“Necessary to read mind of offender and not consider offence devoid of emotions”: Bom HC acquits accused of offence under S. 302 IPC rather convicts under S. 304 Part I IPC

Bombay High Court: Convicting a person under Section 304 Part I of Penal Code, 1860 Division Bench of Sadhana S. Jadhav and Sarang V. Kotwal, JJ., held that,

On finding that there was no hope that his beloved wife would return to matrimonial abode, accused got enraged an lost self-control and assaulted his wife with whatever available just nearby.

Appellant was convicted for the offence under Section 302 of the Penal Code, 1860.

Factual Matrix

Appellant was married to the deceased Kamal in 2002, in 2015 PW 4 sister of Kamal lodged a report alleging that her sister had disclosed to her that her husband suspected her chastity and was harassing and ill-treating her.

Later, accused had called upon PW4 and enquired about the whereabout of his wife, however, PW4 had feigned ignorance about the whereabouts of Kamal and then a missing complaint was filed by him.

It was also stated that Kamal had refused to return her matrimonial abode and thereafter, she was assaulted by the accused with pestle.

Analysis, Law and Decision

Bench noted that the present case of the prosecution was that the accused was insisting upon his wife to return to her rightful matrimonial abode with a hope that the crises would be ironed. Though the deceased denied the offer. 

It was as if, there was no hope for the accused that his beloved wife would return with him and being enraged and deprived of self-control, had assaulted his wife with whatever available just nearby.

In view of the above, Court stated that it would be necessary to read the mind of the offender and not consider the offence devoid of emotions.

Therefore, the accused would fall under Section 304 Part I of the Penal Code, 1860 and accused deserved to be acquitted of offence punishable under Section 302 IPC.

Appeal was disposed of accordingly. [Ankush Krishna Chavan v. State of Maharashtra, 2021 SCC OnLine Bom 3022, decided on 22-09-2021]


Advocates before the Court:

Mr Lokesh Zade, Court Appointed advocate for appellant.

Ms G.P. Mulekar, APP for State.

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