Arjun vs. State Of Maharashtra (2012) : Case Summary

Arjun vs. State Of Maharashtra

Author : Sreelakshmi M A

CITATION:   Crl appeal No 356/2007 (supreme court of India)

BENCH: K.S. Radhakrishnan, Dipak Misra


This is a criminal appeal case from Bombay high court against the conviction of the first accused of a murder case (appellant here). The charges against accused are under section 302 and 326 of IPC. There is question of private defence under section 99 of IPC in this case and the court is in apposition to determine the liability of accused appellant.


There was a conflict between the appellant and the deceased regarding a property. A civil suit was also filed for the same by the appellant for the injunction and getting procession of said property. The appellant who was in army came to his place and started a stationary shop there.

The crime took place on 30.7.2002 while an annual fare was happening in that village (Taklimanur).  On that day, when the deceased came in front of the appellant’s shop, the appellant abused the deceased. After this incident, while the deceased, his wife and son were on the way to the nearby temple, the accused appellant and his brothers came and attacked the deceased on the road. They had weapons like knife, axe and big sticks with them. When the wife of deceased came for rescuing him, the appellant inflicted blows on her head and shoulders and she fell down. The deceased was kill at the spot itself and the others were taken in to the hospital nearby.

PW 1, the son of the deceased lodged a complaint and the FIR was filed. All the accused were caught and the appellant confessed and the knife was recovered.

But the appellant took the defence in the court that there was pressure in him from the side of deceased for withdraw the civil suit. He also contented that there was previous rivalry between the deceased and accused and in the fight the accused also sustained severe injuries which was not mentioned by the prosecution side.

The appellant side pleaded for private defence.


1. Whether the plea of private defence can be claimed?

2. Whether the decision of the high court needs to be revised?

 The right of private defence is available only when there is a reasonable apprehension of receiving injury. The person asking for private defence under section 99 of IPC should have at the time of attack, a reasonable cause of fear that there may have chances to occur his death or grievous hurt. Also it is the duty of the accused to bring out the positive evidences to prove his case where a plea of private defence is raised.

The right of private defence should not be based on speculations. There must be strong belief and fear of death or a grievous hurt to be caused to the person raising the plea of private defence.


In this case the accused appellant failed to prove his part and hence the court was not convinced with the pea of the defence council.

Hence the supreme court confirmed the decision of high court and the appeal was dismissed.

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