(a) A takes property belonging to Z out of Z's
possession, in good faith, believing, at any time when he takes it, that
the property belongs to himself. A is not guilty of theft; but if A,
after discovering his mistake, dishonestly appropriates the property to
his own use, he is guilty of an offence under this section.
A, being on friendly terms with Z, goes into Z's library in Z's absence,
and takes away a book without Z's express consent. Here, if A was under
the impression that he had Z's implied consent to take the book for the
purpose of reading it, A has not committed theft. But, if A afterwards
sells the book for his own benefit, he is guilty of an offence under
(c) A and B, being joint owners of a horse, A takes the horse out of
B's possession, intending, to use it. Here, as A has a right to use the
horse, he does not dishonestly misappropriate it. But, if A sells the
horse and appropriates the whole proceeds to his own use, he is guilty
of an offence under this section.
Explanation 1- A dishonest
misappropriation for a time only is a misappropriation with the meaning
of this section.
A finds a Government promissory
note belonging to Z, bearing a blank endorsement. A, knowing that the
note belongs to Z, pledges it with a banker as a security for a loan,
intending. at a future time to restore it to Z. A has committed an
offence under this section.
Explanation 2- A person who finds property not in the possession of
any other person, and takes such property for the purpose of protecting
if for, or of restoring it to, the owner does not take or misappropriate
it dishonestly, and is not guilty of an offence; but he is guilty of the
offence above defined, if he appropriates it to his own use, when he
knows or has the means of discovering the owner, or before he has used
reasonable means to discover and give notice to the owner and has kept
the property a reasonable time to enable the owner to claim it.
What are reasonable means or what is a reasonable time in such a case,
is a question of fact.
It is not necessary that the finder should
know who is the owner of the property, or that any particular person is
the owner of it; it is sufficient if, at the time of appropriately it,
lie does not believe it to be his own property, or in good faith believe
that the real owner cannot be found.
(a) A finds a rupee on the high road, not knowing to
whom the rupee belongs. A picks up the rupee. Here A has not committed
the offence defined in this section.
(b) A finds a letter on the
road, containing a bank note. From the direction and contents of the
letter he learns to whom the note belongs. He appropriates the note. He
is guilty of an offence under this section.
(c) A finds a cheque
payable to bearer. He can form no conjecture as to the person who has
lost the cheque. But the name of the person, who has drawn the cheque,
appears. A knows that this person can direct him to the person in whose
favour the cheque was drawn. A appropriates the cheque without
attempting to discover the owner. He is guilty of an offence under this
(d) A sees Z drop his purse with money in it. A picks up
the purse with tile intention of restoring it to Z, but afterwards
appropriates it to his own use. A has committed an offence under this
(e) A finds a purse with money, not knowing to whom it
belongs; lie afterwards discovers that it belongs to 4 and appropriates
it to his own use. A is guilty of an offence under this section.
(f) A finds a valuable ring, not knowing to whom it belongs. A sells it
immediately without attempting to discover. the owner. A is guilty of an
offence under this section.
CRIMINAL MISAPPROPRIATION OF PROPERTY
Section 403 of Indian Penal Code 1860 - What is dishonest
misappropriation of property? What is the punishment for dishonest
misappropriation of property?
Section 404 of Indian Penal Code 1860 - What is dishonest
misappropriation of property possessed by diseased person at the time of
death? What is the punishment for this crime?