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ISSUE-II

THE COURTS DECESION ACQUITTING THE ACCUSED


FROM CHARGE OF SECTION 302 OF D.P.C STATING LACK
OF MENS REA IS JUSTIFIABLE

It is humbly contended before this Honble court that the accused person is not guilty for
committing the offence of murder under section 302 of I.P.C.

2. ACCUSED PERSON IS NOT GUILTY OF MURDER AS PER SECTION


302 OF I.P.C.

Culpable homicide is murder, if the act by which the death is caused is done:-

(I) With the intention of causing death ; or


(II) With the intention of causing such bodily injury as the offender knows to be likely
to cause death of the person to whom the harm is caused
(III) With the intention of causing bodily injury to any person and the bodly injury
intended to be inflicted is sufficient in the ordinary course of nature to caude
death ;or
(IV) With the knowledge that the act is so imminently dangerous that it must in all
probability cause death or such bodily injury as is likely to cause death and
without any exercise or incurring the risk of causing death or such injury as is
mentioned above1
It is contended that the act of the accused person does not amount to culpable homicide as
defined in section 299 of I.P.C [A] the facts proved by the prosecution does not bring the case
within the ambit of any of the four clauses of definition of murder contained in section 300 of
I.P.C [B] coupled with the fact that there still exists a reasonable doubt in the present case[C]

1Indian Penal Code, 1860


A. The death of the deceased does not come within the meaning of culpable homicide as
per section 299 of I.P.C.

Under Sec 299 of I.P.C. Culpable homicide is causing of death by doing:-


1. an act with the intention of causing death ;
2. an act with the intention of causing such bodily injury as is likely to cause
death ; or
3. an act with the knowledge that it was likely to cause death

It is contended that the death of the deceased does not come within the meaning of culpable
homicide considering the fact that the death of human being is caused is not enough. Unless one
of the mental states mentioned in section 299 of D.P.C is present i.e. intention and knowledge for
that very act. ( nirbhai singh, 1972 Cr Lj 1474 (MP) )

The offence of culpable homicide presupposes an intention, or knowledge of likelihood, or


causing death. The intention must be directed either deliberately to putting an end to human life
or to some act which to the knowledge of the accused is likely to eventuate in putting an end to
human life.

[A.1] with the intention of causing death - By intention is meant the expectation of the
consequence in question. It is an universal principal, that when a man is charged with doing an
act, of which the probable consequence may be highly injurious, the intention is an inference of
law resulting from the doing of the act. Intention means existing intention of the moment, and is
proved by, or inferred from, the act of the accused and the circumstances of the case2

In the present case death of the victim took place in government medical college hospital after 4
days of the incident, there lies no evidence to show that accused Prasad was intended to commit
that very act which caused death of the victim and according to the circumstances presented
before the court accused was having every possible opportunity to put an end to the life of the
victim immediately. The accused was not having any kind of weapon neither he used any kind of
object to inflict those injuries where he was free to do so. It can be inferred from these facts and
circumstances that accused Prasad was not intended to cause death of victim.

2 Basdev AIR 1956 SC 488; 1956 Cri Lj 919 (SC): 1956 SCR 363.
[A.2] With the intention of causing such bodily injury as is likely to cause death It is
indispensable that the death should be clearly connected with the act of violence, not merely by a
chain of causes and effects, but by such direct influence as is calculated to produce the effect
without the intervention of any considerable change of circumstances.3

In the present case prosecution entirely failed in making a clear connection between the act of
violence and death of the victim .According to the post mortem report death is joint result of
injury no 1 and injury no 2. Prosecution completely relied on opinion of forensic expert for the
cause of injury no 1 and did not provide any evidence which can corroborate the opinion of the
forensic expert on the other hand injury no 2 is a mechanism which requires no intention and one
cannot inflict such injury deliberately. Injuries which are stated in postmortem report under the
head injury no 1 are not grave enough which can likely cause death of a person .

