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Thread: Indian Supreme Court rules in favor of right to self defense in gun case

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    http://www.deccanherald.com/content/...-can-kill.html



    Citizens can't be cowards, can kill in self defence: SC

    New Delhi, Jan 17 (PTI)




    A person cannot be expected to act in a cowardly manner when faced with an imminent threat to life and has got every right to kill the aggressor in self defence, the Supreme Court has held.




    Such a killing is permissible under the law and cannot be equated with murder, a Bench of Justices Dalveer Bhandari and Asok Kumar Ganguly said.

    "The law does not require a law-abiding citizen to behave like a coward when confronted with an imminent unlawful aggression. As repeatedly observed by this court there is nothing more degrading to the human spirit than to run away in face of danger.

    "The right of private defence is thus designed to serve a social purpose and deserves to be fostered within the prescribed limits," the Bench said a judgement.

    The apex court passed the judgement while acquitting a convict, Darshan Singh, of the murder of his uncle Gurcharan Singh on July 15, 1991 in Punjab's Ludhiana district over a land dispute.

    Darshan Singh shot dead Gurcharan Singh after the latter attacked the accused's father Bakthawar Singh with a lethal weapon on the head and then proceeded to attack him. In the scuffle that ensued Darshan Singh shot dead Gurcharan Singh.

    The sessions court had acquitted him on the ground that Darshan Singh had exercised his right of self defence provided under Sections 96-106 of the IPC.

    However, on an appeal from the state, the acquittal was reversed and the High Court sentenced the accused to life imprisonment following which he appealed in the apex court.Interpreting Section 96-106 of the IPC which justifies the killing of an assailant, the apex court said, the provision can be invoked where a person has a genuine apprehension that his adversary is going to attack him and reasonably believes that the attack will result in a grievous hurt.

    "In that event, he can go to the extent of causing the latter's death in the exercise of the right of private defence even though the latter may not have inflicted any blow or injury on him.
    "The question whether the apprehension was reasonable or not is a question of fact depending upon the facts and circumstances of each case and no straitjacket formula can be prescribed in this regard.

    "The weapon used, the manner and nature of assault and other surrounding circumstances should be taken into account while evaluating whether the apprehension was justified or not," the Bench held.

    According to the apex court, while enacting sections 96 to 106 of the Indian Penal Code, "the Legislature clearly intended to arouse and encourage the manly spirit of self defence amongst the citizens, when faced with grave danger".

    The apex court said the right to protect one's own person and property against the unlawful aggressions of others is a right inherent in man.

    "The duty of protecting the person and property of others is a duty which man owes to society of which he is a member and the preservation of which is both his interest and duty. It is, indeed, a duty which flows from human sympathy, the Bench observed.

    However, the Bench cautioned that such protection must not be extended beyond the necessities of the case, otherwise it will encourage a spirit or lawlessness and disorder. The right, therefore, has been restricted to offences against the human body and those relating to aggression on property, it said.

    "A mere reasonable apprehension is enough to put the right of self defence into operation, but it is also settled position of law that a right of self defence is only right to defend oneself and not to retaliate. It is not a right to take revenge.

    "The citizens, as a general rule, are neither expected to run away for safety when faced with grave and imminent danger to their person or property as a result of unlawful aggression," the Bench said, while directing Darshan Singh's acquitt

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    Wow!



    Go, India! :celebrate:celebrate

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    Regular Member Dreamer's Avatar
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    Even Gandhi believed in personal self-defense. In 1922, after he signed a pledge for non-violence in protest of the government (along with tens of thousands of other Indian protesters), he said:

    "Non-cooperators are under prohibition as to political violence. Those, therefore, with whom non-cooperation is not their final creed are certainly free to defend themselves or their dependents and wards against their assailants. But they may not defend themselves against the police acting in discharge of their duties, whether assumed or authorized."
    So he didn't believe in using violence (even in self-defense) for political reasons, but he DID believe in using force to defend one's self and one's family against violent attacks from individuals.
    It is our cause to dispel the foggy thinking which avoids hard decisions in the delusion that a world of conflict will somehow mysteriously resolve itself into a world of harmony, if we just don't rock the boat or irritate the forces of aggression—and this is hogwash."
    --Barry Goldwater, 1964

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    My Opinion (no cites provided):

    Looks like the Indians have become significantly more wise than the British (who really no longer believe in the right to self defense - which will be the cause of their ultimate demise).

