Prabhakar Vithal Gholve Vs. State of Maharashtra, on 6th May 2016, Supreme Court of India: Case Brief – Read Judgement

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When there is no motive to cause death; the Exception 1 and 4 to Section 300 of IPC applicable and He be convicted only for Culpable Homicide Not Amounting to Murder

Criminal Appeal No. 448 of 2016
Bench: Justice Dipak Mishra; Justice Shiva Kirti Singh

Case Brief: In the present matter, the appellant here has brought the challenge against the impugned judgement and order of the High Court, which has dismissed the appeal of the appellant against his conviction for an offence under section 302 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 and sentence of life imprisonment and fine of Rs. 1000 awarded by the Trial Court. The main controversy brought under this appeal is that the counsel for appellant here submitted as to issue that “whether conviction of the appellant under said provision is justified and lawful when the prosecution failed to allege and prove any motive for the assault upon the deceased at the hands of the appellant and another juvenile.” As such, the appellant here claimed the conviction could be best be valid under Section 304 Part I of the code. This bench, after overall examining the facts and circumstances and also relevant evidences in the case, and took a broad view of the facts that shows it is abundantly clear that the occurrence originated on account of some minor grievance against a lady that she did not covey a telephonic message to the appellant. Though the appellant here sustained two injuries as per medical evidence by some persons from the prosecution party also received injuries on account of assault. Sticks were involved for committing crime by appellant and juvenile offender and for causing injuries on the head of the deceased who died due to such assault. In the given scenario and facts, the bench found it safe to arrive at inference that there was no intention on the part of the accused persons to cause death. However, the injuries on head did prove fatal and knowledge of such effect of the injuries can be fastened against the appellant.

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As such, the bench found merits in the submissions of the learned counsel for the appellant that the case comes under Exception 1 and Exception 4 to Section 300 of the Code and it is as such the case of ‘culpable homicide’ not amounting to murder. The said assault on the deceased is here taken by this bench to considered as caused could be on account of sudden fight without premeditation. As such, the conviction of Appellant here under section 302 is set aside and it is replaced with the conviction under section 304 part I of the Code. As the appellant had already suffered the sentence of over 12 years, the bench decided to reduced the life imprisonment sentence to the period already undergone by appellant. As such, appeal allowed.

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Read the Judgement: Prabhakar Vithal Gholve Vs. State of Maharashtra

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