Offenses related to Miscarriage

The Offense Relating to Miscarriage, Injuries to Unborn Children and Concealments of Births in India

Sections 312 to 318 of Chapter 16 of the Indian Criminal Code of 1860 explain the provisions concerning “crimes leading to miscarriage, infant contact with unborn babies and concealment of childbirth”. These regulations are designed to prevent illegal abortions, injuries to unborn babies, etc.

According to article 312 of the Indian Penal Code of 1860, the law stipulates the punishment for abortion with the consent of the victim.

Sec 312: Abortion with the consent of the victim:

Section 312 of the Indian Penal Code states: “For voluntary purposes, in order to save a woman’s life, if a woman who has children has a miscarriage for voluntary reasons, she shall be imprisoned with one of the two descriptions to avoid miscarriage. It can be extended for three years, or impose a fine, or both. If the woman gives birth to a child, she should be sentenced to any kind of imprisonment, up to seven years’ imprisonment, or a fine.

This section refers to women who cause miscarriages. ”

Following are the components of Article 312

1) Voluntary abortion of women with children;

2) This kind of abortion should not save the life of the pregnant woman in good faith.

Article 39 of the IPC defines “voluntary” as the intent to cause an effect or the use of means that people know or have reason to believe may have the desired effect. Therefore, the intention to cause miscarriage or insanity is an important part of the crime.

“Women with children” means a pregnant woman. The woman is pregnant, the moment the pregnancy or pregnancy begins, the woman is said to be with the child.

The term “take your child quickly” refers to the third trimester of pregnancy. “Speeding up” is a feeling of the mother that the fetus has moved or the embryo has formed a fetus.

The term derives from the ancient concept that when the mother feels the movement, the fetus has life and ensures an identity other than the mother. However, abortion caused by “women with children” is considered a more serious crime than abortion by “women with children”.

Abortion technically refers to spontaneous abortion, and voluntary abortion, which constitutes a crime under the Code, represents criminal abortion.

Article 312 criminalizes voluntary abortion in two situations: (i) When a woman is sentenced with her child, the sentence for any of the described sentences may be sentenced to three years or imprisonment, or both; (ii) If the relationship between women and children is agile, and any of the described penalties are sentenced to fixed-term imprisonment, the sentence can be extended to seven years and may be fined.

The interpretation of Section 312 clearly shows that the offender may be the woman herself or anyone else. In Re Ademma [(1886) ILR 9 Mad. [369] A woman was sued for causing a miscarriage. Although she was only a month pregnant, there was nothing to be called a fetus or child.

The lower court is not guilty of this woman and is tolerant of this matter. However, the High Court ruled that the acquittal is legally unethical and emphasized that the mother’s absolute responsibility is to protect her baby from pregnancy.

A person, who assists and assists in abortion, even if it violates the provisions of Article 109 of the Code, shall be responsible for the crime of promoting abortion in accordance with the provisions of Article 312. According to Article 312 read in Article 511 of the IPC, those who assist and promote abortion are responsible for attempting abortion.

Article 312 allows abortion for medical (medical) reasons to protect the mother’s life. This provision must not criminalize the actions of doctors and nurses who promote or accelerate childbirth, because otherwise childbirth will be delayed; especially when the child is born alive and does not cause harm to the mother or child.

Article 312 stipulates that, for the purpose of saving women’s lives, those who have abortions in good faith may be exempted. In this case, according to Article 312, this person is not liable.

Abortion without women’s consent (IPC Article 313)

Sec-313: abortion without the consent of the woman:

Article 313 of the Indian Penal Code stipulates: “The crime defined in the previous section is committed without the woman’s consent, and the woman shall be sentenced to life imprisonment or imprisonment regardless of whether the woman has a child. The validity period of the description may be extended to ten years, And may be fined.”

Article 313 of the Code is a continuation of Article 312. In the crime described in Article 312, the consent of the pregnant woman is inherent. In the crimes specified in Article 313, without the consent of the pregnant woman, only the person who caused the abortion will be punished, and the woman will not be punished, and in the Article 312, the woman who caused her abortion will also be punished. .

The offence specified in Article 313 is an aggravating form of the crime and is considered to be a more serious crime. According to Article 313, a life sentence shall be imposed  Or one of the prison terms described can be extended to ten years and may be fined.

The crimes stipulated in Article 313 are recognizable, non-bailable and not aggravated, and shall be tried by the court of the conference.

Sec-314 death due to deliberate abortion:

This section punishes acts that cause death on the grounds of intentional abortion. It said that anyone who intends to cause a miscarriage of a woman with a child, and any act that causes the woman’s death, shall be punished with a simple or severe sentence of up to ten years’ imprisonment and shall be liable to a fine; if the act is carried out without the woman’s consent Be sentenced to life imprisonment, or impose a simple or severe sentence of less than ten years, and be fined.

