Common Intention v/s Common Object – IPC

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      Section 34 and Section 149 deals with the common intention and common object under IPC impose vicarious liability on each individual for acts that are not necessarily done by them. However, there are some differences in the scope and nature of the operation of both offenses.
      Section 34 lays down the principle of joint liability, which means the act done by several persons, and the act which are intentional and preplanned. There should be a common intention between the persons committing the act, participation of the person act should lead to an offense under the Indian penal code.
      ‘Common intent’ in Section 34 has not been clearly defined in the IPC, whereas’ common object’ must be one of the five ingredients defined in Section 141 of the IPC.
      ‘Participation’ is the main factor in Section 34, but active involvement is not required in section 149 of the IPC. Section 34 requires the common intention of any kind.
      If the intention is proved but if there is no action done then this case deals with section 34 vicarious liabilities, but if the person has done the act but he/she has no intention then section 34 cannot be invoked

      Under Section 149, If an offense is committed by any member of an unlawful assembly in prosecution of the common object of that assembly, or such as the members of that assembly knew to be likely to be committed in prosecution of that object, every person who, at the time of the committing of that offense, is a member of the assembly, is guilty of that offense.
      The offense under section 149 is an assembly of five or more members having one objective and there must be an unlawful assembly and acts are taken under for any member of the assembly.
      Members of the unlawful assembly should join voluntarily with knowledge of the common object.
      The charge is replaced by Section 34 of the IPC, particularly when some of the accused are acquitted and the number of the accused drops below 5.
      Section 34 does not constitute a particular offense but sets out only the principle of joint criminal culpability. Whereas Section 149 generates a particular offense and being a member of an unlawful assembly is itself a criminal offense punishable under Section 143.

      Section 34 requires some active involvement, particularly in the case of a crime involving physical abuse. Section 149 does not involve active involvement and also the responsibility comes from the mere membership of the unlawful assembly with a common objective.

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