IPC 103 When the right of private defence of property extends to causing death

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INDIAN PENAL CODE,1860

SECTION 103 WHEN THE RIGHT OF PRIVATE DEFENCE OF PROPERTY EXTENDS TO CAUSING DEATH

Under section 103 of Indian Penal Code,1860,the right of private defence of property extends, under the restrictions mentioned in section 99, to the voluntary causing of death or of any other harm to the wrong-doer,if the offence ,the committing of which, or the attempting to commit which, occasions the exercise of right, be an offence of any description that is hereby enumerated: First-robbery; Secondly-house breaking by night; Thirdly-mischief by fire committed on any building, tent or vessel, which building, tent or vessel is used as a human dwelling or as a place for the custody of property; Fourthly-theft, mischief or house trespass, under such circumstances as may reasonably cause apprehension that death or grievous hurt will be the consequence if such right of private defence is not exercised. This section talks about the private defence of property only. Section 103 is covered under Chapter IV of INDIAN PENAL CODE,1860 which contains GENERAL EXCEPTIONS.

STATE AMENDMENTS (a)KARNATAKA In section 103, 1.In clause third- (i)after the words “mischief by fire” insert the words “any explosive substance” shall be inserted. (ii)after the words “as a human dwelling or” insert the words “as a place of worship or”. 2.In clause fourth- After the case fourth insert the clause, fifthly-mischief by fire or any explosive substance committed on any property used or intended to be used for the purpose of Government or any local authority, statutory body or company owned or controlled by Government or railway or any vehicle used or adapted to be used for the carriage of passengers for hire or reward. Vide Karnataka Act no.8 of 1972, section 2, (w.e.f 7-10-1972) (b)MAHARASHTRA In section 103, add the following clause, fifthly-mischief by fire or any explosive substance committed on any property used or intended to be used for the purpose of Government or any local authority, statutory body or company owned or controlled by Government or railway or any vehicle used or adapted to be used for the carriage of passengers for hire or reward. Vide Maharashtra Act no.19 of 1971, section 26, (w.e.f 31-12-1971) (c)UTTAR PRADESH In section 103, add the following clause, fifthly-mischief by fire or any explosive substance committed on- (i)any property used or intended to be used for Government, or any local authority or other corporation owned or controlled by Government or, (ii)any railway as defined in clause (4) of section 3 of Indian Railways Act, 1890 or railway stores as defined under Railways Stores(unlawful possession)Act, 1955 or, (c)any transport vehicle as defined in clause (33) of section 2 of Motor Vehicles Act, 1939. Vide U.P Act no. 29 of 1970, section 2(w.e.f 17-7-1970) [1]

CASE LAW

Supreme Court of India

Mohinder Pal Jolly vs State of Punjab on 14 December, 1978

In this case deceased worker and some of his colleagues were shouting slogans in support of their demands outside the factory premises. Some brick-bats were hurled by them which damaged the property of the accused owner of the factory, who fired two shots from outside his office room, one of which killed the deceased worker.

It was held that since it was a case of simple mischief being committed by the workers including the deceased, the accused was not entitled to claim right of private defence under section 103 of the Code. Mischief was caused to his property but it was not caused under such circumstances as may reasonably cause apprehension in his mind that death or grievous hurt would be the consequence if such right of private defence was not exercised. A mere claim of such apprehension is not enough. The court on objective test and on the facts and circumstances of each case must arrive at the conclusion that the situation was such as was likely to reasonably cause apprehension. indiankanoon.org/doc/153251/


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