Decided on June 25,1970

In Re: Navier Marolle Appellant
STATE Respondents


R.SADASIVAM, J. - (1.) APPELLANT Navier Marolle has been convicted by the First Additional Sessions Judge, Pondicherry, under Section 302 of the Indian Penal Code for having murdered his brother's daughters, Beatrice aged five years, and Pierrette. aged five months, by smashing them on the floor, at about 10 -30 a.m., on 31st October, 1968, and sentenced to imprisonment for life. The fact that the appellant did cause the death of the two children admits of no doubt and, in fact, it was not disputed by the learned Advocate for the appellant. It is, however, necessary to refer to the evidence about the actual occurrence in this case in order to consider the plea of insanity which has been rejected by the trial Court.
(2.) THERE is ample evidence in this case to prove that the appellant was insane not only at the time of the occurrence, but also before and after it. He was aged only thirty -five years at the time of the trial. He was employed in the army, but the discharge certificate filed in this case shows that he was discharged from military service on 14th March, 1966 as he was suffering from schizophrenia, that he was totally indifferent to the whole of his surroundings and that he was bizarre in his behaviour. Even after the occurrence in this case he was under the observation of P.W. 13 Dr. Corunalio, who has given the opinion that the appellant has been suffering from schizophrenia or split type of personality. It is true that on account of some treatment his rapport was partially established, but even then he did not realise the gravity of the crimes committed by him.
(3.) THE crucial point of time for ascertaining the state of mind of the appellant is the time when the offence was committed. But, as pointed out by Subba Rao, J., (as he then was) in Dahyabhai v. State of Gujarat : 1964 CriLJ 472, the question whether the accused was in such a state of mind as to be entitled to the benefit of Section 84 of the Indian Penal Code can only be determined from the circumstances which preceded, attended and followed the crime. There is ample evidence in this case to show that the appellant was insane at the time of the crime. The several witnesses examined in this case have given evidence about the peculiar behaviour of the appellant. It is true that peculiar behaviour by itself may not be sufficient to support the plea that a person is insane or that he has a valid legal defence based on insanity. But it is a relevant circumstance to support the plea of insanity. Thus, there is evidence in this case to show that the appellant would not speak with any person, that he used to move about by himself, that he used to talk loudly, that he used to bring rabbits and fowls, bathe them with soap, dry them and kill them by smashing them on the grounds. It appears that whenever he got such brain disorder he used to get angry. It appears from the evidence of P.W. 6 Alve's Antoine that even the appellant's mother had brain disorder, and this shows that the appellant inherited the mental disease. Even P.W. 10 Miles stated that when he apprehended the appellant he was a bit mad. Even the evidence of the eye -witnesses in this case proves that the appellant was not mentally sound at the time of the occurrence in this case.;

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