According to the Oxford lexicon, the word “Grievous Hurt” refers to any damage that puts an individual’s life in peril.
The code classifies hurt into basic and severe categories based on the magnitude and intensity of the physical attack perpetrated. As the term implies, grievous injury entails the inflicting of severe and more extreme suffering.
It is critical to divide hurt into simple and serious hurt because this categorization enables an accused to be punished according to the severity of his crime.
Section 320 of the IPC defines grievous injury and also identifies the types of hurt that should be classified as grievous. Section 320 states as follows:
Only the following types of hurt are classified as “grievous”:
2. Permanent impairment of vision or one of the eyes,
3. Irreversible deafness or damage to either eye
4. Privation of a member or joint (loss of limb),
5. Limb Impairment
6. Disfigurement of the head or face on a permanent basis
7. Bone or teeth fracture or dislocation
8. Any hurt that puts the victim’s life at danger or renders him unable to pursue his normal interests for a period of twenty days.
Elaboration of the various Components
This entails robbing a person of his virility. In basic terms, it refers to the act of rendering a man impotent. It can be induced by causing sufficient damage to a man’s scrotum that he becomes impotent. The resulting impotence must be permanent and not treatable or transient. This was added under the eight headings to address the widespread habit in India of women squeezing men’s testicles in response to the smallest provocation.
Permanent Impairment of either eye’s vision
In basic terms, it refers to a permanent impairment of vision. It should be borne in mind that such injury should result in a permanent inability to use one or both eyes. Gravity is demonstrated by the lifelong impairment of vision and disfigurement of the individual.
Permanent deafness in either ear
This entails the infliction of deafness. It might be thought of as the ability of both ears and one ear to hear indefinitely. It has the terrible consequence of robbing someone of his ability to listen. It is worth noting that the impairment of hearing must be permanent in order to trigger this clause. Even a hit to the head may result in deafness.
Privation of any individual or joint
It alludes to a person’s loss of a member or joint, which leaves him defenceless and depressed. It causes the individual to suffer for the rest of his or her life. The term member refers to a limb or organ, whereas the term joint refers to a region where two or more bones touch or a muscle mass is included. There should be a permanent damage to a limb, organ, or joint that renders it permanently stiff or unable of performing its daily allocated duty within the human structure.
Destroying or permanently damaging any member or joint
It refers to the impairment of a member, limb, or joint. It is a term that alludes to debilitating, which implies the creation of a permanent impairment. Additionally, it entails permanent disability. The provision refers to the permanent loss of a member’s or joint’s power, resulting in a deprivation of the member’s or joint’s ability to encompass its specific purpose. It’s worth noting that any persistent reduction in their utility represents grave injury.
Disfigurement of the head or face on a permanent basis
‘Disfigure’ is to injure someone externally in such a way that he loses his personal appearance but does not become weaker. For instance, dumping acid on a woman’s face results in a lasting scar, which amounts to disfigurement. In the landmark case of Gangaram v. State of Rajasthan(3), it was held that “cutting at the bridge of a woman’s nostrils with a sharp weapon was held to be everlasting disfigurement, despite the fact that the inner wall remained intact, the act constituted permanent disfigurement within the meaning of this clause, and thus the injury was grievous.”
A bone or teeth fracture or dislocation
Although a fracture or dislocated bone may be repaired, set, or reconnected, it is included among the eight types of severe harm owing to the great suffering it causes an individual. To attract this portion, the fracture must extend to the inner surface; just wearing the section will not result in fracture underneath it. The bone must be broken.
Any injury that puts the sufferer’s life in jeopardy or renders him unable to carry on his normal activities for a period of twenty days.
It is typically referred to as hazardous pain. It is defined as physical discomfort that is severe enough to prevent a person from engaging in normal living activities for twenty days.
Punishment for causing Grevious Hurt
Punishment for grievous Hurt (Section 325)
It stipulates that if a person intentionally and voluntarily causes serious bodily hurt to another person, he faces up to seven years in jail. Additionally, the individual may be accountable for the fine.
Punishment for deliberately inflicting serious bodily harm with a hazardous weapon (Section 326)
This section contains a list of devices capable of inflicting severe bodily hurt. This can be accomplished by shooting, stabbing, or cutting. Additionally, any hurt caused by explosive or dangerous substance falls under this category. The individual charged under this section shall be sentenced to a maximum of ten years in prison or a fine, or both.
Punishment for inflicting serious bodily hurt by the use of Acid (Section 326 A)
Acid attack is a severe offence for which this clause provides a penalty. It stipulates that if a person causes grave damage by throwing acid, he faces a minimum term of ten years, which can be increased to life imprisonment, a fine, or a combination of the two. The fine collected according to this clause is paid to the victim to cover medical expenses.
Punishment for knowingly inflicting serious bodily hurt in order to extort property (Section 329)
Any individual who causes serious harm with the intent to extort property shall face a penalty of up to ten years in prison, a fine, or both.
Punishment for Intentionally causing serious harm in order to compel property restoration (Section 331)
This section specifies the penalty for circumstances in which a person inflicts grave damage on another person while claiming or recovering his property via force. The defendant faces up to ten years in jail, a fine, or both.
Punishment for causing grave hurt to a public servant in order to prevent him from doing his duties (Section 333)
This section applies only to those employed in the public sector. Thus, anybody who causes grave harm to a public official or hinders him from carrying out his lawful duties faces a ten-year prison sentence or both.
Punishment for serious bodily hurt committed in response to provocation (Section 335)
This section discusses situations in which a person inflicts serious damage on another person as a result of provocation, rage, or during a heated debate. Because it is not premeditated, the severity of the sentence is lessened. Anyone found guilty of violating this clause faces a four-year jail sentence, a fine, or both.
Punishment for recklessly inflicting grave hurt that endangers the lives of others (Section 338)
The primary purpose of this clause is to penalise people who behave recklessly or negligently in order to inflict grave damage to another person. The penalty is simple imprisonment, which may be increased to two years, or a fine, or both.
- Sections of Indian Penal Code (IPC)
- Hurt and Grevious Hurt in Indian Context, J Indian Acad Forensic Med.
- 1964 (279) RLW (RAJ)
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