesses: 43
Prosecution Witness Concluded on: 06.04.2021
Statement u/s 313 Cr PC Concluded on: 28.06.2021
Defence witnesses concluded on: 25.08.2021
Final Arguments commenced on: 27.08.2021
Final Arguments concluded on ; 07.10.2021