Mir Iqbal Hussain, J.
1. An unfortunate incident has resulted in the death of one Neerakallappa at the hands of the accused under a rather tragic circumstance. A certain quarrel took place on 18-6-1960 at about 6 P. M. between the parents of the deceased on one side and the accused's brother namely, Kanchappa on the other. During the course of that quarrel, the deceased Neerakallappa beat Kanchappa with a stick causing him an injury. Kanchappa was admitted into the Government Hospital at Kudligi as an in-patient on 19-6-1960. With the innocent purpose of finding out how Kanchappa was on the next day viz., on 20-6-1960 at about 10 a. m., the accused, the deceased and his father and a few other residents of Chikkakereyaginahalli called on the injured Kanchappa in the ward room of the hospital at Kudligi. There, a quarrel took place between the accused and the deceased. Thereafter, the accused took an axe belonging to one of the visitors viz., one Maliyappa, which had been left outside the ward room and assaulted the deceased causing him a bleeding injury. As a result thereof, the deceased fell down unconscious and later on, on the same night he died.
2. That such an incident took place is amply proved by the evidence in the case. The learned Sessions Judge after taking into consideration all the evidence available on record came to the conclusion that there was no intention on the part of the accused to deal a death-blow on the deceased causing his death. He, therefore, held that the case came within the purview of second part of Section 304 Indian Penal Code and convicted the accused for that offence and sentenced him to undergo rigorous imprisonment for two years. The accused has neither appealed against this conviction nor is he represented before this Court. The revision petition, however, is filed by the State and the only ground taken by it is the gross inadequacy of the sentence awarded to the accused.
3. Certain factors have to be taken into consideration to find out whether this sentence awarded by the learned Sessions Judge is grossly inadequate or not. That there was no intention on the part of the accused to inflict any injury on the deceased, much less was there any idea in his mind to kill him is amply borne out by the records in the case. Hence I accept the learned Judge's finding that the accused is guilty not Under Section 302 Indian Penal Code but only Under Section 304, Part II, Indian Penal Code, The only point that requires determination is whether the sentence of two years awarded by the learned Sessions Judge is grossly inadequate or not. Certain circumstances impel me to come to the conclusion that the sentence awarded is not grossly inadequate. Firstly in the heat of the moment with out any kind of fore-thought catching hold of a weapon which was not taken by the accused him self but by somebody else and kept outside the ward room, the accused used the same, dealt one blow on the deceased with the back of the axe mot realising that fatal consequences would result.
4. Another factor to be considered is the age of the accused. According to file medical evidence, his age is about 23 years. Scrutinising the evidence of the Doctor examined as P.W. 7 in this case, I am of the view that the age of the accused could not be ascertained with any certainty. If it was below 21 years he could be sent .to the Madras Borstal School under the Madras Borstal Schools Act (Act V of 1926), which is an Act applicable to Bellary District within which jurisdiction the occurrence took place. It looks as though he has narrowly missed the same. Thus, taking into consideration these circumstances, viz., the sudden fight, the lack of intention on the part of the accused to cause the death of the deceased, the age of the accused, the dealing of a single blow, I consider that the sentence imposed by the learned Sessions Judge is not grossly inadequate.
5. Under Section 439 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, the High Court has undoubted power to enhance the sentence under its revisional powers. But as held by the Supreme Court in the case of Sarjug Rai v. State of Bihar : 1958CriLJ268 :
There is no doubt that the question of sentence is a matter of discretion which has to be exercised in a judicial way i. e., the sentence imposed by the Trial Court should not be lightly interfered with and should not be enhanced unless the Appellate Court comes to the conclusion on a consideration of the entire circumstances disclosed in the evidence that the sentence imposed is inadequate.
6. This revisional power of the High Court to enhance the sentence is guided by certain principles. Though it has the power to do so it is slow in exercising the same. The mere fact that the High Court as a Court of first instance would have inflicted a heavier sentence is not a good and sufficient ground to enhance the sentence passed after due consideration by the trial Court. Unless the sentence so passed is grossly inadequate so as to amount to a miscarriage of justice the High Court, in my view, should not interfere with the discretion exercised by the trial Court. I am fortified in my view by a Bench decision of the Allahabad High Court in Emperor v. Kesri Chand : AIR1945All207 where it is held as follows:
The High Court is very reluctant in Criminal Revisions to differ from the discretion exercised by Courts below unless the discretion can be said to have been perversely exercised. Where the punishment awarded is manifestly inadequate or there has been a grave miscarriage of justice, the High Court may, in very exceptional cases, substitute its own discretion for the discretion of the Courts below.
7. In this case, the learned Sessions Judge has given good reasons as to why he considers that a sentence of two years' rigorous imprisonment would meet the ends of justice. In my view, the sentence so awarded cannot 'be classified as grossly inadequate or a sentence that would offend the sense of justice. The learned Government Pleader who argued this case has fA.I.R.ly put both the aspects of the case before me, much more so because the accused in this case is unrepresented.
8. Taking into consideration all the facts and circumstances of the case, I find that the sentence given in this case is adequate and cannot be classified as grossly inadequate. Hence this Criminal Revision Petition fails and is dismissed.