Grave and Sudden provocation doctrine not universal ; Bombay HC

TITLE : Santosh Balaji Nagrale v State of Maharashtra

CITATION : Criminal Application no 1041//2023

CORAM : Hon’ble justice Urmila Joshi-Phalke

DATE:  9th December, 2023


The applicant was seeking bail under Section 439 of Cr.PC for the offence punishable under Section 302 of IPC.


 The applicant was arrested on 9th July 2022 and since then he was in jail. The accusations was based on the report based by the wife of the deceased. The accused is the deceased’s brother. The deceased and the applicant lived in a joint family set up and the deceased had an addiction problem with alcohol.

In a quarrel between the applicant’s wife and the deceased after he abused her and subsequently killed by inserting a knife in the deceased’s chest which was done multiple times. The FIR suggested that this was a case of grave and sudden provocation. The postmortem report revealed that the deceased was stabbed 16 times on the vital parts of his body.


The prosecutor claimed that this was not a case of grave and sudden provocation as the accused interfered between the quarrel. He also added that there was 17 injuries out of which 16 are from stab injuries, making it clear that it was not a sudden reaction. The counsel for applicant argued that this was a case of culpable homicide not amounting to murder under Section 299 of the IPC.

The court held that the doctrine of grave and sudden provocation does not have a universal application and it may depend upon case to case basis. The court further held that in the present case, the exception under Section 304, i.e grave and sudden provocation is not applicable as there were multiple stab wounds thereby creating an intention to kill.

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Written by- Sanjana Ravichandran

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