In general use, the word ‘abet’ means to aid, advance, assist, help and promote. As observed in the case of Sanju vs. State of Madhya Pradesh the honorable Supreme court described ‘abet’ as meaning to help, to assist or to give aid, to control, to procure, or to counsel, to encourage, or to set another one to commit.

Definition of Abetment:

The definition of ‘abet’ as laid down, makes it clear that abetment only occurs when there are at least two people involved, which further directs us towards the arrangement and operation of the act. 

Meaning of Abetment:

Usually, the word ‘abet’ suggests assistance and incorporates within its area, unlawful reason to commit the crime.

Abetment is constituted by instigating a person to commit an offense; or Engaging in a conspiracy to commit it; or Intentionally supporting a person to execute it.

Punishment for Abetment under the IPC

As provided in section 110 of the Indian Penal Code, even if the individual abetted commits the offense with an intention different than the intention possessed by the main offender of the crime, yet the abettor will be punished for the offense abetted. The charge of the individual abetted is not covered in this section.

Under section 111 of the IPC it is further given that when crime is abetted and a different activity is also done, the abettor is liable only for the act done in the same manner it was abated to the same extent as the abettor directed.

Section 112 of IPC further explains the guidelines articulated in the previous section. According to the abovementioned section, the abettor is held liable for the offense abetted and also the offense committed. A joint inspection of Sections 111, 112, and 133 makes it completely obvious that if an individual abets another in the commission of an offense. And if the chief goes extra from there on and accomplishes something more which has another result from that planned by the abettor. Then, makes the offense worse one, the abettor is liable for the outcomes of the acts done by his principal.

 Section 113 must be read with Section 111 of the Indian Penal Code. Section 111 contains the doing of the Actus reus which is not the same as the one abetted, though this section deal with the actus reus which done is equal to the culpable act abetted though its effect is not the same.

Perhaps section 114 only brought into activity when conditions adding up to abetment of a specific wrongdoing have first been proved. After that, the presence of the accused at the commission for that wrongdoing is revealed. Section 114 mentions the case, where there is the abetment of crime. But, where additionally there is a real commitment of the wrongdoing abetted. And the abettor has been present there, and the manner by which it manages such a case is this. Rather than the wrongdoing being still abetment with circumstances of aggravation, the wrongdoing turns into the very wrongdoing abetted.

The act which is abetted may be done, and will be punishable under Sections 109 and 110 of the Penal Code.

Some act extraordinary act which was abetted might take place in which case the abettor will be put on trial under the punishments of Sections 111,112 and 113.


Relevant Case Law

Recently the law of abetment has go through major changes. The changes are set out by the following landmark cases:

In Pramod Shriram Telgote vs. State of Maharashtra, it was held that “distinct Mens rea to commit the offense is a sine qua non for conviction under Section 306 IPC”. 

In Channu vs. State of Chhattisgarh, it was held that “Just because wife committed suicide in marital home, husband and in-laws can’t be charged for abetment to suicide.”

In Gurucharan Singh vs. State of Punjab, it was held that “in order to convict a person for abetment of suicide, there has to be a clear mens rea to commit an offense


Therefore, as opposite to common belief, not only the wrongdoer of the crime but also his assistant will be liable under IPC.

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