What is Compundable offence ? What are the legal implications?
A V Vishal (Advocate) 06 May 2010
Some offences largely affect only the victim and no considerable harm is considered to be done to the society. In such offences, if the offender and victim compromise, there is no need to waste court's time in conducting a trial. The process of reaching a compromise is called Compounding. Conceptually, such offences, in which a compromise can be done and a trial can be avoided, are called Compoundable offence. Technically, offences classified as Compoundable by Section 320 of Cr P C are compoundable. Section 320 specifies two kinds of Compoundable offences - one where permission of court is required before compounding can be done for example, voluntarily causing grievous hurt, Theft, criminal breach of trust, assault on a woman with intention to outrage her modesty, etc. and one where permission of the court is not required for example, causing hurt, adultery, defamation, etc. As per S. 320(3), if the abetment of an offence is an offence and if the offence is compoundable then abetment is also compoundable.
Only the person, in the classification tables in Section 320, has the right to compound the offence. The person is usually the victim. The offender cannot demand compounding as a right.
However, when an offender has been committed to trial or when he has been convicted and his appeal is pending, compounding can only be done with the leave of the court to which he is committed or to which the trial is pending. If an offender is liable for enhanced punishment or a different punishment on account of a previous conviction, compounding cannot be done. High Court and Court of Session may, under their power of revision in Section 401, can allow any person to compound any compoundable offence.
When an offence is compounded, it is equivalent to an acquittal.
G. ARAVINTHAN (Legal Consultant / Solicitor) 06 May 2010
Compoundable is similar to compromise in civil litigations
G. ARAVINTHAN (Legal Consultant / Solicitor) 08 May 2010
But compoundable offences are less serious in nature
P.K.Haridasan (Advocate) 08 May 2010
Thanks for your worthy notes.
Adv k . mahesh (advocate) 07 February 2015