The explanation attached to this section states that knowledge of the offender’s knowledge that the act is likely to cause death is not essential to this crime. The prosecution must prove that the criminal intended to abort a woman with children. It must also be proven that he did anything that led to the woman’s death.

Although the punishment specified in the first part of this section is severe, it is lighter than the punishment specified in the next part, which was caused by someone’s intentional miscarriage and childbirth without their consent. This explanation illustrates this very powerfully, and correctly speaking, whether the behavior is carried out without knowing whether it may cause death is not important at all.

Since this section does not mention any crimes related to the cause of death, this clause covers all deaths, whether voluntary, involuntary, rash, or carelessness. Therefore, if the defendant administered a toxic drug with the intention of causing a miscarriage of a woman with a child, and there was no proof that the defendant knew that the drug might cause death, they were considered guilty. This part.

The Supreme Court ruled that the defendant was accused of teaching someone to induce a miscarriage of a woman with children under Article 314 of the Criminal Code, and did not inform him of the trial for teaching the woman at any stage of the trial It is inappropriate to convict the accused of teaching the woman to cause her miscarriage, because the accused may be biased in her defense.

In another case, the accused nurse tried to cause a woman to have a miscarriage, but failed. On the third day, another person who was alone with the deceased received two hours of treatment, which eventually led to a miscarriage. As the condition deteriorated, the deceased was taken to hospital for about five days. She died of sepsis for several days. Her sepsis was caused by a rupture and tear in the vagina.

There is no evidence that the rupture and tears were caused by the defendant. According to Article 314, the accused’s conviction was revoked. However, in Maideen Sab v. State, the death of a woman was caused by an abortion. The female son of the deceased left her at the accused doctor’s home. Her body was found in that house.

The three witnesses had the defendant’s extra-legal confession in front of them. The defendant who fled after the incident surrendered in the court. Since the body was buried and decomposed, there was no medical evidence. The situation chain has been properly established. The court confirmed that the defendant was convicted under article 314 of the Criminal Law.

In the case of Jacob George v. Kerala, the deceased who wanted an abortion was taken to the defendant’s hospital as a homeopath. She died a few hours after the operation. The evidence of the deceased cousin who accompanied her to the hospital played a vital role in supporting the prosecution case. The autopsy report confirmed his claims about the date and time of death. The report showed that the untrained defendant used a scientific tool to pierce her uterus.

The defense argued that the deceased’s cousin had attempted to cause abortion by brutal means and believed that she had been taken to the defendant’s hospital and was undergoing emergency treatment. The situation was very serious at the time and the defendant did not report the matter to the police. Abortion is not allowed for any reason. The Supreme Court convicted the accused under Article 314 of the Criminal Law and increased the fine from Rupee. 5,000 /- to rupee. One hundred thousand to raise children left by the dead.

In Surendra Chauhan v. State, a person who allegedly had an illegal relationship with the deceased took her to a doctor’s clinic with the intention of causing a miscarriage. The woman died during abortion. The doctor has no right to terminate the pregnancy, and his clinic has not been approved by the government under section 4 of the 1971 Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act, and has no basic facilities for abortion. The Madhya Pradesh High Court considers that there is a common intent between the defendant and the doctor for the crime mentioned in Article 314, so conviction under Article 314/34 is appropriate.

The crimes provided for in Article 314 are identifiable, non-bailable and non-missable, and can be tried by the court of the conference.

Section 315 to prevent the child from being born alive or causing the child to die:

Article 315 stipulates that any person who acts to prevent the child from being born alive or causes his death before the birth of any child, and by that act prevents the child from being born alive or causes his death after death, if it is to save the mother The purpose of life, not the act of good faith, shall be punishable by imprisonment of up to ten years or imprisonment, a fine, or both.

Important matters:


When the child is in the womb, the city and well-educated people know about amniocentesis and other methods to determine the sex of the child. Villages and uneducated people are not aware of such tests.

Therefore, those who hate girls can cause girls to die during childbirth or after birth. In some cases, in order to seize someone’s property and remove the legal male heir, some distorted, mean people will kill the child at or after birth. Article 315 imposes fines on such persons.


The only exception in this section is that if there is any danger to the mother’s life and it is necessary to kill the child in accordance with the opinion of a medical expert, the section accepts jurisdiction for the crimes referred to in this section.



Ten years or fines, or both.


The crime is punishable, non-bailable, non-combinable, and can be tried by the conference court.

Article 316 of the Indian Penal Code of 1860

The legal provision of section- 316 of the IPC of 1860.

316 actions leading to the death of a fast-growing fetus constitute homicide:

This article punishes acts that cause death of a fast-growing fetus with a punishable act of homicide. It stated that anyone taking any action in such a situation resulting in death due to such an act constitutes punishable homicide, and the death of a fast-growing fetus by this act should be punished with simple or severe imprisonment and the sentence can be extended to ten Years, and imposed a fine.

