Law of Crimes

Robbery-An aggravated form of Theft/Extortion

Previous Year Question(s):

Q. Unless the ingredients of either ‘theft’ or ‘extortion’ are present, neither the offence of ‘robbery’ nor the offence of ‘dacoity’ can be made out. Explain.

Q. In all robbery, there is either theft or extortion. Explain. 

Important Provision:

Section 390 of the IPC – Robbery

Section 391 of the IPC – Dacoity

Important Observations:

  • Robbery is an aggravated form of either theft or extortion.
  • Both in theft and extortion, dishonesty is an essential ingredient. So, if there is no element of dishonesty in an act, there can be no offence of theft or extortion and consequently there cannot be an offence of robbery.
  • Theft becomes robbery, if, in order to facilitate the committing of theft or in carrying away or attempting to carry away the stolen property, the offender (i.e., the thief) voluntarily causes or attempts to cause death, hurt or wrongful restraint or fear of instant death, instant hurt or instant wrongful restraint.

Important Case Laws:

  • Budho Saleh v Emperor – In order to verify whether a particular act would amount to a robbery or not, one has to first establish that the offence has essential ingredients of theft or extortion, since robbery is nothing but an aggravated form of theft and extortion. 
  • Bishwanath Jha v State of Bihar – Theft or extortion or attempt to commit any one of the two is an inevitable ingredient for robbery.
  • Shew Murar v State of Uttar Pradesh – Theft becomes robbery, if, in order to facilitate the committing of theft or in carrying away or attempting to carry away the stolen property, the offender (i.e., the thief) voluntarily causes or attempts to cause death, hurt or wrongful restraint or fear of instant death, instant hurt or instant wrongful restraint.

Categories: Law of Crimes

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