Reply To: Indian Evidence Act

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Tina DU

Soon before-

In ‘Hira Lal & Ors. vs. State’, AIR 2003 SC 2865, Supreme Court observed :-
“…..The expression ‘soon before’ is very relevant where Section
113-B of the Evidence Act and 304-B IPC are pressed into
service. Prosecution is obliged to show that soon before the
occurrence there was cruelty or harassment and only in that
case presumption operates. Evidence in that regard has to be led
by prosecution. ‘Soon before’ is a relative term and it would
depend upon circumstances of each case and no strait-jacket
formula can be laid down as to what would constitute a period
of soon before the occurrence. It would be hazardous to indicate
any fixed period of soon before the occurrence. Suffice, however,
to indicate that the expression ‘soon before’ would normally
imply that the interval should not be much between the concerned
cruelty or harassment and the death in question. There must be
existence of a proximate and live link between the effect of
cruelty based on dowry demand and the concerned death. If
alleged incident of cruelty is remote in time and has become stale
enough not to disturb mental equilibrium of the woman concerned,
it would be of no consequence.”