0

From a plain meaning perspective would it be considered covered?

Section 349 Indian Penal Code (IPC) states the following

A person is said to use force to another if he causes motion, change of motion, or cessation of motion to that other, or if he causes to any substance such motion, or change of motion, or cessation of motion as brings that substance into contact with any part of that other’s body, or with anything which that other is wearing or carrying, or with anything so situated that such contact affects that other’s sense of feeling;

Provided that the person causing the motion, or change of motion, or cessation of motion, causes that motion, change of motion, or cessation of motion in one of the three ways hereinafter described:

By his own bodily power.

By disposing any substance in such a manner that the motion or change or cessation of motion takes place without any further act on his part, or on the part of any other person.

By inducing any animal to move, to change its motion, or to cease to move.

Would bodily skin to skin contact not be covered under this? For example poking someone (i.e you are in a class and some other student sitting behind you pushes his finger into your skin even though it doesn't cause hurt but does cause annoyance).

1 Answer 1

1

Possibly, but it would be fact specific e.g. if the person being poked turns around or otherwise reacts with movement because:

A person is said to use force to another if he causes motion ...to that other [person]

Ultimately it would be for a court to decide, but are you aware of section 95 IPC?

Act causing slight harm.

Nothing is an offence by reason that it causes, or that it is intended to cause, or that it is known to be likely to cause, any harm, if that harm is so slight that no person of ordinary sense and temper would complain of such harm.

This is related to the principle of de minimis non curat lex

4
  • is the de minimis doctrine exhaustive ? for example I've always wondered if de minimis is a defense usable in crimes related to abetment where someone instigates or aids someone to commit a crime even if the crime is pretty bad. is the harm seen as a whole or to a specific act ?
    – user49663
    Commented Apr 28, 2023 at 9:29
  • @IndianLawDropout That's a separate question that can't be answered in comments, sorry.
    – user35069
    Commented Apr 28, 2023 at 10:08
  • oh of course my notifications are bugged so I'm unable to at times. I did it right now
    – user49663
    Commented Apr 28, 2023 at 10:42
  • It's worth noting that the section states "that no person with ordinary sense and temper would complain of such harm". Would the example in the OP be under this category ?
    – user49663
    Commented Apr 29, 2023 at 4:01

You must log in to answer this question.