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Report No. 156

Clause 180

12.78. Under this clause the new sections 434 to 440 which also deal with graver or serious type of mischief are sought to be substituted in the place of the existing sections. We have already mentioned that the changes suggested by the Law Commission with reference to sections 438 to 440 were only regarding sentence. But in the Bill in these proposed sections the mischief caused to the public institutions, public services and to aircraft etc. with a view to impair the efficiency or impede the working thereof of any of these public institutions rendering service is made punishable severely.

The proposed section 434 again deals with mischief to any aircraft or to any docked vessel or to any vessel of a burden of 20 tones upwards with a view to render it unsafe etc. Section 435 covers the offence of mischief by fire or any explosive substance intending to cause or knowing it to be likely that thereby would be causing damage to any property to the amount of Rs. 100 or upwards. Section 436 again covers the offence of mischief by fire or any explosive etc. which results in destruction of any building or any object which is held sacred.

The language of this section is somewhat analogous to existing section 436. Section 437 is a new one and the offence mentioned therein is "sabotage". This section is very exhaustive. A careful reading of this section which contains several types of acts of mischief would reveal that the intention of the Legislature is to combat the destructive acts of violence with an intent to impair the efficiency of the public institutions and the services which in the present type of organised crime sometimes of international ramifications. Sub-section (2) has been rightly added in this section. Sub-sections (3) and (4) also have been properly added in this very section.

Though preparation by itself in general is not an offence but having regard to the magnitude and the propensities the preparation for committing sabotage also is made punishable under section 438, but the sentence of three years may be enhanced to five years. However, the word "aircraft" occurring in section 434 may be omitted in view of our suggestions made in Chapter X. In respect of other types of mischief regarding the aircraft section 3A of the SUACA is to be amended. If not, the section as proposed may be retained and the sentence be brought in accordance with section 3A of SUACA.



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