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Criminal Lawyer : In some cases, inspite of availability of matriculation certificate, enquiry can be ordered and finding can be relied upon while deciding juvenility; SC.

Supreme Court of India

Justice D Y Chandrachud and Justice Indira Banerjee

The SC holds that even in case of availability of the matriculation certificate, to decide the claim of juvenility, in case of doubt about the correctness of the date of birth or in case of contradictory stand, an enquiry for determination of the age of the accused is permissible.

The SC {Sanjeev Kumar Gupta versus State of Uttar Pradesh and another} was considering the challenge to the judgement of the High Court - by which it was held, in case of availability of the matriculation certificate, for deciding the claim of juvenility, the enquiry cannot be ordered, as the matriculation certificate has to be given precedence over any other evidence - and the respondent was held to be juvenile by the HC. Setting aside the said judgement of the HC, the SC holds that in the present case the matriculation certificate was obtained on the basis of date of birth provided by the school to CBSE; and the school was being provided with no supporting document in regard to that by the respondent. And there is different date of birth on the aadhar Card and driving licence of the respondent as to the matriculation certificate, and also in the first school of the respondent / accused he has also recorded the same date of birth as recorded in driving licence and aadhar card. In view of that, the SC while allowing the appeal, rejected the plea of juvenility of the respondent / accused and directed the normal trial.

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