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Dadarao S/o Hausaji Dakor v. The State of Maharashtra - (High Court of Bombay) (06 Mar 2017)

Conviction under Section 306 of Indian Penal Code, 1860 can be sustained only on positive act on part of accused to instigate or aid in committing suicide



In facts of present case, Applicant submits that, even reading of suicide note as it is, it does not disclose any grudge and grievance against present Applicant nor it discloses any cognizable offence, more particularly, offence under Section 306 of Indian Penal Code, 1860/IPC. Further, invites attention to provisions of Sections 107 and 306 of IPC and submits that, ingredients of said offences are not attracted, and therefore, no offence is disclosed against present applicant.

Contents of suicide note, reveals that, deceased committed suicide on 22nd August, 2016. Present Applicant was transferred on 31st July, 2015, from Nanded to Yavatmal as Executive Engineer, Zilla Parishad, Yavatmal. Therefore, in view of time gap between alleged incident and transfer of the Applicant from Nanded to Yavatmal, it was not possible to hold that, Applicant instigated, abetted or intentionally aided in commission of suicide by deceased.

In case of Madan Mohan Singh V. State of Gujarat and anr. Supreme Court, while explaining scope of Sections 306 and 294 vis-à-vis, the facts of that case held thus:" It is absurd to even think that a superior officer like the Appellant would intend to bring about suicide of his driver and, therefore, abet the offence. In fact, there is no nexus between so-called suicide and any of the alleged acts on the part of the Appellant. There is no proximity either. In prosecution under Section 306, IPC, much more material is required. There is no proximity either. Even if allegations in suicide note are read in its entirety, same would not even remotely suggest that, Applicant abetted, intentionally aided or instigated in an alleged suicide by deceased.

Supreme Court in case of S.S. Chheena V/s Vijay Kumar Mahajan and Another observed that, abetment involves mental process of instigating a person or intentionally aiding a person in doing of a thing. Without a positive act on part of the accused to instigate or aid in committing suicide, conviction cannot be sustained. Intention of legislature and ratio of cases decided by this Court is clear that in order to convict a person under Section 306 IPC there has to be a clear mens rea to commit offence. It also requires an active act or direct act which led deceased to commit suicide seeing no option and that act must have been intended to push the deceased into such a position that he committed suicide.

In light of settled legal position, High Court opined that, further continuation of investigation/proceedings on basis of F.I.R. under Section 306 of the IPC qua the Applicant would be abuse of process of law. Hence, same is quashed and set aside.

Relevant : Madan Mohan Singh V. State of Gujarat and anr., .S. Chheena V/s Vijay Kumar Mahajan and Another


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