SC:News emerging in the media cannot be urged as a ground of review

The Hon’ble Supreme Court, on 18th December 2019, in the matter of Akshay Kumar Singh v. State (Nct Of Delhi) pronounced that the materials or the news emerging in the media and press as also the news channels cannot be taken note of in arriving at a conclusion on the culpability of the accused or to test credibility of the witness. Such events cannot be urged as a ground for review.

The Hon’ble Supreme Court observed that:

Scope of review is limited and review cannot be entertained except in cases of error apparent on the face of the record. Article 137 of the Constitution of India empowers the Supreme Court to review any judgment pronounced or made, subject, of course, to the provisions of any law made by the Parliament or any rule made under Article 145 of the Constitution of India. (Para 8)

As per the Supreme Court Rules, review in the criminal proceedings is permissible only on the ground of error apparent on the face of the record. (Para 8)

Review is a not a rehearing of the appeal over again. In a review petition, it is not for the Court to re-appreciate the evidence and reach a different conclusion. (Para 10)

A review of the judgment is permitted only when it is shown that judgment suffers from error apparent on the face of the judgment. (Para 12)

In a criminal case, culpability or otherwise of the accused are based upon appreciation of evidence adduced by the prosecution and also the evidence adduced by the defence. The materials or the news emerging in the media and press as also the news channels cannot be taken note of in arriving at a conclusion on the culpability of the accused or to test credibility of the witness. Such events cannot be urged as a ground for review. (Para 20)

The review petition is not for re-hearing of the appeal on reappreciation of the evidence over and over again. A party is not entitled to seek review of the judgment merely for the purpose of rehearing of the appeal and a fresh decision. (Para 27)

Copy of judgement: Judgement_18-Dec-2019

-Adv. Tushar Kaushik

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