CHAPTER VA, Section 120A-120B of INDIAN PENAL CODE (IPC) – CRIMINAL CONSPIRACY
120A. Definition of criminal conspiracy.
When two or more persons agree to do, or cause to be done,-
(1) an illegal act, or
(2) an act which is not illegal by illegal means, such an agreement is designated a criminal conspiracy:
Provided that no agreement except an agreement to commit an offence shall amount to a criminal conspiracy unless some act besides the agreement is done by one or more parties to such agreement in pursuance thereof.
It is immaterial whether the illegal act is the ultimate object of such agreement, or is merely incidental to that object.
(i) The prosecution is not required to prove that perpetrators agreed to do or cause to be done the illegal act;
Mohammad Usman Mohammad Hussain Maniyar v. State of Maharashtra, AIR 1981 SC 162: (1981) SC Cr 381: (1981) Cr LJ 597.
(ii) The evidence as to transmission of thoughts sharing the unlawful design may be sufficient;
Kehar Singh v. State (Delhi Admn.), (1989) Cr LJ 1: AIR 1988 SC 1883.
120B. Punishment of criminal conspiracy.
(1) Whoever is a party to a criminal conspiracy to commit an offence punishable with death, imprisonment for life or rigorous imprisonment for a term of two years or upwards, shall, where no express provision is made in this Code for the punishment of such a conspiracy, be punished in the same manner as if he had abetted such offence.
(2) Whoever is a party to a criminal conspiracy other than a criminal conspiracy to commit an offence punishable as aforesaid shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term not exceeding six months, or with fine or with both.
CLASSIFICATION OF OFFENCE
Para I: Punishment—Same as for abetment of the offence which is the object of the conspiracy—According as the offence which is the object of conspiracy is cognizable or non-cognizable—According as offence which is object of conspiracy is bailable or non-bailable—Triable by court by which abetment of the offence which is the object of conspiracy is triable—Non-compoundable.
Para II: Punishment—Imprisonment for six months or fine, or both—non- cognizable—Bailable—Triable by Magistrate of the first class—Non- compoundable.
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