42 MEDICAL JURISPRUDENCE
her husband by administering arsenic.36 A 16-year-old boy was found guilty
of the double charge of murdering with a hammer and robbing his 15-year-
old classmate, Om Prakash, by the Additional Sessions Judge at Delhi. As
regards punishment, the Judge referred the case to the Chief Commissioner,
Delhi, under the Bombay Children Act, which was extended to the State
of Delhi.37 The Nagpur High Court sentenced a boy, aged 13i years,_ to
transportation for life for having killed a man by shooting him with a rifle,
but ordered him to be detained in a reformatory school for a period of fpur
years.38 On the other hand, cases are recorded where the tender age of the
accused is not taken into consideration for awarding the lesser penalty of
transportation for life, especially in cases of a ruthless and brutal murder.
The Amritsar Sessions Judge sentenced to death one Didar Sing, 16 years
old, for cutting off the head of his relative with a sickle.39
9. Infanticide. — In a charge of infanticide, where a newly-born infant
alleged to have been killed shows the signs of immaturity, it is necessary
to determine whether the infant had attained the age of viability, which
is certain after the 210th day of intra-uterine life and may, in exceptional
cases, be after the 180th day. An infant born earlier than this period is not,
in ordinary circumstances, capable of maintaining a separate existence after
birth. Hence the charge of infanticide may fall through, if the infant is
proved to be under the age of six months of intra-uterine life.
10. Criminal Abortion. — In criminal abortion it is necessary to find out
whether a woman has passed the child-bearing period, lest it might be a
false charge. It is also necessary to find out the age of the fcetus from the
characteristics of its development.
4. COMPLEXION AND FEATURES
The complexion may be fair, wheat coloured, dark, brown or sallow.
The colour may change from residence in a tropical country. The features
of an individual may resemble those of his supposed parents or relatives,
or his photograph, but this is not always the case. The features may change
considerably from, disease or dissipation or even from worries of a long
duration. Again, there are some persons who can cleverly alter their
features by changing the expression of their face, so as to evade detection.
Peterson, Haines and Webster 40 quote a case of Tidy in which Charles Peace,
a burglar, who was executed for the murder of William Dyson in 1879, had
such a remarkable power of changing his features and altering his expression
that he was accustomed to face the detectives who not only knew him well
but were actually seeking to arrest him at the time he was talking to them,
and was, moreover, able to deceive his wife and son as to his identity.
Photographs of the front and profile views of the face may serve as a
means of identification, and are specially useful in cases of disputed paternity.
While examining photographs the chief point to note is the character of the
angle which the eye forms with a line drawn through the middle of the
forehead or nose ; but the medical man should never risk an opinion ori
this point, as he should remember that he is not an expert in photography
whereas a photographer or an artist is better qualified to give an opinion on
such a point.
36. Jasha Bewa (1907), 11 C.W. No. 904; 6 Grim. Law Jour., p. 154; Katanlal and
Thakore, The Law of Crimes, Ed. XVII, p. 745.
37. Times of India, Oct. 13, 1953, p. 3.
38. Daljit Singh v. K. E., 39 Cr. Law Jour., 1938, p. 92.
39. Times of India, Dec. 11, 1934 ; Madras High Court Cr. Appeal No. 254 of 1942 •
K E. v. Chevveti and another, 44 Cr. Law Jour., 1943, p, 299. In his case the accused
who were between 16 and 17 years of age were sentenced to death under section 302,
40. Legal Medicine and Toxicology, Vol. I, Ed. IE, p. 165.