1) Introduction - 


     Assault is an overt act or making a gesture or a preparation intending, or knowing it to be likely that such gestures or preparations are with reference to the use of criminal force against the person. To Constitute an assault there must be some threatening physical act by which the offender intentionally causes another to apprehend that criminal force is about to be used against him.



2) Meaning and Definition of Assault - 



       Assault is defined in Section 351 of Indian Penal Code, 1860. as consisting of an overt act, or making any gesture or a preparation intending, or knowing it to be likely that such gesture or preparations are with the reference to the use of the criminal force against the person.


3) Assault (Section 351 of Indian Penal Code) -



       According to Section 351 of Indian Penal Code, Whoever makes any gesture, or any preparation intending or knowing it to be likely that such gesture or preparation will cause any person present to apprehend that he who makes that gesture or preparation is about to use criminal force to that person, is said to commit an assault.

Explanation - 

      Mere words do not amount to an assault. But the words which a person uses may give to his gestures or preparation such a meaning as may make those gestures or preparations amount to an assault.

Illustrations 

(a) A shakes his fist at Z, intending or knowing it to be likely that he may thereby cause Z to believe that A is about to strike Z. A has committed an assault.

(b) A begins to unloose the muzzle of a ferocious dog, intending or knowing it to be likely that he may thereby cause Z to believe that he is about to cause the dog to attack Z. A has committed an assault upon Z.

(c) A takes up a stick, saying to Z, "I will give you a beating". Here, though the words used by A could in no case amount to an assault, and though the mere gesture, unaccompanied by any other circumstances, might not amount to an assault, the gesture explained by the words may amount to an assault.


Ingredients

The Prosecution must establish the following two ingredients to prosecute a person for assault -

1) Making any gesture or preparation by a person in the presence of another; and

2) Intention or Knowledge of Likelihood that such gesture or preparation will cause the person to apprehend that the person making it is about to use criminal force to him. 



Related...Distinction between Assault and Battery

4) Punishment for assault or criminal force otherwise than on grave provocation Section 352 -



According to Section 352 of I.P.C whoever assaults or uses criminal force to any person otherwise than on grave and sudden provocation given by that person shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to three months, or with fine which may extend to five hundred rupees, or with both.

Explanation -

     Grave and sudden provocation will not mitigate the punishment for an offence under this section, if the provocation is sought or voluntarily provoked by the offender as an excuse for the offence, or if the provocation is given by anything done in obedience to the law, or by a public servant, in the lawful exercise of the powers of such public servant, or if the provocation is given by anything done in the lawful exercise of the right of private defence. Whether the provocation was grave and sudden enough to mitigate the offense, is a question of fact.


Ingredients - 

    To Invoke Section 352 of the Indian Penal Code Following Ingredients are to be Satisfied -

(1) The accused made a gesture or preparation to use Criminal Force;

(2)The Accused knew that it was likely that such gesture or preparation to use criminal force would cause apprehension that such assault or use of force would be done; and

(3) That no grave or sudden provocation was received from the complainant.


 The offense under Section 352 of the Indian Penal Code is non-cognizable, bailable, compoundable and triable by Magistrate.


Related... Difference / Distinction between Tort and Crime

5) Assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty 


            According to Section 353 of the Indian Penal Code,1860 whoever assaults or uses criminal force to any person being a public servant in the execution of his duty as such public servant, or with intent to prevent or deter that person from discharging his duty as such public servant, or in consequence of anything done or attempted to be done by such person to the lawful discharge of his duty as such public servant, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to two years, or with fine, or with both.


Ingredients -

To invoke Section 353 of the Code following Ingredients are to be satisfied -

(1) The person must be public Servent;

(2) The Public Servant was acting in the exercise of his duties;

(3) That the assault or Criminal force used against such public servant:

    (i) was intended to prevent or deter him from discharging his duty as a public servant, or

   (ii) was used as a consequence of anything done or attempted to be done by the said public servant in the lawful exercise of his duties such as public servant.

The offense under Section 353 is cognizable, bailable, non-compoundable and triable by any Magistrate.

6) Assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty (Section 354 ) -


           Whoever assaults or uses criminal force to any woman, intending to outrage or knowing it to be likely that he will thereby outrage her modesty, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which shall not be less than one year but which may extend to five years, and shall also be liable to fine.
Classification of Offence Assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty - Imprisonment of one year which may extend to five years and with fine

Ingredients 

(1) That the assault must be on Female

(2) The accused must have used criminal force oh her

(3) That the Criminal Force must have been used on the women intending thereby outrage her modesty.

      The offense under Section 354 is Cognizable, Non-bailable and triable Any Magistrate


7) Assault or use of criminal force to woman with intent to disrobe ( Section 354B) - 


      Any man who assaults or uses criminal force to any woman or abets such act with the intention of disrobing or compelling her to be naked, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which shall not be less than three years but which may extend to seven years, and shall also be liable to fine.

   Classification of Offence Assault or use of criminal force to woman with intent to disrobe - Imprisonment of not less than three years but which may extend to seven years and with fine.

   The offense under Section 354 is Cognizable, Non-bailable and triable by Any Magistrate

( Inserted by Section 7 of ‘The Criminal Law (Amendment) Act, 2013.


8) Assault or criminal force with intent to dishonor person, otherwise than on grave provocation (Section 355) -


       Whoever assaults or uses criminal force to any person, intending thereby to dishonor that person, otherwise than on grave and sudden provocation given by that person, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to two years, or with fine, or with both.


Ingredients -

(1) A person -

  (a) assaults, or

  (b) uses criminal force to another person

(2) He intends to thereby to dishonor that person.

(3) The act is done otherwise than on grave and sudden provocation.

The offense under this Section (355) is non-cognizable, bailable, compoundable and triable by any Magistrate.

9) Assault or criminal force in attempt to commit theft of property carried by a person (Section 356) -


      Whoever assaults or uses criminal force to any person, in attempting to commit theft on any property which that person is then wearing or carrying shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to two years, or with fine, or with both.


Ingredients -

(1) The accused assaulted or used criminal force to another person;

(2) The other person was wearing or carrying the property attempted to be stolen; and

(3) The accused committed assault in attempting assault to steal such property.

The offense under this Section (356) is cognizable, bailable, non-compoundable and triable by any Magistrate.

10) Assault or criminal force in attempt wrongfully to confine a person (Section 357) - 


       Assault or criminal force in attempt wrongfully to confine a person.-- Whoever assaults or uses criminal force to any person, in attempting wrongfully to confine that person, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to one year, or with fine which may extend to one thousand rupees, or with both.

      The offense under Section 357 is cognizable, bailable compoundable with permission of the court before which any prosecution of such offense is pending and triable by any Magistrate. 


11) Assault or criminal force on grave provocation (Section 358) - 


       Whoever assaults or uses criminal force to any person on grave and sudden provocation given by that person shall be punished with simple imprisonment for a term which may extend to one month, or with fine which may extend to two hundred rupees, or with both.


Ingredients - 

1) A person assaults or uses criminal force to another

2) The act is done on Sudden Provocation 

   The offense under Section 358 is non-cognizable, bailable Compoundable and triable by any Magistrate 


See also...


Distinction Between Assault and Affray

Protection of women's Human Rights under the criminal laws of India

Offenses Against State (Section 121 to 130 of the Indian Penal Code 1860)



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