S.C. Mohapatra, J.
1. Inadequacy of sentence for the offences under Secs. 279 and 338 of the Indian Penal Code has given rise to this appeal presented by the Public Prosecutor. It is not controverted either in the trial Court or in this Court that the accused-respondent dashed the motor-cycle which he was driving with P. W. 3 from behind causing bleeding injuries on him. The plea in defence was that the accused-respondent was not an experienced driver as he was newly driving motor-cycle at the time of accident.
2. The learned trying Magistrate found that the accused-respondent was driving the vehicle rashly and negligently on the public way. He also found that on account of the rash and negligent driving, P. W. 3 sustained grievous hurt as a result of the accident. Finding the accused guilty under Secs. 279 and 338, I. P. C, the learned Magistrate convicted him and sentenced to pay a fine of Rs. 200|- on each count which is the subject-matter of this appeal.
3. The injury report has not been proved in this case and the Medical Officer has not been examined. On the evidence of P. W. 3 that he sustained fracture of his hand, it is difficult to come to the conclusion that he sustained grievous hurt as for a lay-men it is not possible to draw the inference that it was a fracture. The ingredients of grievous hurt as provided under Section 320, I. P. C, have not been proved. Accordingly, the accused cannot be convicted under Section 338, I. P. C. In exercise of the power under Section 377(3), Cr. P. C, I set aside the conviction and sentence inflicted on the accused-respondent under Section 338, I. P. C. This will not, however, absolve the respondent from the offence under Section 337, I. P. C, since on the admitted facts P. W. 3 sustained injuries as a result of the accident provided the act of the respondent is rash and negligent.
4. The evidence of the Motor Vehicle Inspector who visited the spot of accident shows that after the accident the motor-cycle moved to a distance of 17.5 metres. This is a strong factor to draw the inference that the driving of the motor-cycle was rash and negligent. There can be no escape from the conclusion that the accused-respondent is guilty of offence under Section 337, I. P, C. Once there is rash and negligent driving, the accused is also guilty of an offence under Section 337, I. P. C.
5. Road accidents have increased to such-extent that one feels unsafe to move on the public way. Young persons in mopeds, motor-cycles and similar other biwheelers forget all rules of traffic and vehicular regulations while driving such vehicles. It is for gotten that the public way is not a place for training or gaining experience. Unless such tendency is curbed when opportunity for the same is there, the society would not be safe. The objects of punishment are reformative and prohibitive amongst others. Once a person is found guilty of an offence relating to driving of motor-vehicles, severe sentence should be imposed which would be a warning to others having such tendencies to be careful in their activities.
6. Normally, I would have imposed a substantive sentence as the accused-respondent, who is an inexperienced in the driving of vehicles, has not only injured an innocent passer-by but also invited danger to himself and the pillion-rider. However, five years have passed in the meantime. The investigating agency in this case has not focussed its investigation to find out whether the accused-respondent possessed a valid licence or a learner's licence. The prosecution has not examined the medical practitioner who treated P. W. 3. Taking into account the various aspects, a sentence of imposition of fine of Rs. 400/- in respect of the offence under Section 337, I. P. C. on the respondent in this case would meet the ends of justice. No separate sentence need be passed in respect of the offence under Section 279, I. P. C. In default of payment of the fine imposed, the accused-respondent shall suffer simple imprisonment for one month.
7. In the result, the appeal is allowed in part.