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Woman Can’t be Held for Abetting Suicide if ‘Lover’ Ends Life Due to ‘Love Failure’: Delhi Court

For the wrong decision taken by a man of ‘weak or frail mentality’, another person cannot be blamed, says the court

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Staff Writer, TLR

Published on April 17, 2024, 16:05:42

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Delhi high court, suicide, love failure, fir

The Delhi High Court has recently observed that if a “lover” dies by suicide due to “love failure”, then the woman cannot be held responsible for abetting the man’s suicide while granting ‘pre-arrest’ (anticipatory) bail to a woman and a man.

An FIR was registered by a man alleging that the two applicants had abetted his son’s suicide. The woman was stated to be in a romantic relationship with the deceased while the other applicant was stated to be a common friend.

A single-judge bench of Justice Amit Mahajan, in its April 16 order, held, “If a lover commits suicide due to love failure, if a student commits suicide because of his poor performance in the examination, a client commits suicide because his case is dismissed, the lady, examiner, lawyer respectively cannot be held to have abetted the commission of suicide.

For the wrong decision taken by a man of weak or frail mentality, another person cannot be blamed as having abetted his committing suicide.”
When the body of the deceased was found by his mother in his room, a “suicide note” was also recovered in which he had written that he was ending his life because of the applicants.

Justice Mahajan said that a bare reading of Indian Penal Code (IPC) Section 306 (abetment of suicide) demonstrates that there are twin requirements – suicide and abetment to commit suicide.

The court said “prima facie” from the WhatsApp chats placed on record, it appeared that the deceased was of “sensitive nature and constantly threatened” the female applicant of ending life whenever she refused to talk to him.

The court also noted that the two applicants were granted interim protection last year pursuant to which they joined the investigation.

“It is correct that the deceased had written the name of the applicants in suicide note, but, in the opinion of this court, there is nothing mentioned, as to the nature of threats in the alleged suicide note written by the deceased of such an alarming proportion so as to drive a ‘normal person’ to contemplate suicide,” the high court said.

The court noted that prima facie the alleged suicide note “only expressed a state of anguish” of the deceased towards the applicants, but it “cannot be inferred that the applicants had any intention”, that led the deceased to commit suicide.

“The allegation with respect to applicants teasing the deceased in regards to the failure of his romantic relationship with the (female) applicant…however, does not appear to be instigation which would amount to abetment of suicide in terms of Section 306 IPC. The factum of the alleged suicide note and whether there was any instigation by the applicants will be seen in trial,” the high court underscored.

It was alleged that a scuffle took place between the deceased and the applicants after he saw them together and asked why they were meeting. During the altercation, the deceased sustained injuries and the applicants allegedly damaged his car by throwing bricks. It was also said that while the deceased was leaving the place, the applicants allegedly instigated him by saying they had made “physical relations with each other and will get married soon”.

The woman argued that she had been falsely implicated, and except for her name mentioned in the alleged suicide note of the deceased, there was nothing to show that “he was prompted, forced and instigated by these persons to commit suicide”.

Meanwhile the police alleged that offence committed by the two applicants is “heinous in nature” and the names of both the applicants were written in suicide note, because of whom the deceased died by suicide. The police said that the CCTV footage from the location where the deceased had met with the applicants was also obtained in which the deceased and the male applicant can be seen in a scuffle.

The high court held that custodial interrogation of the applicants is not required. It said that in the event of arrest, the applicants will be released on bail on furnishing a personal bond of Rs50,000 each with two sureties each of the like amount subject to certain conditions.

The court also said that in case the applicants violate the conditions mentioned in the order, the police would be free to move a plea for cancelling their bail. The court, however, clarified that the observations in its order are made to decide the pre-arrest bail applications of the two persons, should not influence the outcome of the trial, and should not be taken as an expression of opinion on the merits of the case.

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