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Buta Singh vs The State Of Punjab (1991)

Case Summary


The case of Buta Singh vs The State Of Punjab (1991) centers around a criminal trial concerning the offense of murder under the Indian Penal Code. Buta Singh, the appellant, was charged with the murder of a woman. The incident occurred under contentious circumstances, leading to Buta Singh's arrest and subsequent trial. The case underwent judicial proceedings in the courts of Punjab, with the trial court ultimately convicting Buta Singh of murder. Dissatisfied with the verdict, Buta Singh appealed against the conviction to the High Court of Punjab.


On March 26, 1991, the High Court of Punjab delivered its judgment in the Buta Singh case. The court carefully reviewed the evidence presented during the trial and scrutinized the testimonies of witnesses and the circumstances surrounding the alleged murder. After thorough examination, the court found discrepancies and inconsistencies in the prosecution's case. Furthermore, it identified lapses in the investigation and raised doubts about the reliability of key pieces of evidence. In light of these shortcomings and the failure of the prosecution to establish guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, the court acquitted Buta Singh of the murder charge, overturning the conviction imposed by the trial court.


The Buta Singh case underscores the significance of procedural fairness, evidence evaluation, and the presumption of innocence in criminal adjudication. The judgment highlights the judiciary's role in safeguarding individual rights and ensuring the integrity of the criminal justice system. Moreover, the case serves as a reminder of the complexities involved in determining guilt in criminal matters and the importance of adhering to legal standards of proof. By acquitting Buta Singh based on the insufficiency of evidence, the High Court reaffirmed the principle that the burden of proof rests with the prosecution and that the accused is entitled to the benefit of the doubt when evidence is inconclusive.