Sentencing Modification in Kidnapping Case: Legal Analysis

In a recent legal case, the Court analyzed the sentencing of accused individuals convicted for kidnapping offences. The Court considered various factors, including the accused’s family responsibilities, in modifying the sentence. The legal analysis provides insights into the Court’s rationale for the decision, highlighting the importance of balancing justice with individual circumstances. Let’s delve into the details of the case and the Court’s legal analysis.


  • The complainant/PW-1 expressed that the victim was not of marriageable age and requested to consider the accused’s proposal after the victim reaches marriageable age.
  • The complaint was lodged with the police suspecting the role of accused No.1.
  • 16 witnesses were examined by the prosecution to prove the alleged offences by the accused.
  • Accused Nos. 4 and 5 were found guilty of offences under Sections 344 and 366 read with Section 34 of the IPC.
  • The complaint was filed by the victim’s daughter who did not return home for about half an hour after going to a nearby shop.
  • Various witnesses including the victim girl (PW-2), medical officers (PW-3 and PW-4), the owner of the house where the victim stayed (PW-5), and others were examined during the trial.
  • Accused No.1 was also found guilty of an offence under Section 6 of the POCSO Act.
  • The investigation revealed that accused No.1 conspired with other accused to kidnap the minor girl with the help of accused Nos. 4 and 5.
  • The High Court of Karnataka, Dharwad Bench, heard the appeal primarily on the quantum of sentence.
  • The accused were charge-sheeted for various offences including those under the IPC and the POCSO Act.
  • The Sessions Court convicted accused No.1 for offences under Sections 344, 366 of the IPC, and Section 6 of the POCSO Act.
  • The investigation was initiated after the registration of the crime following the complaint by the victim’s mother (PW-1).
  • The conviction and sentence imposed on the accused were confirmed by the High Court through a judgment dated 06.06.2019.
  • The appellants were convicted for offences under Sections 344 and 366 of the IPC.
  • The appellants were sentenced to undergo Simple Imprisonment for one year for the offence under Section 344 and a fine of Rs. 2000, as well as Simple Imprisonment for two years for the offence under Section 366 and a fine of Rs. 5000.
  • The appeal was filed against the High Court’s judgment and order dated 06.06.2019, confirming the conviction/sentence of the appellants for the said offences.

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  • Learned counsel for the appellants requests to modify the sentence as it is considered excessive and illegal.
  • Appellants/accused Nos. 4 and 5 are tenants of accused Nos. 6 and 7, falsely implicated at the instance of PW-1 and PW-2.
  • Allegation against appellants/accused Nos. 4 and 5 is helping accused No.1 in transporting the victim from the petrol pump to Vishwanathhalli.
  • State argues various inconsistencies and contradictions in the prosecution evidence, yet the Trial Court erroneously convicted the appellants.
  • The Trial Court’s sentencing of appellants/accused Nos. 4 and 5 is deemed excessive for the offenses they are charged with.
  • Appellants have minor child and aged parents with no one to take care of them, a factor to consider in modifying the sentence.
  • Learned counsel argues High Court’s error in confirming both conviction and sentence despite lack of proof beyond reasonable doubt by the prosecution.
  • Learned counsel for the appellants questioned the conviction but the Court is satisfied with the reasoning of the High Court.
  • The High Court confirmed the conviction under Sections 344, 366 read with Section 34 of IPC based on the kidnapping of PW-2 minor girl at the instance of accused No.1.
  • The Court finds no illegality in the conviction and sentence imposed on the appellants.
  • Both counsels were heard, and the impugned judgment along with the record was considered for the decision.

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  • Main accusation against accused no.1 convicted for offences under Sections 344, 366 IPC and Section 6 of POCSO Act.
  • Imposed sentence of 10 years while considering relevant factors and circumstances of the case.
  • Appellants argue that PW-1 was not a direct witness and PW-2 was tutored by PW-1.
  • Complaint indicated accused no.1 was in love with victim girl PW-2.
  • Court’s notice limited to the quantum of sentence only.
  • Request made by appellants to modify the sentence considering human approach in sentencing.
  • The appellants have already served a sentence of about three months and paid a fine amount in relation to the alleged incident of 2014.
  • The appellants pleaded that they have a minor son and elderly parents who require their care, and there is no one else to look after them.
  • Considering the circumstances of the appellants, including their family responsibilities, leniency may be warranted in this case.

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  • The appellants are to be released forthwith unless their custody is required for another case
  • The appeal is partly allowed with modifications to the extent indicated above
  • In consideration of the unique facts and circumstances of the case, the conviction and fine are confirmed but the sentence for the appellants is modified for the period already served


Case Number: Crl.A. No.-000336-000336 / 2021

Click here to read/download original judgement

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