Throwing On Another Person Any Liquid Or Substance Other Than ‘Acid’ Not An Offence U/S 326B IPC: Delhi High Court

Title: Rashmee Kansal v. The State and Others
Citation: W.P.(CRL) 712/2022



In a recent ruling, the Delhi High Court provided a crucial clarification regarding interpreting Section 326-B of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). The court emphasised that for an offence to be established under this section, it is essential that a person throws or attempts to throw ‘acid’ on another person. Importantly, the court specified that Section 326-B is exclusively tailored to address acid attacks and does not encompass incidents involving any other liquid or substance. This clarification offers a distinct understanding of the scope and application of Section 326-B, particularly in cases involving the throwing or attempted throwing of harmful substances on individuals.


The case involves a respondent accusing her sister-in-law, the petitioner, of throwing a hot liquid at her, which allegedly landed on her right shoulder, blouse, and saree. Justice Amit Bansal, presiding over the matter, highlighted that if the liquid were indeed ‘acid,’ there would likely be external injuries and traces of the acid on the respondent’s body.

The petitioner sought the quashing of the FIR, claiming shared residency on a common property with the respondent. The petitioner argued that the FIR was a tactic to harass her, citing an ongoing property dispute between them. Additionally, it was noted that two complaints had been previously filed against the respondent by other occupants of the property.

In response, the respondent contested the existence of a property dispute and criticised the police investigation. The court considered an FSL report indicating that samples of the liquid substance collected from the property were Hydrochloric acid. However, the court noted that there was no evidence to demonstrate that the substance was thrown directly at the respondent’s body.

Court analysis and judgement:

In this case, the court provided a thorough analysis leading to the decision to quash the FIR. The central point of consideration was Section 326-B of the IPC, which specifies that an offense is established only if a person throws or attempts to throw ‘acid’ on another person and not any other liquid or substance. This legal criterion set the framework for evaluating the allegations.

The court took into account crucial medical evidence, including the discharge summary that indicated no external injury on the respondent at the time of hospital admission. Additionally, the PCR Form recorded the doctor’s statement asserting the absence of acid signs, categorizing it as a case of an old illness. These medical findings played a pivotal role in the court’s determination. Regarding the charge of criminal intimidation, the court observed a lack of substantive allegations in the FIR to substantiate the offense, providing a comprehensive legal analysis.

The legal representation included Mr. Sunil K. Mittal, Mr. Anshul Mittal, Mr. Harshit Vashisht, and Mr. Sarthak Sharma, Advocates for the petitioner, and Mr. Yasir Rauf Ansari, ASC (Crl.) with Mr. Alok Sharma and Mr. Rohan Kumar, Advocates for the respondents. The court, based on its analysis, quashed the FIR, highlighting that the substance thrown was not confirmed to be ‘acid’ and suggested that the allegation stemmed from an ongoing property dispute between the parties. This judgment analysis underscores the court’s meticulous consideration of legal criteria, medical evidence, and the context surrounding the allegations.

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Written By: Gauri Joshi

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