Kidnapping for ransom under Section 364A Indian penal code

It is relevant to point out that Section 364A had been introduced in the Indian penal code by virtue of Amendment Act 42 of 1993. The statement of objects and reasons are as follows:

Statement of Objects and Reasons.’Kidnappings by terrorists for ransom, for creating panic amongst the people and for securing release of arrested associates and cadres have assumed serious dimensions. The existing provisions of law have proved to be inadequate as deterrence. The Law Commission in its 42nd Report has also recommended a specific provision to deal with this menace. It (was) necessary to amend the Indian penal code to provide for deterrent punishment to persons committing such acts and to make consequential amendments to the code of Criminal Procedure, 1973.

It is clear from the above the concern of Parliament in dealing with cases relating to kidnapping for ransom, a crime which called for a deterrent punishment, irrespective of the fact that kidnapping had not resulted in death of the victim.

In Malleshi v. State of Karnataka, (2004) 8 SCC 95, while considering the ingredients of Section 364A Indian penal code, this Court held as under:

To attract the provisions of Section 364A what is required to be proved is: (1) that the accused kidnapped or abducted the person; (2) kept him under detention after such kidnapping and abduction; and (3) that the kidnapping or abduction was for ransom’.

To pay a ransom, as stated in the above referred Section, in the ordinary sense means to pay the price or demand for ransom. This would show that the demand has to be communicated.

In Vinod v. State of Haryana, AIR 2008 SC 1142, while reiterating the principles enunciated in Malleshi (supra), this Court accepted the case of the prosecution and confirmed the conviction and sentence of life imprisonment imposed under Section 364A Indian penal code.