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Karnataka High Court has acquitted a woman who is accused of killing her two-month-old baby who was suffering from some respiratory problems and epilepsy. She allegedly threw her child into the river in August 2016.

A division bench comprising Justice K. Somashekar and Justice Shivashankar Amarannanavar cited the prosecution’s failure to submit corroborating evidence for acquitting Kavitha. The bench noted that awarding of life sentence is not tenable and therefore, quashed the charges of murder under Section 302 of Indian Penal Code.

33-year-old Kavitha from Madakasira taluk in the Anantapur district of Andhra Pradesh. Madhugiri trial court had sentenced her to life imprisonment and a Rs 10,000 fine. Recently, the court ordered her immediate release citing the reason that she already had spent 6 years in jail.

As per the prosecution, Kavitha visited Renuka Hospital in Koratagere with her husband Manjunatha and two month old daughter who was suffering from epilepsy and respiratory problems. It was submitted that Kavitha was unable to breastfeed the child and therefore she threw the child into the river.

Reportedly, the postmortem report revealed that the cause of death was asphyxia as a result of drowning.

15 witnesses were questioned. The trial court appreciated the evidence of two doctors which drew an inference that Kavitha Threw the child into the river and killed it.

However, the bench noted that the trial court had ignored the five witnesses, including the husband who was the complainant in the case, had turned hostile. The bench also observed that the two witnesses, on whom the prosecution was relying to prove the last scene theory, had also turned hostile.

In the instant case, the importance of corroboration of the evidence which was facilitated by the prosecution, it must be positive, cogent, consistent and probabalised that the accused had committed the murder of the deceased. But in the instant case, Kavitha who is none other than the mother of the deceased baby aged two months, though the prosecution in their case put on trial of this accused, subjected examination of PW 1 to PW 15, but no worthwhile evidence has been facilitated by the prosecution for securing the conviction of the accused for the offence under section 302 of Indian Penal Code, 1860. Therefore, in this appeal, it requires intervention,” the bench noted.


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