[A.3] With the knowledge that he is likely by such act to cause death knowledge is strong
word and imports a certainty and not merely a probability. 4 The knowledge referred to in this
section 299 and section 300 is the personal knowledge of the person who does the act.5In the case
in hand accused Prasad was not having any intention to inflict injuries which amounted to the
death of the victim. As stated in postmortem report that injury no 2 i.e. aspiration of considerable
amount of blood resulting in anoxic brain damage which happened due to committing rape in
supine position as opined by the forensic expert is an internal injury and a mechanism of the
body of which accused was unaware and clearly he was having no knowledge of that very
mechanism. Accused Prasad committed rape of the victim Clara for which he is been punished
by the court under section 376 of D.P.C and there lies no connection between the act of the
accused i.e. committing rape and death of the victim.

The offence of culpable homicide presupposes an intention or knowledge or likelihood of


causing death. The intention must be directed either deliberately to putting an end to the life of a
human or to some act which to the knowledge of the accused is likely to eventuate in putting an

3 Per Glover, J in Mahomed Hossein (1864) WR (GAP NO.) (Cr)

4 Ram jolaha AIR 1927 Pat 406: (1927) 28 Cri Lj 541 (pat).

5 Dildar khan AIR 1938 Oudh 88: (1938) 39 Cri Lj 330 (Oudh).
end to the human life. The knowledge must have reference to the particular circumstances in
which the accused is placed and the intention demanded by the section must stand in some
relation to a person who either is alive or who is believed by the accused to be alive 6.In the
absence of such intention or knowledge, the offence committed maybe the offence of causing
grievous hurt7 or simple hurt8

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B. The death is outside the ambit of section 300 of I.P.C.

It is humbly contended before this Honble court that the accused person cannot be charged
under sec 302, considering the fact that, there is a clear lack of mens rea [B.1] and an offence
cannot amount to murder unless it falls within the definition of culpable homicide. [B.2]

B.1 Lack of Mens rea

Intent and knowledge in the ingredients of section 300 postulates the existence of positive
mental attitude and this mental attitude and this mental condition is the special mens rea
necessary for the offence. The guilty intention in the first two conditions contemplates the
intended death of the person harmed or the intentional causing of an injury likely to cause death.9

In the matter at hand, it could be seen that-

Post mortem report showed that death of victim was joint result of injury no.1 and injury
no.2. The prosecution has failed entirely to produce any cogent or substantial evidence of
any kind which lead to the fact that injury no. 1 was a result of hitting the victims head
on the wall of trains compartment or it was caused due to jumping out of the train.

Injury no.2 was an internal injury of which accused was unaware and was not having any
knowledge or intention to inflict that particular injury.

It is nowhere stated in the post mortem report that how grave injuries were, injuries of
such nature can also be caused in other circumstances.

The prosecution has entirely failed in producing any evidence which can show that
accused was intended to cause such bodily injuries which lead to the death of the victim.

From the above mentioned arguments, it is evident that there was clear lack of mens rea in the
present matter
9 Jayaraj v. state of T.N., AIR 1976 SC 1519
B.2 No culpable homicide

An offence cannot amount to murder unless it falls within the definition of culpable homicide.

In Ajit Singh vs. State of Punjab it was held, in order to hold whether an offence would fall
under section 302 the courts have to be extremely cautious in examine whether the same falls
under section 300 of the I.P.C which states whether a culpable homicide is murder.

C. Reasonable doubt.

In light of all the aforementioned arguments, it is humbly submitted that there exists reasonable
doubt and hence he should be acquitted of the alleged crime. A reasonable doubt must not be
imaginary, trivial or merely possible doubt; but a fair doubt based upon reason and common
sense arising out of the evidence of the case.10

In the present case, the prosecutions arguments are leaning towards the fact that the crime may
have been committed by the accused, however they have failed to make the link between may
have committed the crime and must have committed the crime and that gap must be filled by
the prosecution by legal, reliable and unimpeachable evidence before a conviction can be
sustained.

Therefore, it is humbly submitted before this Honble Court that the charge under section 302 of
the IPC has not been made out.

10 Ramakant Rai v. Madan Rai, Cr Lj 2004 SC 36.