Punishment for attempting to commit offences punishable with imprisonment for life or other imprisonment is defined under Section 511 of Indian Penal Code 1860. Provisions under this section is:
Whoever attempts to commit an offence punishable by this Code with 1 [imprisonment for life] or imprisonment, or to cause such an offence to be committed, and in such attempt does any act towards the commission of the offence, shall, where no express provision is made by this Code for the punishment of such attempt, be punished with 2 [imprisonment of any description provided for the offence, for a term which may extend to one-half of the imprisonment for life or, as the case may be, one- half of the longest term of imprisonment provided for that offence], or with such fine as is provided for the offence, or with both.
(a) A makes an attempt to steal some jewels by breaking open a box, and finds after so opening the box, that there is no jewel in it. He has done an act towards the commission of theft, and therefore is guilty under this section.
(b) A makes an attempt to pick the pocket of Z by thrusting his hand into Z's pocket. A fails in the attempt in consequence of Z's having nothing in his pocket. A is guilty under this section.
1. Subs. by Act 26 of 1955, s. 117 and the Sch., for "transportation" (w.e.f. 1-1-1956).
2. Subs. by s. 117 and the Sch., ibid., for certain words (w.e.f. 1-1-1956).
In the analysis of criminal conduct, one may distinguish the following stages:
1. conceiving the idea of committing a legally prescribed harm
3. The menz rea or contemplation
5. Attempt stopped before the necessary conduct was completed and
6. Completion of that conduct, with or without attainment of the end sought.
The first two stages may be relevant to ethical evaluation, they are not legally significant. As regards mens rea while it is material, it is not punishable, for the devil himself knows not the thought of a man. It is always possible that a human being may change his evil intention, therefore only an evil intention accompanies with an overt act is made punishable in law. When such an evil intention is expressed in words and can be inferred from acts of a person he can be held criminally responsible.
After completion the next stage is of preparation. Preparation is punishable in certain exceptional cases only because those cases exclude the possibility of an innocent intention. After preparation the next stage is that of attempt. Attempt is direct movement towards the commission of an offence.
OFFENCES OF DEFAMATION
OFFENCES OF CRIMINAL INTIMIDATION, INSULT AND ANNOYANCE
Section 507, 508, 509 and 510 of Indian Penal Code 1860 - What is Criminal intimidation by an anonymous communication? What is Act caused by inducing person to believe that he will be rendered an object of the Divine displeasure? What is Word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman? What is Misconduct in public by a drunken person?
ATTEMPT TO COMMIT OFFENCES