Kerala High Court Grants Appeal for Accused Pleading Insanity in Parents’ Murder

Kerala HC Law Insider

LI Network

Published on: February 1, 2024 at 11:20 IST

A divisional bench comprising Justice PB Suresh Kumar and Justice Johnson John allowed the appeal, asserting that the “prosecution has not established the motive of the accused to cause the death of his parents. Similarly, the accused has not made any attempt to run away from the scene after causing the death of his parents.”

The accused, the younger son of the victims, faced charges under Section 302 of the IPC for murder following an incident on September 30, 2015.

The defense argued that the accused had been grappling with mental health issues for about two decades. Despite the lower court rejecting the plea of insanity and finding the accused guilty under Section 302 IPC, the High Court considered the medical history of the accused.

The Court scrutinized the accused’s medical records, which revealed admissions to the Government Mental Health Centre for psychosis and paranoid schizophrenia treatment.

Notably, the accused had been admitted both before and after the incident, reflecting a history of mental health struggles.

The critical issue addressed by the court was the accused’s capacity to comprehend the nature of his actions due to unsoundness of mind. The court examined the accused’s conduct during and immediately after the offense.

The bench acknowledged that the accused, while not sociable, had shown love and respect for his parents. Despite the absence of a proven motive and the accused not attempting to flee, the court, considering the unique circumstances, granted the appellant the benefit of Section 84 IPC.

Based on the lack of immediate flight, the accused’s affection towards his parents, and the absence of a proven motive, the court allowed the appeal and accorded immunity under Section 84 of the IPC, which pertains to persons of unsound mind.

Case Title: Shine Kumar v. State of Kerala

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