The Division Bench comprising Justice S Nagamuthu and N Seshasayee, which partly allowed a criminal appeal filed by one Sivakami of Edappadi Village of Salem against the order passed by the Salem Sessions Judge, said, “We hold that the accused did not cause the death of the child and the death of the child was not a homicide. Thus, the conviction of her for the offence under Section 302 of the IPC (Murder) cannot be sustained. But, at the same time, she cannot escape from being convicted for the offence that she abandoned the dead body of the child near the lake to conceal the very birth of the child is an offence punishable under section 318 of the IPC (concealment of a birth by secret disposal of a dead body) and she should be punished. Since the offence under section 318 of the IPC is a minor offence she is convicted to undergo imprisonment for a period of two years,” the bench said.
As per the prosecution, the accused Sivakami, after the death of her husband in 2000, had developed illicit intimacy with one Palaniswamy resulting in her becoming pregnant. But, thereafter, in a bid to hide the it she moved to a village in Erode.
Subsequently, she delivered the baby at a bus stop at Moolakadai. Since, she delivered the child in a standing position, the baby fell on a cement floor and died. Thereafter, she had disposed the body in a nearby lake and returned to Edappadi. The sessions judge on finding her guilty of murder sentenced her to life. Hence the appeal.