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    Regular Member FMCDH's Avatar
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    4armed Architect wrote:
    My Opinion (no cites provided):

    Looks like the Indians have become significantly more wise than the British (who really no longer believe in the right to self defense - which will be the cause of their ultimate demise).

    That's the bigdifference between being a citizen and being a subject. A citizens rights are inherent and are suppose to be taken away onlythrough due process.

    A subjects rights are granted by the "state" and are subject to application or revocation at any time that it would inconvenience the government.

    The British are most definitely subjectsof their government.


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    Regular Member sudden valley gunner's Avatar
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    Another quote from Ghandi:

    “Among the many misdeeds of the British rule in India, history will look upon the act of depriving a whole nation of arms, as the blackest.”
    I am not anti Cop I am just pro Citizen.

    U.S. v. Minker, 350 US 179, at page 187
    "Because of what appears to be a lawful command on the surface, many citizens, because
    of their respect for what only appears to be a law, are cunningly coerced into waiving their
    rights, due to ignorance." (Paraphrased)

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    Campaign Veteran marshaul's Avatar
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    India is really moving in a positive direction, in more ways than one. I'm incredibly pleased to read this.

    Here's my tip of the hat to the whole nation!

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    Regular Member sudden valley gunner's Avatar
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    I could be wrong I often am, but I read somewhere and than was talking to an Indian friend of mine (convenience store, not casino) where the Indian government was getting rid of all federal unions. Don't know if this has happened or not, but would be cool and a good reason why they are able to move forward better as a country.
    I am not anti Cop I am just pro Citizen.

    U.S. v. Minker, 350 US 179, at page 187
    "Because of what appears to be a lawful command on the surface, many citizens, because
    of their respect for what only appears to be a law, are cunningly coerced into waiving their
    rights, due to ignorance." (Paraphrased)

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    Isn't it pretty pathetic that the right of self-defense has to be "rediscovered" or at the very least, continuously explained to people?

    -- John D.
    (formerly of Colorado Springs, CO)

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    Regular Member Old Grump's Avatar
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    Mumbai terror attack by Pakistani terrorists 14 months ago that left 180 dead behind may have had something to do with their new attitude. Even their police were unarmed, under-armed and poorly trained for such an event.

    Their gun control laws date back to the colonial days when the British didn't want the natives to be armed. Subsequent governments kept the policy for their own safety. When you fear your subjects you do not want them to have the means to overthrow you.

    India is now one of the if not the fastest growing well educated countries in the world and I look to them to be the next super power, not China. A free country should have citizens who ought to be able to protect themzelves from the lawless. A great country should be able to trust its citizens, if they don't then they should worry about being overthrown.

    Roman Catholic, Life Member of American Legion, VFW, Wisconsin Libertarian party, Wi-FORCE, WGO, NRA, JPFO, GOA, SAF and CCRKBA

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    Mexico has oppressed its people for centuries, and accordingly, theMexicans (as well asthe rest of Central and South America)USED to have fairly regular revolutions. Latey, the people of Mexico seem to have lost their rebellious "won't take it anymore" nature as their modern goverments have been no better.

    Perhapspeople aretoo "civlized" nowadays to even think of overthrowing any government.

    -- John D.
    (formerly of Colorado Springs, CO)

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    Regular Member sudden valley gunner's Avatar
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    cloudcroft wrote:
    Mexico has oppressed its people for centuries, and accordingly, theMexicans (as well asthe rest of Central and South America)USED to have fairly regular revolutions. Latey, the people of Mexico seem to have lost their rebellious "won't take it anymore" nature as their modern goverments have been no better.

    Perhapspeople aretoo "civlized" nowadays to even think of overthrowing any government.

    -- John D.
    They don't take it anymore they just come here.
    I am not anti Cop I am just pro Citizen.

    U.S. v. Minker, 350 US 179, at page 187
    "Because of what appears to be a lawful command on the surface, many citizens, because
    of their respect for what only appears to be a law, are cunningly coerced into waiving their
    rights, due to ignorance." (Paraphrased)

  13. #13
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    True, and they're making America just like where they came from.

    Embrace diversity...and the future.

    -- John D.
    (formerly of Colorado Springs, CO)

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