File Copyright Online - File mutual Divorce in Delhi - Online Legal Advice - Lawyers in India

Abetment

Provoking, encouraging and aiding anyone for doing any criminal act which is punishable by law is known as abetment. This article talks about chapter V of Indian Penal Code, 1860 i.e Abetment. Criminal Law in itself is very clear while imparting any kind of punishment and holding anyone liable under any kind of offences.

Chapter V of Indian Penal Code, 1860 is the first offence which starts in Indian Penal Code, 1860 stating that the mastermind behind the commission of offence should not be set free on the mere ground that the actusrea has not been done by the person behind the offence committed or yet to be committed. The concept of abetment has widens the scope of criminal law to incorporate these criminal intension and penalize them according to the provision laid down under chapter V of Indian Penal Code, 1860.

There are four stages of crime which is read as below:

  1. For any offence being committed or instigates other for there commission there should be a human being, Human being plays an important role in any kind of criminal act being done by himself or either made other to do so and be liable for the same.
     
  2. Intension and knowledge plays and important role in any criminal act being done by human being. However a non- criminal behavior as simple as buying a knife for household use becomes criminal when there is any kind of criminal intension behind getting the knife.Non of the act can be considered itself a crime if done with guilty mind.
     
  3. After the formation of an intension mere execution is necessary which is followed by actusreai.e the act done in return of the intension formed causing injury to others.
     
  4. Last stage is the offense itself which is the result of any kind of criminal intention and criminal act punishable under law. Eg: Murder, Rape, Robbery, etc.

So , in middle of the above four stages abetment may take placei.e at the very initial stage of planning where the intension is develop by one person but the act is done by other as a result of instigation for the commission of an offence. Abetment is a substantive offence where the commission of offence is not considered, one is held liable for mere instigating, conspiring and aiding other for the commission of the offence.

Meaning Of Abetment: (Section-107)

Section 107-120 of Indian Penal Code 1860, talks about abetment. According to section 107 which explains the meaning of abetment, in general to abets means to instigate, to help, to encourage to put in execution his criminal intension. Abetment consist of three act which is laid down in section 107:

  1. Abetment by instigation: In common it is said that one can motivate other in two possible ways which is motivating one for good cause and motivating other for bad cause which is abetment by instigation and hence, held liable for such instigation irrespective of the act abetted be committed or not.A person “instigate” the doing of a thing who by willful misrepresent, or willful concealment of a material fact which he is bound to disclose, voluntarily causes or procure , or attempt to cause or procure a thing to be done. This is known as abetment by instigation.

    Illustration: A, a public officer, is authorized by a warrant by court of justice to apprehend Z. B, knowing that fact that C is not Z, willful represent to A that C is Z ,and thereby intentionally causes A to apprehend C. Here B abets by instigation the apprehension of C.
     
  2. Abetment by conspiracy: Abetment by conspiracy involves engaging with one or more person in any conspiracy for the doing of that thing, if an act or illegal omission takes in pursuance of that conspiracy. Abetment by conspiracy is only said to be done when there is conspiracy done between two or more person for commission of an criminal act, if act committed will amount to abetment by conspiracy, if the same is not committed will amount to conspiracy and will be punishable under section 120A and not for abetment by conspiracy.
     
  3. Abetment by aid: The third kind of abetment is abetment by intentionally aiding (by an act or illegal omission) the doing of any criminal offence. Explanation 2 to section 107 clarifies that a person is said to aid the doing of an act, who either prior to or at the time of commission of an offence, does anything in order to facilitate the commission of that act.

    Illustration: Aa priest performed the wedding ceremony of a marriage man with an unmarried women. Here priest is liable for intentionally aiding and is liable for abetment by aid.


Who Is Abettor?

Section 108 of Indian Penal Code,1860 talks about abettor, a person who abets an offence, who abets either the commission of an offence, or either the commission of an act which would be an offence, if committed by a person capable by law with the same intension or knowledge as that of the abettor.

Five proposition as to Abetment , contained in section 108 of IPC, which are as follows:

  1. The abetment of the illegal omission of an act may amount to an offence although the abettor may not himself be bound to do that act. Thus if a public servant is guilty on an illegal omission of duty made punishable by the code, and a private person instigates him he abets the offence of which public servant is guilty, although the abettor, being a private person, could not himself have been guilty of the offence.
     
  2. To constitute the offence of abetment, it is not necessary that the act abetted is committed or not. The offence of abetment depends upon the intention of the person who abets, and not upon the actual act done by the person abetted.

    Illustration: A instigates B to murder C. B refuses to do so. A is guilty of abetting B to commit murder.
     
  3. To constitute the offence of abetment, it is not necessary that the person abetted should be capable by law of committing an offence, or have the same guilty intention or knowledge as that of the abettor. Abetment is a substantive offence irrespective of the criminal intention or knowledge to be the same as that of abettor, mere instigation to commit a criminal offence is necessary and does not consider the abetteei.e to whom abettor abets to do an act, either capable by law or not.

