HYDERABAD: Failure on the part of an Investigating Officer (IO) in collecting supporting documentary evidence in the 2015 case of an on-duty TSRTC bus driver being attacked by a man, led to the acquittal of the accused. The incident happened when the bus stopped for the passengers to alight at the bus stop and the accused’s car hit the bus from behind, resulting in some damage to the car. The car driver immediately entered the bus and beat up the driver, leaving him injured.
Though there were many passengers in the bus at the time of the incident, the IO did not examine even a single passenger, the officer recently revealed during the court trial. The IO clearly stated that he had not collected any document from RTC authorities or the depot manager to show that on the date of the incident, the victim was deputed to work on the bus that was involved in the incident.
Further he did not even collect the duty sheet from the possession of the bus conductor to show that the victim was driving the bus on the date of the incident. “Thus, there is no evidence to show that the victim was on duty on the bus, on the date of incident,” the court observed.
“For all these reasons and in view of the doubtful circumstances, the accused is entitled to be acquitted on the ground of benefit of doubt. ” the court ruled.During the examination, the victim driver stated that there were around 35 passengers in the bus at the time of the incident. Further, the IO recorded statements of the witnesses on the date of the incident, but no kind of explanation is offered by him about why he has not recorded statements of even a single passenger to support the case. “Since the witnesses produced before the court are RTC employees, the prosecution is under an obligation to produce independent evidence to support its case,” said the court.