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Case Analysis: State Of Madhya Pradesh v/s Kanha Alias Omprakash

Introduction: On 8th October 2003 an altercation took place between two parties. The respondent, to kill Dashrath Singh, shot him with a firearm and caused bleeding injuries on his right thigh. The brother of Dashrath Singh filed a complaint on the same day at Gwalior Police Station.

It was stated in the complaint that there was an enmity between the parties over a love marriage which was opposed by the families as well as a dispute over a disc cable connection business. The allegation against the accused was that armed with deadly weapons they formed an illegal assembly with a common motive of causing harm to the injured.

The judgement of the High Court was set aside and the order of conviction was restored by the trial court under Section 307 of the Penal Code as well as the sentence awarded of rigorous imprisonment of 3 years and a fine of Rs.1000. The appeal was accordingly allowed.

Background:
After referring to several judgements such as State of Maharashtra v. Balram Bama Patil, State of M.P v. Saleem, and Jage Ram v. State of Haryana led to the conclusion that "proof of grievous or life threatening hurt is not a sine qua non for the offence under Section 307 of the Penal Code. The intention of the accused can be ascertained from the actual injury, if any, as well as from surrounding circumstances. Among other things, the nature of the weapon used and the severity of the blows inflicted can be considered to infer intent".

Analysis:
The writer disagrees with the conclusion made by the Court in paragraph 13 of the case which says that “proof of grievous or life-threatening hurt is not a sine qua non for the offence under Section 307 of the Penal Code” as it was given in Jage Ram v. State of Haryana where the Court in State of Madhya Pradesh v. Kanha alias Omprakash took reference from that the nature of the injury is one of the circumstances which has been given in Jage Ram case to find out the intention of the accused before making the accused guilty of the act under Section 307 of the Indian Penal Code. By looking at the nature of the injury as one of the circumstances the Court convicted the second appellant under Section 307 IPC and this was unable to be questioned.

Sine Qua Non means a necessary condition without which something is not possible. In the State of Maharashtra v. Balram Bama Patil, the “nature of injury may often give considerable assistance in coming to a finding as to the intention of the accused”. This can be one of the necessary conditions to hold the accused liable for the act.

Therefore, the High court was wrong in saying that the proof of grievous or life-threatening hurt is not necessary as it may become necessary according to Balram Bama Patil case and nature of injury became one of the circumstances under Jage Ram v.State of Haryana case. This is why the writer disagrees with the conclusion that “proof of grievous or life threatening hurt is not a sine qua non for the offence under Section 307 of the Penal Code”.

The decision of the trial Court was appropriate and conforms with the existing law. The reasoning was consistent with the previous reasoning in similar cases such as Jage Ram v. State of Haryana as circumstances such as nature of the weapon, the weapon used, and injury were looked into just like in this case the accused was convicted as the firearm caused eleven punctured wounds and there was bleeding and Pasupuleti Siva case where it was held that the intention to cause death was attributable to accused since the victim was strangulated after throwing telephonic wire around his neck and letting him die. This case followed on similar lines like these two cases.

Conclusion:
The trial court set aside the judgement of the High Court and was right in doing so by clearly examining from a deeper point of view like weapon used and not just convict under Section 324 of the Indian Penal Code for simple hurt. The writer felt it was a lot more than that. This was a grave offense and the Trial Court was right in setting aside the High Court’s judgment. The omission led to the strengthening of the decision instead of weakening.

This will have a policy implication and encourage courts to examine such cases from a broader point of view and the writer truly agrees with the decision of the trial court in this case

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