Indian Penal Code- Abetment – Section. 107 to 120.


INDIAN PENAL CODE , 1860 – Section 96 to106

Abetment Meaning:- Encourage or assist (someone) to do something wrong, in particular to commit a crime.

abetment part 1


  1. Abetment by Instigation
  2. Abetment by Conspiracy; AND
  3. Abetment by Aid.


Will full misrepresentation and will full concealment of material fact amounts to Abetment by Instigation.

instigate in abetment


In Abetment by Aid, aid may be before the commission of the offence or at the time of committing an offence.


EXAMPLE 1: ‘A’ encouraged ‘B’ to go and kill ‘C’. Here, A- Abetter; B- Abetted; C- Victim. As, there is no separate punishment given by the Code. Whatever punishment given to the Abettor is also given to Abetted.

EXAMPLE 2: XYZ are friends. XYZ wants to kill A and went to K as he is a Superior and Knowledged person than XYZ for asking how to deal with A. K gives 3 better ideas to XYZ to kill A.

  1. Goes for morning walk so kidnap him.
  2. Potassium Cyanide.
  3. Chopping his head.

XYZ implements the third plan. XYZ was caught by police and XYZ enclose K’s name. Abetment was done by conspiracy as K abetted XYZ to kill A by giving 3 plans.

SECTION 108: Whoever intentionally or knowingly encourages the other to commit an offence is known as Abettor.

  • The person so encouraged is known as Abetted.
  • The person against whom the abetted offence has been committed is known as Victim.

EXPLANATION 1: Illegal omission also amounts to Abetment.

EXPLANATION 2: Mere Abetment is an offence.

EXPLANATION 3: Abetted person may not be capable by law for committing the offence.

EXPLANATION 4: Abetment of Abetment to commit an offence is also punishable.

EXPLANATION 5: There need not be face to face contact between the abettor and the abetted when it comes to Abetment of conspiracy.

ipc abetment


The entire concept of Punishment of Abetment can be explained with the help of 5 points:

  1. If the abetted offence is committed, both the Abettor and Abetted are liable to the same punishments unless code provides separate punishment to the abettor of the offence.
  2. If the abetted offence is not committed, only abettor is liable.
  3. If the abettor offence is one attracting death penalty or life imprisonment and not committed abettor would be given imprisonment for 7years and fine as punishment.
  4. In case of any other offence, if the abetted person doesn’t commit that offence, abettor would get up to 1/4th of the maximum punishment prescribed for that offence.
  5. If the abettor is a public servant he gets more punishment than an Ordinary abettor.

1. Instigation means to suggest, stimulate, provoke or encourage.

Sanju  vs.  State of M.P. AIR (2002) SC 1998.

Goura Venkat Reddy  vs.  AP. (2003) 12 SCC 469.

2. The presence of a person at the scene of the offence will amount to Abetment if it is intended to encourage the offence.

Barendar Kumar Ghosh  vs.  King Emperor, AIR (1952) P C 1.

3. In the context of Bride burning and Dowry related deaths,( Section 306) is often pressed into service. Hence also, there is instigating suicide by the victims.

Pavan Kumar  vs.  State of Haryana, AIR (1998) SC 958.

4. Constable who stood guarding the place where the Head Constable was committing Rape on a woman, was held Abettor.

Ram Kumar  vs.  Himachal Pradesh AIR (1995) SC 1965.

5.Difference between Abetment by Conspiracy under Section 120-A, ( is that under Section.107(2) abetment by, conspiracy) mere agreement to commit an offence is not enough. There should be an act or illegal omission in pursuance of that conspiracy. But under Section.120-A, mere agreement is punishable.

Pramah Nath Talukdar  vs.  Saroj Ranjan Sarkar. AIR (1962) SC 876.

6. Abetment by illegal commission is also abetment .

Kalicharan Ganguly’s Case 21 WR11.

7. In case of abetment by Aid, aided offence must be committed in order to make such aiding an offence under Section. 107(3).

CBI  vs.  B.C.Shukla ( Hawala Case) AIR (1998) SC 406.

8. When the substantive charge fails the charge of abetment also generally fails.

Hardhan Chakravarthy  vs.  Union Of India. AIR (1990) SC 1210.

9. Mere spectator to the exhibition of a blue-film cannot be treated as an abettor to the crime of obscenity.

Dr. B. Rosaiaha  vs.  State Of AP(1991) CrLJ 189SC


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