Forgery and Falsification of Documents

Forgery implies false document, signature or other imitation of the object of utility used with the intent to deceive another. Those who commit forgery are usually charged with the crime of fraud. Forgery can be of documents or a signature.

Section 463 states:

Whoever makes any false document or false electronic record or part of a document with intent to cause damage or injury, to the public or to any person, or to support any claim or title, or to cause any person to part with property, or to enter into any express or implied contract, or with intent to commit fraud or that fraud may be committed, commits forgery.

To invoke Section 463 of the Indian Penal Code, the following ingredients must be established –

(1) A person makes any document or part of a document

(2) The document or false electronic record or part of the document or electronic record must be false.

(3) His Intention is –
   (a) to cause damage or injury to the public or any person; or
   (b) to support any claim or title; or
   (c) to cause any person to part with his property; or
   (d) to enter into any express or implied contract; or
   (e) to commit any fraud or that fraud may be committed

So in simple words, if a person knowingly, with an intention to defraud another, make a false document or electronic record, he shall be tried for forgery.

Now, a false document is said to be made when:

  • A person tries to replicate a model signature or writing
  • Traces the original signature and reproduces it
  • By memory, replicates the signature or writing
  • Altering facts in a document
  • “Makes” documents through mechanical means

In the matter of: Md. Ibrahim & Others v. State of Bihar & Another, (2009) 8 SCC 751, it was held that, a person is said to have made a ‘false document’, if:

1. He made or executed a document claiming to be someone else or authorized by someone else; or,

2. He altered or tampered a document; or,

3. He obtained a document by practicing deception, or from a person not in control of his senses.

Sheila Sebastian V. R Jawaharaj 

Supreme Court, in this case, ruled that the command of forgery cannot be imposed on a person who is not a maker of the same. 

The court also held that until and unless the components of Section.463 are satisfied an individual can’t be convicted under section 465 by solely relying upon the ingredients of S.464, as an offence of forgery will remain incomplete. 

Section 465 of the Indian Penal Code describes Punishment for forgery. According to this section, whoever commits forgery shall be punished with imprisonment of jail term either description for a span which may extend to two years or with the penalty, or with both. Under IPC it is a non-cognizable offence. If the forgery is of a promissory note of the Central Government, then it is Cognizable.


Aishwarya Says:

I have always been against Glorifying Over Work and therefore, in the year 2021, I have decided to launch this campaign “Balancing Life”and talk about this wrong practice, that we have been following since last few years. I will be talking to and interviewing around 1 lakh people in the coming 2021 and publish their interview regarding their opinion on glamourising Over Work.

If you are interested in participating in the same, do let me know.

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