1. Ram Prasad has been convicted by the Additional Sessions Judge of Cawnpore on three separate charges of dacoity under Section 395 of the Indian penal Code and sentenced to five years' rigorous imprisonment, the sentences to run concurrently, He appeals. The Local Government has applied that the sentence should be enhanced.
2. On the facts, a gang of dacoits assembled on the highway between Khajua, and Jahanabad, on the 24th April 1922. Two ekkas passed carrying passengers; the passengers were robbed and maltreated; after another interval, a cart passed carrying passengers; these passengers were robbed and maltreated. Now, it is perfectly clear to us, upon the evidence, that the same gang of dacoits was present during the whole time and that a dacoity was committed in each instance. It is not material whether all the members of the gang took an active part in each dacoity. It is not material if as many as five of them took an active part in any one dacoity They were there. Some of them robbed each ekka and the cart and each act of crime was committed by the same gang in pursuance of the same object. Thus clearly all these offences were committed in the same transaction and Sections 235 and 239 of the Criminal Procedure Code have application.
3. The first point taken by the appellant, Ram Prasad, that there, was irregularity in his trial, fails.
4. In regard to the second point, his Counsel argues that, on the facts, he was not properly identified. We have gone through the evidence of identification and are satisfied that the identification of Ram Prasad was genuine and honest. We see no reason to make the reservation which the, learned Additional Sessions Judge made. We believe the evidence of Badlu and Dayal. Thus the appellant was identified, by no less than five witnesses. So far, from any undue advantage having been taken to procure his identification, the Deputy Magistrate, who conducted the identification proceedings, took action to help the appellant, as far as possible, to avoid identification. The appellant is a-one-eyed man. He had been described as a one-eyed man before he was ever arrested. The Magistrate, who conducted the identification proceedings, as the appellant was a one-eyed man, made the appellant and several other persons who were in the identification parade cover tip a corresponding eye. Thus the witnesses were unable to observe a very important point by which they could have identified the appellant.- Nevertheless five of them did so identify him. He was convicted on very satisfactory evidence, and we dismiss his appeal.
5. In respect of the application for enhancement of sentence, we agree with the learned Government Advocate that this was a very serious offence. A gang of highway men were holding up an. unfrequented road and committing dacoity on every harmless person who was passing in that direction. The members of the public must be protected from the depredations of such people.
6. We enhance the sentence passed upon Ram Prasad to one of ten years' rigorous imprisonment on each charge. The sentences will run concurrently.