This article on ‘Man sentenced to death for killing Parents: Facts and Laws‘ was written by Tuba Sanobar, an intern at Legal Upanishad.
Man sentenced to death for killing Parents:
A 47-year-old man was found guilty of killing his parents at their home in 2018 and was given the death penalty by a court in Chhattisgarh’s Durg District, describing the incident as one of the “rarest of the rare.”
In a 310-page judgment, Additional Sessions Judge Shailesh Kumar Tiwari decided the death penalty for the man and expressed that only the death penalty will be the appropriate punishment for the convict so that no one ever dares again to commit such a grave offence of murdering his parents.
Let us now discuss the facts of the case and the relevant laws regarding it.
Facts of the Case
Sandip Jain killed his mother Surji Devi (67) and father Rawalmal Jain (72), both of whom were well-known businesspeople and social workers in Durg, on January 1. Sandip was the only person present in the house at the time of the incident besides the two deceased, so police detained him based on circumstantial evidence.
The father-son duo’s disagreements over a number of topics, including property, were proven in court. According to reports, one of the problems was that the accused did not like it when his father asked him to fetch water from the nearby Sheonath river to perform rituals at a temple in their home.
The police reported that Sandip killed his parents out of fear that they would reject him. Sandip was found guilty of murder under section 302 of the Indian Penal Code by the court after hearing the arguments and examining the evidence. The Indian Penal Code’s Section 302 addresses the penalty for murder. Murder is punishable by death or life in prison.
The other two defendants, Bhagat Singh Gurudatta and Shailendra Sagar, who had given Sandip a gun, received five years in solitary confinement as well as a fine of Rs 1,000 each.
What does the law say about the maintenance of parents?
In addition to being a moral obligation, maintaining parents is a legal obligation as set forth in the Criminal Procedure Code of 1973 and the Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act of 2007. These clauses are unavoidable and can be applied when children neglect to care for their parents.
Along with the wife and children, parents are entitled to maintenance under Section 125 of the 1973 Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC). The maintenance rights of the mother and father are expressly provided for in CrPC Section 125(1)(d).
According to Section 125 of the Criminal Procedure Code, a wife, children, and parents may ask their husband, father, and children for support, as appropriate. According to Section 125, the maintenance provision, if a son or daughter refuses maintenance of parents and they lack any means of income to support themselves, the appropriate courts may order maintenance and welfare of parents. For each instance of failure to pay maintenance to parents, the Magistrate may issue a warrant for that person’s arrest and/or place them in jail for up to one month or until payment is made, whichever comes first.
The Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act of 2007 is another piece of legislation. It specifically addresses all issues pertaining to the upkeep and welfare of parents through financial assistance as well as the creation of old age homes for elderly people without children or parents who have been neglected.
Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act 2007
A provision in Section 23 of the 2007 Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act allows for the nullification of specific property transfers. It primarily shields senior citizens from financial fraud committed by those with fiduciary responsibilities. For instance, a senior citizen might give away his or her property to someone else with the only requirement that the beneficiary meets his or her basic physical needs. The transfer will be deemed to have occurred fraudulently, coercively, or under undue influence in such a situation, and at the senior citizen’s discretion, it may be declared void.
Senior citizens (those over 60) and parents of any age are covered by the Act for the Maintenance and Welfare of Parents. Maintenance orders can be obtained against children or any relative who is the senior citizen’s legal heir.
The Act also mentions the State Government for establishing a Maintenance Tribunal. Parents can hire family lawyers to help them understand the situation, but they do not necessarily need one while the matter is before the Maintenance Tribunal. The maintenance application process must be completed within 90 days of serving notice on the children/relatives. An extension of 30 days may be given in case of exceptional circumstances.
Can parents demand maintenance from sons?
Yes, the law allows parents to seek maintenance from their sons and daughters if they are unable to support themselves. In the case of Dr. (Mrs.) Vijaya Manohar Arbat v. Kashi Rao Rajaram Savai and others, the court ruled that “a father or mother, unable to maintain himself or herself, can claim maintenance from his or her son or daughter.” The phrase “his father or mother” refers to both the father and mother of a child, not just the father or mother of a son.
Both sons and daughters have a moral and legal obligation to look out for and support their parents. If this obligation is not met, parents may knock on the doors of maintenance tribunals to demand payment from their children for their monthly expenses. If the children’s parents don’t pay their maintenance as required by the Act, they risk being imprisoned for three months or longer. Money is not everything, though, as some people find it difficult to maintain their independence as they age and require help with daily tasks.
Section 19 of the Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens, Act 2007 calls for the establishment of old age homes by the State Government that can house elderly people in need.
The CrPC and the Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007, impose legal obligations on children to care for their elderly parents, which includes providing for their needs. One may end up committing the heinous crime of murdering his own parents due to some unnecessary misunderstanding and disbelief among his own parents. It is morally repugnant and violates the law at the same time.
India is a morally upstanding, religious, and spiritual country. It is believed that respecting your parents is a reward-earning activity that aids kids in achieving paradise in the hereafter. Children aspire to receive the blessings of their parents, and this is reflected in Indian law in the form of a duty to the parents.
- Chhattisgarh man gets life imprisonment for killing parents, girlfriend, burying bodies, India Today, 31 January 2023, available at: https://www.indiatoday.in/india/story/chhattisgarh-man-gets-life-imprisonment-for-killing-parents-girlfriend-bodies-burial-2328555-2023-01-31
- Man sentenced to death for killing parents in Chhattisgarh; court terms it ‘rarest of rare crime, 24 January 2023, Press Trust of India, available at: https://www.ptinews.com/news/national/man-sentenced-to-death-for-killing-parents-in-chhattisgarh-court-terms-it-rarest-of-rare-crime/500022.html
- The Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens (Amendment) Bill, 2019, PRS India, available at: https://prsindia.org/billtrack/the-maintenance-and-welfare-of-parents-and-senior-citizens-amendment-bill-2019