To attract the provision of abetment of suicide, there must be allegation that the accused had instigated the deceased to commit suicide, the Bombay High Court has held.
A division bench of Justices Ranjit More and V L Achiliya quashed a case registered against Kishor Shinde, Assistant Engineer with Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Ltd (MSEDC), for allegedly abetting the suicide of a junior technician Dilip Magar.
As per the prosecution, on March 20, 2014, Dilip Magar and S B Bhamgar, both technicians with MSEDC, had gone to shut down a high tension wire at Hadapsar. Bhamgar climbed the electric pole but suffered high voltage shock and died on April 4 in hospital. Magar, who was mentally disturbed due to this incident, committed suicide on April 8.
In his suicide letter, Magar said he was greatly disturbed mentally by his friend and colleague's death. The letter also mentioned that their seniors Shinde and two others were allegedly harassing them for not working properly. Following this, a case was registered against Shinde and the two others for abetting the suicide of Magar.
Shinde then approached the HC seeking quashing of the case.
"In order to attract the provisions of section 306 of IPC (abetment to suicide), there must be an allegation that accused had instigated the deceased to commit suicide and that the accused had in any way aided any act or illegal omission to bring about the suicide," the court said in its order earlier this month.
"An intention to bring about the suicide of the person concerned as a result of that abetment is required. The intention of the accused to aid or to instigate or to abet the deceased to commit suicide is a must for this particular offence under section 306 of IPC," the bench said.
The court noted that in this case, Magar was mentally shocked due to the death of his colleague and there was nothing to suggest that Shinde had instigated Magar to commit suicide. "Abetment to suicide involves a mental process of instigating a person. Without a positive act on the part of the accused to instigate or aid in committing suicide, the offence under section 306 of IPC cannot be said to have been made out," the court said.