Do You Know That You Can Be Punished For Unlawful Gathering | क्या आप जानते हैं कि आपको गैरकानूनी सभा के लिए दंडित किया जा सकता है

Meeting of minds, pre-mediation, prior conspiracy to conduct a criminal is of prime value in prosecution & defense in a criminal trial. There are distinctive overlaps in common intention and common object.

In this topic

  1. Common Intention
  2. Common Object



Basic Concept  

  1. Meeting of minds, pre-mediation, prior conspiracy to conduct a criminal is of prime value in prosecution & defence in criminal trial.
  2. There are distinctive overlaps in common intention and common object
  3. There is also a distinctive line between the common intention and common object, implying a distinctive applicability of IPC sections on both of these.

Article  I.          

Common Intention  

  1.  For existence of common intention, apart from there should be two or more accused ,  the following factors must be established:
    1. Common Intention : The intent of group of people ( 2 or more ) are criminal
    2. Participation of accused: Even if the criminal act is done by any one person (not all people in the group), the criminal act would be considered as being done by each person of the group.
  2. Although common intention is assumed to have a pre-arranged plan (prior meeting of minds), it can also be developed at a spur of moment.


IPC Section 



Legal Definition  

  •  Every person accused in crime committed as furtherance of Common Intention, is equally liable like his co-accused, for punishment. State of Punjab vs. Fauja Singh (1997) 3 Crimes 170 (P&H). 98261227523
  • The burden lies on prosecution to prove that actual participation of more than one person for commission of criminal act was done in furtherance of common intention at a prior concert. Mrinal Das vs. State of Tripura AIR 2011 SC 3753.
  • Mere surrender by appellant along with accused before police, doesn’t not show meeting of minds as to bring the case between ambit of IPC section 34 applicable to proving Common Intention . Rangaswami vs State of Tamilnadu (1989) CR LJ 875 AIR 1989 (SC) 1137.




A group of person comprising ‘A’, ‘B’, and ‘C’ agrees to commit a crime, by conducting a bank robbery.  The ‘A’ assists the other two accused ‘Band ‘C’ to help in fleeing the spot by providing a vehicular support. ‘B’ provides support to ‘C’, but didn’t actually participate in the conduct of robbery. ‘C’ robs the bank.


Here A & B intentionally cooperates in commission of crime with C, and each one these people had a common intention of the crime to done by robbing the bank.

Even though the act was done by C, all three accused A, B, and C, are proved to have a common intention, thereby implying IPC section 34. The prosecution can seek punishment as if the act of robbery was done by each of the accused individually.  

Article  II.       

Common Object  

  1. Common object doesn’t require proof of prior meeting of minds or pre-concert.
  2. To determine the existence of common object, the court is required to see the circumstances in which the incidence has taken place, including the incident that has taken place, conduct of members of unlawful assembly including the weapon of offence used on spot. Roy Fernandes vs State of Goa
  3. Common object may also form on spur of the moment.


There must be nexus between the common object and offence committed and if it is found that the same was committed to accomplish the common object every member of the assembly will become liable for the same

IPC Section 

IPC Section 149 –   Every member of unlawful assembly guilty of offence committed in prosecution of common object

Legal Definition  

  • If a crime or offence is committed by any member of an unlawful assembly, every member present at the time of incident of common object of that assembly is guilty of offence of common object, u/s IPC 149
  • To determine the existence of common object, the court is required to see the circumstances under which the incident has occurred.
  • Common object may also form in the spur of moment
  • It must be within the knowledge of other members of the group when incriminating act was done to accomplish the common object, in order to attract Section 149
  • Every member of the common object will be punished according to the nature of offence conducted under common object – bailable, non-bailable, trialable by court – non compoundable.




 A has participated in a group of protesters while assembly of persons were declared unlawful u/s 144.

By participating in the unlawful assembly, the group of people including A had a common object of protesting, which was an unlawful act, for which every member of the assembly is trialable for the offence under common object IPC section 149

Meanwhile, A on sudden provocation or in impulse,  assaulted a police personnel in the periphery, in full view of the protestor group.

In this situation, although the assembly being unlawful and was charged u/s 149 of common object, but the assault  on police was an isolated act done by A only. The common object of assault couldn’t be proved as no member of the assembly had agreed prior to create an assaultive act.

For the assault action, only A is punishable.

Article  III.   

Distinction between ‘Common Intention ’ & ‘Common Object’


  1. A clear distinction between common intention and common object is that common intention denotes action in concern and necessarily postulates the existence of a pre-arranged plan implying a prior meeting of minds.
  2. While the common object doesn’t require the proof of prior meeting of mind or pre-concert

Difference between operation of Section 34 & Section 149

 Both sections deal with combination of persons who become liable to be punished as sharers in commission of offence.

In order to convict a person vicariously liable under section 34 or section 149 it is not necessary to prove that each and everyone had indulged in overt acts.  


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