Act done by several persons in furtherance of common intention

Common intention:

Section 34 of the IPC, When a criminal act is done by several persons in furtherance of the common intention of all, each of such person is liable for that act in the same manner as if were done by him alone.

Explanation:

Under Section 34 of the IPC, the common intention is present which states that several people commit any crime with the furtherance of shared intention to do that crime. Each of the people is liable as of the crime is committed by him also.

Common intention implies a pre – arranged plan and act according to the plan. There must not be a long gap between planning and implementation of the plan.

Ingredients:

1. A criminal act must be done by several persons.

2. There must be a common intention of all to commit that criminal act.

3. There must be participation of all the in the commission of the offence in furtherance of that common intention.

Illustration:

If six people agree to a plan of Mr. X, Mr. A is in charge of going inside the house in order to steal from it. During this course, Mr. A also injuries Mr. X. Therefore, all the other five people would be liable to the extend that they planned and not the crime committed by Mr. A.

 Members:

The number of persons present must be more than one.

Meeting of minds:

Prior meeting of the mind is necessary.

Exception- Kripal Singh vs the State of UP

Liability:

All the persons involved are liable equally. Hence active participation is not necessary.

Offence:

Does not specify any offence but states a rule of law.

Case laws:

Barendra kumar ghosh V. king emperor, AIR 1925 PC 1.

In this case several persons appeared before the sub – post master who was counti9ng the money on the table and demanded the money. In the mean time they opened fire killed the sub – post master and ran away without taking any money. Barendra kumar was however, caught with a pistol in his hand and was handed over to the police. Barendra contended that he was merely standing as a guard but the court convicted him for murder under section 302 r/w section 34 of the IPC, 1860.after that appeal was rejected when he appealed by privy council.

Pandurang Vs. state of Hyderabad AIR 1955 SC 216.

The Hon’ble court observed:

In a case like that each would be individually be liable for the whatever injury he caused but none would be vicariously convicted for the acts of any of the others; if the prosecution cannot prove that his separate blow was a fatal one, he cannot be convicted of the murder was proved.

•Dacoity with murder:

Section 396 of the IPC , the death penalty as a possible form of punishment for all persons who are held guilty of committing Dacoity, if any one of those five or more persons commits murder while committing Dacoity. For the offence of Dacoity to be made to, five or more persons should be concerned in the commission of the offence, unlike section 34 of the IPC, there is no requirement to show common intention to commit murder to sentence persons under section 396.

Criminal act in furtherance of common intention does not mean “common intention to all” or “intention common to all”.

Israr V. State of Uttar Pradesh , the appellant accused was convicted under section 302 read with section 34who had restrained movement of the deceased, held him while co – accused inflicted knife blow.

While dismissing the appeal and upholding the conviction of appellant – accused under section 302 with section 34, the apex court said that the essence of criminal liability under section 34, IPC is the existence of a common intention in furtherance of a criminal act and not common intention to all or intention common to all. As a result, when an accused is convicted under section 302 read with section 34, in law it means that the accused is liable for the act which caused death of the deceased in the same manner as if he did it alone.

The provision is intended to meet a case in which it may be difficule to distinguish between acts to individual members of a party who acts in furtherance of the common intention of all or to prove exactly what part was taken by each of them.

Conclusion:

In the concept of common intention, sometimes there arises the difficulty in proving with the evidence that whether they shared common intention or not, al0ong with the how many people were the members of unlawful assembly with their common object as same.

However, with the change in the level of crimes amendments were made. Even after so much of effort, there arise problems of which laws will be applicable. Some crucial cases and investigators, charge sheet filers make mistake of this regard.

Aishwarya Says:

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