For reiteration of the position, see another judgement of the same day by a different bench.
Prem Kanwar v. State of Rajasthan. Criminal Appeal No. 58 of 2002. Date of Judgment 07-01-09
"The determination of the period which can come within the term `soon before' is left to be determined by the Courts, depending upon facts and circumstances of each case. Suffice, however, to indicate that the expression `soon before' would normally imply that the interval should not be much between the concerned cruelty or harassment and the death in question. There must be existence of a proximate and live-link between the effect of cruelty based on dowry demand and the concerned death. If alleged incident of cruelty is remote in time and has become stale enough not to disturb mental equilibrium of the woman concerned, it would be of no consequence."
Protection of public servant under S.197 C. P.C .
Choudhury Parveen Sultana v. West Bengal and Another. Criminal Appeal No. 8 of 2009. Date of Judgment 07-01-09
1. All acts done by a public servant in the purported discharge of his official duties cannot as a matter of course be brought under the protective umbrella of Section 197 Cr.P.C.
2. There can be cases of misuse and/or abuse of powers vested in a public servant which can never be said to be a part of the official duties required to be performed by him.
3. The underlying object of Section 197 Cr.P.C is to enable the authorities to scrutinize the allegations made against a public servant to shield him/her against frivolous, vexatious or false prosecution initiated with the main object of causing embarrassment and harassment o the said official.
4. However, if the authority vested in a public servant is misused for doing things which are not otherwise permitted under the law, such acts cannot claim the protection of Section 197 Cr.P.C. and have to be considered de hors the duties which a public servant is required to discharge or perform.
5. Whether there is a misuse of authority is a question of fact