An infallible attempt without malicious intent, written by Diksha Sharma, a student at Government Law College, Mumbai
Ananta Kamilya against the state of West Bengal
Ananta Kamilya injured the head of the deceased by Lathi after a violent argument, due to which the deceased was taken to various hospitals and died after 7 days. The applicant turned to the Supreme Court for relief after being violated by the Calcutta Supreme Court ruling that dismissed the applicant’s complaint and found the accused guilty of the offense committed under Section 302 of the IPC.
Was the applicant guilty of the murder?
• Section 300 of India’s Criminal Code – Murder
• Section 302 of the Indian Criminal Code – Punishment for Murder
• Section 304 of the Indian Criminal Code – Punishment for culpable murder other than murder
Allegation of the complainant:
The learned attorney argued that the accused had no intention of inflicting serious injury that could ultimately have resulted in the death of the deceased, implying that the crime committed was not murder. In addition, it was alleged that the deceased died after 7 days, despite being taken to several different hospitals. Therefore, it was asked that the defendant be tried under either Part I or Part II of Section 304 of the IPC.
Statement of the respondent:
The West Bengal State learned attorney who backed the High Court of Calcutta’s ruling believed that injury to a vital part of the body could be fatal and the offense committed would therefore be considered under Section 300 of the IPC, so was prayed for the appeal to reject.
Comments from the Court:
The court, after examining the facts and the judgment of the High Court, found that the defendant was not wearing a lathi but was present at the scene of the incident. It was only because of a violent argument that the defendant spontaneously struck a lathi blow on the head of the deceased, who was broken after the injury. Despite this serious injury, he was taken to the police station and other hospitals and eventually died after the 7th day. This shows the severity of the injury, meaning that death was the result of injury in an argument. Therefore, the case would fall under exception 4 to section 300.
Viewed from all angles of the scenario, the accused is not guilty of murder and can be punished under Section 304 Part I of the IPC, which gives him a 10-year prison sentence.