The crime is heinous. Its execution was vicious and cruel, by any stretch of imagination. The entire crime was calculated and ruthless. Our adjudication is restricted to, whether Shubam Sangra was a juvenile on date of commission of offence.
The ratio discernible is, credibility and acceptability of documents would depend on facts and circumstances. We have made ourselves very clear, documents evidencing date of birth do not inspire any confidence.
There is no good reason why we should overlook or ignore or doubt, credibility of a Team of 5 Qualified Doctors [Department of Physiology, Department of Anatomy, Department of Oral Diagnosis, Department of Forensic Medicine, Department of Radio Diagnosis]. All say, approximate age of Shubam Sangra could be fixed between 19 and 23.
It is held, Shubam Sangra was not a juvenile on date of commission of offence and should be tried how other co-accused were tried in accordance with law. Before we close this matter, we would like to observe, rising rate of juvenile delinquency in India is a matter of concern and requires immediate attention.
– Hon’ble Justice J.B. Pardiwala, State of Jammu & Kashmir v. Shubam Sangra, [Criminal Appeal No. 1928 of 2022].