1. In this case 11 accused were put upon their trial before the learned Sessions Judge and a jury. Eight have been found guilty by a majority of three to two and they have been convicted by the learned Judge. The case arose out of an affray which appears to have occurred in connexion with a dispute as to who had the right of possession of certain agricultural land. The occurrence took place at three or four o'clock in the afternoon of 22nd July 1928. The learned Judge in his charge to the jury has described the occurrence which would appear to show that both the complainant party and the accused party were present. Many of them were armed and so far as the complainant's party was concerned, they were in possession of one gun and a member of the party of the accused was shot with it. The questions for the jury have been very lucidly and elaborately set forth in the charge. The learned Sessions Judge has explained most satisfactorily the importance of the question of possession. He has shown to the jury that unless they find that the complainant's party were in possession they cannot find the common object of the charge under Section 147, Criminal P.C. and also they would have to consider the serious question of private defence. Upon reading the charge as a whole it does not appear to me that any objection of a serious kind can be taken to it. In the end Mr. Taluqdar for the accused persons lays stress upon the objection which he makes to the way in which the learned Judge has dealt with the question as what is the first information report.
2. In this case it would seem that the affray having taken place in the afternoon of 22nd July the first person to lodge a complaint within the meaning of Section 154, Criminal P.C. was one of the accused party. He made no complaint of anything having been done by his own party, but he complained that the complainants had assaulted them. The next day that is, on 23rd July, it appears that the complainant's party two of whom were badly wounded went to the hospital and before they went there they informed the constable at the police station that throe people had been injured. It would appear that they went nearer to the Falta Police Station than the Diajmond Harbour Police Station. At about 2 o'clock one of the party wont to the former Police Station and could not find the officer-in-charge and accordingly he went back to the hospital and next morning that is, on 24th, ho came to Falta Police Station to see the officer-in-charge and. made a complaint under Section 154, Criminal P.C. At the trial the learned Judge has treated this as the first information report for the purposes of the present case; the others have not been treated as the first information report. The question which has been raised by Mr. Taluqdar is whether the counter-information of 22nd July is not the first information report which would prevent that of 24th July being received in evidence, save at the instance of the defence, by reason of Section 162, Criminal P.C. In my judgment the contention of Mr. Taluqdar is not sound on the facts of this case. The first information report which is to be dealt with properly under Section 154, Criminal P.C. is a different thing from the statements made to a police officer in the course of an investigation such as are brought within Section 162, Criminal P.C. I do not assent to the proposition, that because a person of the party of the accused goes first to the police station and says that some of the complainant's party has committed an offence, the, real complaint against the accused must be kept off the record save on terms under Sectopm 162, Criminal P.C. It is a question of fact whether a statement made to a police officer in the course of an investigation in such cases comes under Section 162 or is made by way of complaint to commence an investigation under Section 154. The two matters are dealt with differently in the Code. One says that even if the statement is reduced to writing, is not to be signed whereas the other statement is to be reduced to writing and is to be signed.
3. In my opinion the first information within the meaning of the Code which applies to this particular trial was the document of 24th July which has been properly treated as the first information. In these circumstances I am of opinion that the appeal fails and must be dismissed.
4. The accused must surrender to their bail and serve out the unexpired portion of their sentences.
C.C. Ghose, J.
5. I agree.