Homicide means causing death of one human being by another human being. Homicide may either Lawful or unlawful. Every Homicide is not unlawful. In case of lawful homicide, a person causing death is either justified or excused from liability. Lawful homicide may be classified into -(1) Excusable Homicide and (2) Justifiable Homicide
       In respect of right of private defence extending to causing of death under Section 100, 103, 106 are justified homicides. while death caused by accident, wherein there is no criminal intention or knowledge, there is excuse from criminal liability.

A homicide is considered in law to be justified, if death is caused by -

1) A person who is bound , or by a mistake of fact, in goof faith believes himself to be bound by law - 

              Section 76 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 says that nothing is an offence which is done by a person who is, or who by reason of a mistake of fact and not by reason of a mistake of law in good faith believes himself to be, bound by law to do it.

Examples :

     (a) A, a soldier, fires on a mob by the order of his superior officer, in conformity with the commands of the law. A has committed no offence.

     (b) A, an officer of a Court of Justice, being ordered by that Court to arrest Y, and after due inquiry, believing Z to be Y, arrests Z. A has committed no offence.

2) A person  who acts pursuant to a lawful to a lawful authority or by reason of a mistake of fact, in good faith he believes himself so authorised -


            According to Section 79 of the Indian Penal Code, Nothing is an offence which is done by any person who is justified by law, or who by reason of a mistake of fact and not by reason of a mistake of law in good faith, believes himself to be justified by law, in doing it.

Example : 


             A sees Z commit what appears to A to be a murder. A, in the exercise, to the best of his judgment exerted in good faith, of the power which the law gives to all persons of apprehending murderers in the fact, seizes Z, in order to bring Z before the proper authorities. A has committed no offence, though it may turn out that Z was acting in self-defence.

3) A judge when acting judicially in the exercise of any power which he possesses, or in good faith he believes that he possesses under the law - 

           Section 77 of the Indian Penal Code says that, nothing is an offence which is done by a Judge when acting judicially in the exercise of any power which is, or which in good faith he believes to be, given to him by law.


4) A person acting in pursuance of the judgement or order a Court of Justice -

              Section 78 of the Code says that, nothing which is done in pursuance of, or which is warranted by the judgment or order of, a Court of Justice, if done whilst such judgment or order remains in force, is an offence, notwithstanding the Court may have had no jurisdiction to pass such judgment or order, provided the person doing the act in good faith believes that the Court had such jurisdiction.

5) A person acting with no criminal intention to cause harm and in good faith to avert or other harm to person or property -


              According to Section 81 of the Indian Penal Code, nothing is an offence which is done by accident or misfortune, and without any criminal intention or knowledge in the doing of a lawful act in a lawful manner by lawful means and with proper care and caution.

Examples : 

          A is at work with a hatchet; the head flies off and kills a man who is standing by. Here, if there was no want of proper caution on the part of A, his act is excusable and not an offence.


6) A person exercising his right of private defense(Section 96 to 106 of I.P.C)  -

            Section 76 of the Indian Penal Code, Nothing is an offence which is done in the exercise of the right of private defence.
   

                  
      See also 

               Culpable Homicide

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