Landmark Legal Analysis on Compounding Non-Compoundable Offences

Explore a landmark legal analysis that delves into the complexities of compounding non-compoundable offences. Discover how the court’s evaluation of compromise, societal interests, and sentencing in a challenging legal case has set a new standard in the legal realm. This case highlights the importance of justice and reconciliation in navigating intricate legal matters.


  • Appellants sought special leave to appeal against High Court’s dismissal of their conviction.
  • Appellants filed an application to implead the injured-victim for compounding offences.
  • Court issued notice on the quantum of sentence only.
  • Findings of all three preceding forums were concurrent and without fault.
  • Connected appeals against the High Court judgment of Madras upholding convictions of the appellants under relevant sections of IPC.
  • Prosecution case involved a verbal altercation during a volleyball match leading to convictions.
  • Rigorous imprisonment sentences imposed on appellants by trial court upheld by higher courts.
  • Appellants had already undergone more than four months of imprisonment.
  • High Court reduced the sentence for one offence and imposed a fine.
  • Sentence of imprisonment to be reduced to period already undergone if fine of Rs 1500 is paid by each appellant.
  • Challenge to the judgment by convict-appellants unsuccessful before both forums.
  • Murali allegedly struck the victim on his head with a hockey stick
  • Rajavelu tried to kill the victim by giving a neck blow with a Veechu Aruval
  • The victim was able to escape and the matter was reported by his friend, PW-1
  • The appellants have admitted their fault, taken responsibility for their actions, and sought forgiveness from the victim
  • The appellants, along with three others, cornered and assaulted the victim on 09.08.2005
  • The parties have entered into an amicable settlement on the advice of elders
  • The incident led to the registration of Crime No 531 of 2005 under various sections of the IPC
  • As a result of the assault, the victim’s left hand and parts of his right hand got severed

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  • Victim has acknowledged the apology and forgiven the appellants
  • Section 320 of CrPC does not include Section 324 and 307 IPC offenses as compoundable
  • Section 320(9) CrPC explicitly prohibits compounding of offenses except as permitted under the provision
  • Amicable settlement can be a relevant factor for reduction in the quantum of sentence
  • Application for compromise filed on behalf of injured prosecution witnesses and the appellants.
  • Statement in the application indicated an amicable settlement between the appellants and injured persons.
  • Parties wanted to live in peace after settling their dispute.
  • High Court referred the matter to the trial court for verification of the compromise.
  • High Court determined that since the offence under Section 326 of the Penal Code, 1860 was non-compoundable, permission to compound the offence could not be granted.

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  • Parties have mutually buried their hatchet, indicating a resolution of the dispute without coercion or inducement.
  • The incident occurred during a sports match altercation, with no prior enmity between the parties.
  • The victim was a college student at the time, while the appellants were young, around 20-22 years old.
  • The victim has voluntarily accepted the apology after a significant passage of time, reflecting a sense of maturity and reconciliation.
  • The incident took place over fifteen years ago, and the parties involved are now residing in the same village and are relatives.
  • Considering the maturity brought about by time and the fact that the appellants have no prior criminal record, a reevaluation of the sentences is deemed appropriate by the court.
  • In several cases, the Supreme Court has considered compromise between parties in serious non-compoundable offenses.
  • The court has consistently reduced the sentence of the convicts to the time already served in such cases.
  • The approach of reducing sentences based on compromise has been followed in various decisions as listed.
  • Even in non-compoundable offenses, the Court has considered compromise as a factor in reducing sentences.
  • While some offenses were ordered to be compounded, in others, the sentence was reduced to time already served based on compromise.
  • Murali has served more than half of his sentence, and Rajavelu has been in jail for more than one year and eight months
  • Considering the unique factors and compromise between the parties, the quantum of the sentence imposed on the appellants is reduced
  • It might not serve the interests of society to keep them incarcerated further
  • Both appellants have served a significant portion of their sentences
  • The appellants have no other criminal antecedents, no previous enmity, are married, have children, and are the sole breadwinners of their family
  • The appellants have significant social obligations to tend to
  • The appellants are in their mid-thirties and present little chance of committing the same crime

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  • Both appellants are set free and their bail bonds, if any, are discharged.
  • Sentence of both appellants is reduced to the time already served.
  • Pending applications are disposed of accordingly.


Case Number: Crl.A. No.-000024-000024 / 2021

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