    Illustration: A with a guilty intention, abets a child or a lunatic person to commit an act which would be an offence, if committed by a person capable by law of committing an offence, and having the same intention as A. Here A weather the act be committed or not, is guilty of abetting an offence.
     
  4. When the abetment of an offence is an offence the abetment of such an abetment is also an offence.

    Illustration: A instigates B to instigate C to murder Z. B accordingly instigates C to murder Z and commits that offence in consequence of B’s instigation. B is liable to be punished for the offence with the punishment for murder and as a instigates B to commit the offence, A is also liable for the same punishment.
     
  5. To constitute the offence of abetment by conspiracy, it is not necessary that the abettor should concert the offence with the person who commits it. It is sufficient if he engages in the conspiracy in pursuance of which the offence is committed will be liable.

    Section 108A talks about when a person abets an offence within the meaning of this code who in India, abets the commission of any act beyond India which would be liable for an offence if committed in India.


Punishment For Abetment Under Indian Penal Code,1860:

From section 109 to section 120 of Indian Penal Code, 1860 deals with punishment for abetment which are as follows:

Section 109: Punishment of abetment if the act abetted is committed in consequences, and where no express provision is made for its punishment:
If a person abets an offence, and the act abetted is committed in consequences of the abetment where no expressed provision is made under this code for the punishment of such abetment, be punished with the punishment provided for the offence with is abetted and committed.

Whereas in some case of abetment the express provision is made for the punishment. It is to be made clear that an act or offence is said to be committed in the consequences of abetment, when it is committed in consequences of instigation, or in pursuance of conspiracy, or with aiding, which constitute the abetment. According as offence abetted is cognizable or non- cognizable, bailable or non- bailable, triable by court and non -compoundable.

Illustration:

  • A instigates B to give false evidence B under the instigation of A commits an offence. Here A is guilty of abetting the offence, and is liable for same offence as of B.
  • A offers a bribe to B , a public servant, as a reward of showing some official favour to A. B accepts the bribe A has abetted the offence and is liable for the offence defined in section 161 of IPC.


Section 110: Punishment of abetment if person abetted does act with different intension from that of the abettor:

This section laid down the provision for punishment of abetteei.e the person abetted, if does the act with different knowledge or intension from that of the abettor, be punished with the punishment provided for the offence which would have been committed if the act has been done with the same intension and knowledge of the abettor. The person abetted for the commission of an offence and commit and act cannot take a defense mere on the ground that the act done in the consequences of the abetment is done with different intension and knowledge from that of abettor, he will be equally liable for the punishment. According as offence abetted is cognizable or non- cognizable, bailable or non- bailable, triable by court and non- compoundable.

Section 111: Liability of the abettor when one act abetted and different act done:

When an act abetted and a different act is done, the abettor is liable for the act done in the same manner as if abetted directly, provided that the act done was likely to be caused as a course of offence abetted, and was committed under the influence of instigation, or with aid, or with pursuance of conspiracy which constitute the abetment. And if any act done which is not the probable consequences of abetment, the abettor is hereby not liable for any different kind of offence committed. According as offence abetted is cognizable or non- cognizable, bailable or non- bailable, triable by court and non compoundable.

Illustration: A instigatea child to put poison into the food of Z, and give him the poison for that purpose. The child in consequence of the instigation, by mistake put the poison into Y’s food which was kept just next to that of Z which result in death of Y. Here A is liable in the same manner and the same extent as if he has abetted the child to poison Y, because child is acting under the influence of abetment.

Section 112: Abettor when liable to cumulative punishment for act abetted and for act done:

Section 112 is an extension of section 111 of Indian Penal Code. According to section 111 if the offence committed is different from that of act abetted but it is in probable consequences of the abetment, done under the influence of instigation or aiding for the commission of an act. The abettor is held liable of the act in the same manner as if abetted directly.

Further it is said that the word cumulative used here in this section states that the act abetted and act done in pursuance of abetment exceeds in nature and thereby causing additional act resulting in additional offence of that abetted. Abettor is liable for the additional offence, if that offence is result of the probable consequence of abetment.

Section 113: liability of abettor for an effect caused by the act abetted different from that intended by the abettor:
Intension and knowledge plays an important role in any criminal act done or abetted. If an act abetted with different intension causing different effect as a result, abettor will be liable of the effect cause, on the ground that he knew that the act abetted was likely to cause such effect. Although intension is different from the act caused but one will be liable for the effect mere on the ground of knowledge.

The major difference between section 111 and section 113 is that section 111, says that when one act abetted and difference act is committed and in section 113, the act abetted and committed is same but the effect cause is different. According as offence abetted is cognizable or non- cognizable, bailable or non- bailable, triable by court and non- compoundable.

