Case Summary: Upholding Conviction Under Prevention of Corruption Act

In a significant legal ruling, the Supreme Court of India has upheld the conviction under the Prevention of Corruption Act. The case involved the appellant Vinod Kumar Garg and key witnesses Nand Lal and Hemant Kumar. Despite minor discrepancies in testimonies, the court focuses on the core facts of bribe demand, acceptance, and recovery. The emphasis is on the importance of sanction orders and the adequacy of evidence before prosecution. Justice is served as the court carefully examines the material and dismisses technical objections. #LegalJudgment #SupremeCourt #CorruptionAct #JusticeServed


  • The appellant Vinod Kumar Garg has been convicted under Sections 7 and 13 of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988.
  • He has been sentenced to rigorous imprisonment for one and a half years and a fine of Rs. 1,000/- for each offence.
  • There are contradictions in the testimonies of the complainant Nand Lal (PW-2) and the panch witness Hemant Kumar (PW-3) on material aspects.
  • Nand Lal (PW-2) denied paying any money to the appellant before lodging the complaint, but had alleged in his complaint that he paid Rs. 500/- fifteen days prior.
  • Further contradictions were found in Nand Lal (PW-2) and Hemant Kumar’s (PW-3) statements regarding the hand-wash and pant-wash of the appellant during the examination and cross-examination.
  • Hemant Kumar (PW-3) contradicted his version about taking the pant wash of the accused at the Anti-Corruption Branch during his cross-examination.
  • Nand Lal (PW-2) denied the suggestion that the appellant asked for Rs. 2,000/- separately from him and Hemant Kumar (PW-3).
  • Testimony of Hemant Kumar (PW-3) contradicts Nand Lal’s version, stating that the appellant asked them each to pay Rs. 2,000/-.
  • Inspector Rohtash Singh (PW-5) admitted to not taking the hand-wash or pant wash of the appellant for evidence.
  • Dichotomy in the testimonies of Nand Lal (PW-2) and Hemant Kumar (PW-3) regarding the amount of bribe demanded by the appellant.
  • Hemant Kumar (PW-3) accepted in cross-examination that hand-wash and pocket wash were not taken after the appellant’s apprehension.

Also Read: Judgment in the Case of Sundew Properties Ltd. v. TSERC & APTEL


  • The contradictions in the testimonies of Nand Lal (PW-2) and Hemant Kumar (PW-3) on the amount demanded are considered inconsequential as the demand and acceptance of the bribe by the appellant are established.
  • The variations in testimonies lose significance compared to the consistent evidence of the recovery of bribe money from the appellant’s pocket.
  • Sanction orders are crucial safeguards against frivolous litigation but should not be overly scrutinized; rather, they should demonstrate prima facie evidence for prosecution.
  • The appellant’s rejection of the bribe allegations is refuted by coherent accounts of the complainant Nand Lal (PW-2) and corroborating witnesses.
  • The prosecution’s evidence, despite minor discrepancies, effectively proves the demand, acceptance, and recovery of the bribe money.
  • The technical objections raised by the appellant regarding sanction orders and investigation validity are dismissed for lack of substantial prejudice.
  • The testimonies of Nand Lal (PW-2), Hemant Kumar (PW-3), and Inspector Rohtash Singh (PW-5) collectively establish the sequence of events surrounding the bribery.
  • The application of mind by the sanctioning authority and the adequacy of materials before granting sanction are emphasized as essential legal requirements.
  • Despite divergences in testimonies, the core facts of bribe demand, acceptance, and recovery remain consistent, leading to the rejection of the appellant’s claims.
  • The reluctance of certain witnesses to provide specific details is deemed natural given the time gap between the incident and their testimonies.
  • Valid sanction is granted by the Sanctioning Authority after being satisfied that a case for sanction is made out constituting the offence.
  • It is crucial for the Sanctioning Authority to be aware of the facts constituting the offence and to apply its mind before giving sanction.
  • A defect or irregularity in investigation, no matter how serious, does not directly affect the competence or procedure relating to cognizance or trial.
  • In cases of demanding and accepting illegal gratification, prosecution version can be accepted based on oral evidence even if trap witnesses turn hostile, especially when supported by circumstantial evidence.
  • Principles of law governing the validity of sanction include the requirement that the authority carefully examines the material before granting sanction.
  • Section 19(1) of the Act is procedural and does not affect the court’s jurisdiction.
  • Once cognizance is taken under the Code, an invalid police report does not impact the court’s jurisdiction or the trial.
  • If cognizance has been taken and the case has proceeded to termination, the invalidity of the preceding investigation does not affect the outcome unless a miscarriage of justice occurred.
  • An error, omission, or irregularity in sanction is not fatal unless it resulted in a failure of justice.

Also Read: High Court Judgment on Renewal of Mining Leases: State of Odisha vs. Thakurani Global Processors


  • All pending applications disposed of.
  • Coercive steps to be taken by trial court if appellant fails to surrender.
  • Appellant must surrender within four weeks to undergo remaining sentence.
  • Present appeal dismissed, conviction under Sections 7 and 13 of the Act upheld.
  • Sentences as imposed confirmed.

Also Read: Arvind Kejriwal vs. Directorate of Enforcement: Interim Bail Granted by Supreme Court of India


Case Number: Crl.A. No.-001781-001781 / 2009

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