Right of Private Defence against Deadly Assault when there is Risk of Harm to Innocent Person - IPC Section 106

Right of Private Defence against Deadly Assault when there is Risk of Harm to Innocent Person - IPC Section 106

In criminal law, self-help is the first rule. Each citizen has the right to private defence over his or her body as well as properties under the Indian Penal Code of 1860. An Indian law that governs the right to private defence of person or property is covered in sections 96 to 106 of the IPC.

Protecting individuals' life and properties is the state's foremost responsibility. However, the government cannot monitor every individual citizen's every move. In some cases, when an individual or property is at risk, even the state may be unable to assist them promptly. In light of the above, the Indian Penal Code has provided every citizen the right to defend his or her own life as well as property.

Illustration: There may be a circumstance where a person's right to private defence is incompatible with causing the death of another person, such as when A is attacked by a mob who attempts to murder him. He can't effectively exercise his right to self-defense without firing on the mob, but he can't fire without harming the mob's young kids. Even when a child is harmed as a result of his firing, he commits no crime.

Private Defense Rights: "The Right of Private Defense" is "obviously needed for the human defence of his or her life, liberty, and property," according to Bentham.

The legislation regarding the right of private defence of people and property is covered under sections 96 to 106 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860. The above regulations of the Indian Penal Code give a person the power to use appropriate force against an offender (required force, in this case, must be reasonable) for such means of defending one's body as well as property, and the body and property of someone else, when immediate assistance from the state machinery is not easily obtainable, and he is not held legally responsible for his actions.

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In case of force used more than required: Whenever the act of private defense entails inflicting more injury than is necessary anymore for the cause of defense:

The right to self-defense is limited to causing no more injury than is required for the protection. All facts and circumstances must be taken into account in order to establish the degree of force that was required. There really is no safeguard in place in the event that the injury is caused excessively and for a longer period than is necessary. For example, when someone is about to smack you, you cannot defend yourself with a weapon. There is no punishment if the person exercises his right to private defense but in case if the person exceeds his limit it gets over the court to take the case in the required manner. 

There have also been times when the amount of force used was excessive. Here are a few examples:

  1. Someone murdered an elderly woman who had been caught stealing late at night.

  2. A thief was apprehended and killed with a chop late at night.

  3. The thief was apprehended entering into people's homes and was brutally punished.

Depending on the circumstances of each instance, the right to private defense emerges whenever an offender strikes or when there is a realistic fear of severe harm. However, such a right does not extend to causing greater harm than is required for defense.

How to defend a case under section 106?

In case of section 106 of IPC while the person is defending his case, then he must hire a lawyer and work accordingly upon the case as this case may depend on facts and circumstances of the case where the court will see that whether the force applied in order to defend himself or herself was reasonable or not?  &, during your hearing in a court of law, an expert lawyer will work hard to defend your issue and will almost certainly help you, either by getting you out of the case or by lowering your sentence.

Circumstances where the right to private defense can be exercised

According to the Supreme Court of India, a person's ability to private defence cannot be utilized when they have a chance to pursue remedies then there is no need to take the matter into their own hand.

This will not imply instead of defending himself, a person must flee in order to seek help from the authorities.

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Important Judgements: The Supreme Court stated in the case of Jai Dev v. Punjab as "in a civilised society, every state is presumed to look after the body and property of each Person." This will not, though, imply that if someone is unexpectedly assaulted, they must flee and defend themselves. He has the right to fight back and defend himself.”

There could be - 

  1. An immediate threat to a person and property that, although not safeguarded quickly, will be lost by the moment public servant assistance is received.

  2. Reasonable fear of harm to oneself or property derives from a crime that has been done, attempted, or threatening. The conduct was going to have an impact on people and property, and thus justified the hurt that was done. then the right of private defense can be exercised. 

Conclusion: Nearly every single country in the world now provides for the right to private defence. Every individual's right to defend his or her body as well as property, and also the property of someone else, is unalienable. It is not a crime if someone acts in this behavior. It is indeed a right that everyone has, subject to limitations and restrictions. In lieu of private defence, the law has given everyone the reason to cause death in certain circumstances, as specified in section 106 of the Indian penal code, 1860. That's because the law recognizes that each and every individual's first responsibility is to protect themselves. Whenever something goes wrong, the law will be incapable of helping someone who is incapable of helping himself.

This article on IPC Section 106 is written by Mr. Abhinav Kumar, a Final year student at the University of Petroleum and Energy Studies, Dehradun.
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