Section 114: Abettor present when offence is committed:

This section states that whenever any person who is absent would liable to be punished as an abettor, is present when the act or offence is being committed in consequences of the abetment for which he would be punishable, the law will resume that the abettor himself has committed such offence and act. And the abettor will be liable to be punished for the offence committed and not for the abetment of offence. According as offence abetted is cognizable or non- cognizable, bailable or non- bailable, triable by court and non- compoundable.

Terms Of Punishment Provided In Section 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 120 Of Indian Penal Code, 1860:

Section 115: abetment of offence punishable with death or imprisonment for life- if offence not committed:

If offence not committed in consequences of abetment. 7 years of imprisonment +Fine
If act causing harm be done in consequences 14 years of imprisonment +Fine



Section 116: abetment of offence punishable with imprisonment- if offence be not committed:

Offence not committed in consequences of abetment ¼ of the longest term of punishment provided for the offence / fine /both. 
If abettor be a public servant whose duty id to prevent offence. ½ of the longest term of punishment provided for the offence / fine /both.



Section 117: Abetting commission of offence by the public or by more than ten persons:

Any person who abets the commission of offence by the public generally or by any number or class of person exceeding ten, shall be punished with imprisonment for the term which may extent to three years, or fine or both. According as offence abetted is cognizable or non- cognizable, bailable or non- bailable, triable by court and non- compoundable.

Punishment For Concealing Designs Or Plans To Commit Offence:

Section 118,119 and 120 of Indian Penal Code,1860 laid down the provision for punishment of concealing the design voluntarily by any act or illegal omission which lead to the commission of an offence be punishable under these sections.

Section 118: concealing design to commit offence punishable with death or imprisonment for life:

If offence committed in consequences of abetment 7 years of imprisonment/ fine
If offence not committed in consequence of abetment 3 years of imprisonment/Fine



Section 119: Public servant concealing design to commit offence which it is his duty to present:

If offence committed in consequences of abetment ½ of the longest term of punishment provided for the offence / fine /both.
If offence not committed in consequence of abetment ¼ of the longest term of punishment provided for the offence / fine /both.
If offence committed whichis punishable with death or imprisonment for life 10 years of imprisonment.



Section 120: concealing design to commit offence punishable with imprisonment:

If offence committed in consequences of abetment ¼ of the longest term of punishment provided for the offence / fine /both.
If offence not committed in consequence of abetment 1/8 of the longest term of punishment provided for the offence / fine /both.


Case Laws:

  1. SheoDail Mal, 1894:

    This case held that instigation may be direct or it may be through letter. Where A writes a letter to B instigating thereby to murder C, the offence of abetment by instigation is complete as soon as the contents of letter becomes now to B.
     
  2. Queen vs Mohit:

    A women prepared herself to become sutti in the presence of the accused persons. They followed herupto the pyre and stood by her step sons crying “Ram Ram”. One of the accused also admitted that he told the women to say “Ram Ram”. It was held that all those that followed her to the pyre and stood by her crying “Ram Ram” would be guilty of abetment as the actively abetted her.
     
  3. Pandala Venkatasami 1881:

    It was held that if a person prepares, in counjuction with others a copy of an intented false document and buys a stamp paper for the purpose of writing such a false document and also ask for information as to fact to be inserted in such false document, he would be guilty for abetment of forgery because these are the acts done to facilitate the commission of the offence.


Conclusion:
Abetment is said to be a substantive offence which is punishable in itself respective of the act abetted is committed or not. When any act is done as a consequences of instigation, conspiracy and aid, the person performing such act is held liable under Indian Penal Code, 1860 but the person behind the commission of an act will also be held liable for abetment as the instigation for such commission has been done by that person.

Therefore , we say that abetment as an offence is just and fair law which enhances the principle of natural justice in legal system. As explained above there are four stages of crime and abetment may take place at initial level of planning and punishable with that of imprisonment or fine or both as may be expressed in the provision.

Law Article in India

Ask A Lawyers

You May Like

Legal Question & Answers



Lawyers in India - Search By City

Copyright Filing
Online Copyright Registration


LawArticles

Section 482 CrPc - Quashing Of FIR: Guid...

Titile

The Inherent power under Section 482 in The Code Of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (37th Chapter of th...

How To File For Mutual Divorce In Delhi

Titile

How To File For Mutual Divorce In Delhi Mutual Consent Divorce is the Simplest Way to Obtain a D...

Whether Caveat Application is legally pe...

Titile

Whether in a criminal proceeding a Caveat Application is legally permissible to be filed as pro...

The Factories Act,1948

Titile

There has been rise of large scale factory/ industry in India in the later half of nineteenth ce...

Constitution of India-Freedom of speech ...

Titile

Explain The Right To Freedom of Speech and Expression Under The Article 19 With The Help of Dec...

Copyright: An important element of Intel...

Titile

The Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) has its own economic value when it puts into any market ...

Lawyers Registration
Lawyers Membership - Get Clients Online


File caveat In Supreme Court Instantly