[Landmark Judgement] Bishna V. State of W.B. (2005) 

Landmark Judgment Law Insider (1)

Published on: 12 September 2023 at 17:07 IST

Court: Supreme Court of India

Citation: Bishna V. State of W.B. (2005) 

Honourable Supreme Court of India has opined that private defence as enumerated under the Chapter IV of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 and prevention of crime are sometimes indistinguishable in the reporting of the crime. It is submitted that circumstances in the event of invocation of private defence are required to be viewed with pragmatism and any hypertechnical approach should be avoided to understand the real situation which might have occurred.

85. Private defence can be used to ward off unlawful force, to prevent unlawful force, to avoid unlawful detention and to escape from such detention. So far as defence of land against trespasser is concerned, a person is entitled to use necessary and moderate force both for preventing the trespass or to eject the trespasser. For the said purposes, the use of force must be the minimum necessary or reasonably believed to be necessary. A reasonable defence would mean a proportionate defence. Ordinarily, a trespasser would be first asked to leave and if the trespasser fights back, a reasonable force can be used.

86. Defence of dwelling house, however, stands on a different footing. The law has always looked with special indulgence on a man who is defending his dwelling against those who would unlawfully evict him; as for ‘the house of every one is to him as his castle and fortress’.

Drafted By Abhijit Mishra

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