The act must be carried out in a situation where if the perpetrator causes death due to the act, the perpetrator will be found guilty of homicide, and because of the act, he must cause the death of the fast-growing fetus. This section can be read in conjunction with the third interpretation in Article 299. According to this interpretation, the cause of the child’s death in the mother’s womb is not murder. However, even if any part of the child is taken away, even if the child may not breathe or be completely born, it may constitute a crime of homicide.

The Allahabad High Court ruled that unless the perpetrator had deliberate or knowledge, and, under the authority of section 299, to take action against the mother of a fast-born baby, this section would not simply be attracted. Because this caused the death of a fast-growing fetus. If the defendant’s husband beats his wife who has been pregnant for 20 weeks and both his wife and children are killed, the defendant is convicted under this section in addition to being convicted under Article 302 of the Criminal Law.

The crimes provided for in Article 316 are identifiable, non-bailable and non-miscellaneous, and can be tried by the court of the conference.


Section 317 Abandonment and Contact of the Baby:

Article 317 of the Indian Criminal Code stipulates that “Children under the age of twelve years shall be exposed and abandoned by their parents or persons under care:-Who are the parents of the children under the age of twelve or the children of the caregivers shall be exposed or kept In any place, the child shall be renounced altogether and shall be punished by any kind of imprisonment, imprisonment for less than seven years, or a fine or both.


If the child dies due to exposure, as the case may be, this section is not intended to prevent the trial of murder or guilty homicide. ”

Article 317 requires three main points:

1) The person within the authority must be a father or mother or must be taken care of by the child.

2) The child must be at least 12 years old.

3) The child must be completely exposed or placed anywhere.

IPC Section 317 only applies to situations where children are exposed or abandoned (including legal and illegitimate children under 12 years of age). This section aims to protect the interests of children under the age of 12 because they have no right to protect themselves. Parents and adults have the primary responsibility. Parents and adults may have custody of the child to raise the child and provide adequate care for the weaker children.

Usually, the father is the natural guardian of the child, and the mother is second only to the father. However, as far as section 317 is concerned, the provision stipulates that both parents have the same obligation to care for the child. This section makes no distinction between children born out of wedlock or children born out of wedlock.

n addition to parents, Article 317 also stipulates that persons cared for by children shall have the same responsibility. Therefore, the clause covers day care centers, nurseries, orphanages, schools, etc.

The main point of Section 317 is to give up or leave intentionally. The term “exposure and leave” means putting the child in danger, neglecting the child, and not providing adequate protection for the child from natural factors (such as colds, heat, and other hazards). “Exposure” refers to going out of the body, so such going out poses a physical risk to the released person.

This section further stipulates that “the entry and exit of children” should be accompanied by “intention to give up”. The word “leave” must be understood as having exposure. It means not only giving up, but also giving up somewhere, the purpose is to let it destiny.

The expression “or take care of such a child” does not apply to worship servants such as nurses or Aya. It refers to the person who accepts or raises a child, whether through adoption or contracting with a parent or other means.

If the exposure and abandonment of a child under the age of 12 results in the death of the child, the father, mother or person under their care will be responsible for the murder or guilty murder in the following items: Interpretation of Section 317.

However, this child’s death should be caused by exposure. Unlawful contact with children should directly lead to death, and should be carried out with the knowledge that it may cause death, and then follow the instructions in this section.

Section 317 applies to situations where children are exposed and there is no replacement for death; however, if a subsequent death occurs, a conviction must be made under section 304. Even if it does not cause actual danger or dangerous danger to a child’s life, it may constitute a crime.

Hari Singh Gour provided the following example: A woman abandoned her 10 days of illegitimate children when a child could and did get food. However, the child died of natural causes four days later. It is believed that the mother was not guilty of murder.

The nature of the offence specified in Article 317 can be identified by the first-rank magistrate, released on bail, irretrievable and justifiable.

Article 318 covers birth by secretly disposing of the body:

Article 318 stipulates that anyone who deliberately conceals or seeks to conceal the child’s birth by secretly burying or otherwise disposing of the child’s body (whether the child died before or after his birth or during his death) shall be sentenced to imprisonment as follows Penalties: The term of office may be up to two years, or a fine, or both.

Important matters:

  1. Object:

This section also aims to prevent infanticide. If the child’s birth is concealed and his body is disposed of in secret, the law will assume that the person did so deliberately and killed the baby.

  1. The provisions of this section apply to persons who secretly bury or otherwise dispose of a child’s body. It does not matter that such a child dies before, after or during birth.
  2. If the child concerned has fully developed and is still alive or dead, then only this section applies. If f is only in the fetal period, Article 318 does not apply, but Articles 312 and 511 shall apply.
  3. Penalties:

One description, or a fine or both, can be sentenced to a maximum of two years in prison.

  1. Nature of crime:

The sheriff of the first section can be identified, released on bail, and cannot be reconsidered, and can be tried on the land.

Author: Anubhuti Agrawal,
Jagran Lakecity University,Bhopal

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