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Character assassination by a few greedy men & women common in society; It affects individuals

Character assassination by a few greedy men & women common in society; It affects individuals

Balasubramaniyan Vs The State

Madras HC


CRL OP(MD). No.12606 of 2020

About/from the judgment:

The High Court observed that "assassination of character in a male-dominated community is common. The assassination of character even among the same gender is also prevailing in our country."


The Court was hearing the bail plea of the petitioner/sole accused, who was arrested and remanded to judicial custody for the offence punishable under 306 of IPC on the file of the respondent police.


The Case against the Petitioner


It was alleged that the petitioner is a relative of the deceased woman, who died by suicide. The case was registered against the petitioner on the ground that he, being a relative of the deceased, had a habit of assassinating the character of the deceased woman and due to such continuous harassment, the deceased committed suicide by setting herself ablaze.


The petitioner/accused was implicated in the instant criminal case mainly on the ground that he had harassed the deceased by assassinating her character frequently.


Court's Observations


Regarding the right to die, the Court observed,


"Right to die is not made available to the citizen of our great nation. However, some thinkers are of the opinion that the right to life includes the right to die also. This implied right is provided under Article 21 of the Constitution of India. Even under the Indian Penal Code, the person who had succeeded in committing such suicide, of course, cannot be punished, since the suicide is self-inflicted death."


The Court further continued,


"Persons who abet the deceased to commit suicide alone are prosecuted. This is a larger issue/larger line for arriving at a conclusion regarding the abatement to commit suicide. It would be very difficult for the prosecution, and based on certain circumstances, the Courts are also arriving at a conclusion that there is an abetment. However, it depends upon the facts and circumstances of each case."


The Court also opined that gossiping and assassination of the character are certain characters "developed by a few greedy men and women and on some occasions un-intentional character assassinations are also causing a certain impact on the individual person."


With regard to the instant case, the Court noted that it cannot arrive at a conclusion that only due to the character assassination; the act of suicide was committed.


However, the Court said that all these possibilities and probabilities ought to be investigated and the truth must be culled out during the course of the trial.


Lastly, taking note of the facts and circumstances of the case and also taking into consideration the period of incarceration, the Court granted bail to the petitioner subject to the condition that he be released on bail on his executing a bond for a sum of Rs.10,000/- (Rupees Ten Thousand only) with two sureties each for a like sum to the satisfaction of the learned Judicial Magistrate.


Importantly, the Court noted,


"In order to arrive at a conclusion whether the suicide can be made as an offence or right to life includes implied right to die also, it is for law makers to debate the issues by conducting a larger study with the assistance of experts and academicians in the field."

Read the Judgment


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