‘A’ is an absconding criminal with a warrant of arrest issued against him for dacoity. The chowkidar, getting information of his presence in the village proceeded with a party to arrest him. A pointing a blunderbuss at the party, pulled…

By | July 21, 2021
ipc mains

Question: ‘A’ is an absconding criminal with a warrant of arrest issued against him for dacoity. The chowkidar, getting information of his presence in the village proceeded with a party to arrest him. A pointing a blunderbuss at the party, pulled the trigger, the cap exploded but the piece missed fire. Has any offence been committed in the above cases by ‘A’? [D.J.S. 1989]

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Answer

A in the present case is liable for an attempt to murder under Section 307, IPC. The present facts of the case are borrowed from Queen Empress v. Nidha in which Nidha, who had been absconding, noticing certain chowkidars arrive, brought up a sort of a blunderbuss he was carrying, to the hip and pulled the trigger. The cap exploded, but the charge did not go off.

He was convicted by the Sessions Judge under Sections 299 and 300 read with Section 511, and not under Section 307, Indian Penal Code, as the learned Judge relied on a Bombay Case Regina v. Francis Cassidy in which it was held that in order to constitute the offence of attempt to murder, under Section 307, the act committed by the person must be an act capable of causing, in the natural and ordinary course of events, death.

The Supreme Court of India in the case of Om Parkash v. The State of Punjab 1961 AIR 1782 has given a suitable explanation for the reason of a conviction under Section 307, IPC. The court observed that:

On a parity of reasoning, a person commits an offence of attempt to murder under Section 307 when he has an intention to commit murder and, in pursuance of that intention, does an act towards its commission irrespective of the fact whether that act is the penultimate act or not.

It is to be clearly understood, however, that the intention to commit the offence of murder means that the person concerned has the intention to do certain acts with the necessary intention or knowledge mentioned in Section 300. The intention to commit an offence is different from the intention or knowledge requisite for constituting the act as that offence.

The expression ‘whoever attempts to commit an offence’ in Section 511, can only mean ‘whoever intends to do a certain action with the intent or knowledge necessary for the commission of that offence’. The same is meant by the expression ‘whoever does any act with such intention or knowledge and under such circumstances that if he, by that act, caused death, he would be guilty of murder’ in Section 307.

The word ‘act’ again, does not mean only any particular, specific, instantaneous act of a person, but denotes, according to Section 33 of the Code, as well, a series of acts and therefore acts falling short of completing the series and would therefore come within the purview of Section. 307 of the Code.


Important Mains Questions Series for Judiciary, APO & University Exams

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