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Negligent conduct with respect to animals (Section 288 of IPC)

Any person who keeps such wild animals like a tiger or bear, which escapes and does danger, is liable without any proof of notice of the animal’s ferocity; in such a case it may be said ‘res ipsa loquitur1 in the case of wild and savage animals, a savage or mischievous temper, is presumed to be known to their own and to all men as a usual accompaniment of such animals; and hence a positive duty is cast on the owner to protect the public against the mischief resulting from such animals being at large.

Where a pony which was tied negligently got loose and ran through a crowded bazar, it was held that the conviction under Section 289 was good, because the pony on such an occasion might create danger to the lives or limbs of men, women and children, walking in the bazar.

For convicting under Section 289, it must be established in the affirmative that the accused knowingly or negligently omitted to take such order with the animal as was sufficient to guard against probable danger to human life or probable danger or grievous hurt from such animal.

The offence under Section 289 is cognizable but summons should ordinarily issue in the first instance. It is bailable but not compoundable, and is triable by any Magistrate summarily.