Tips & Tricks to Learn Important Sections of IPC

17 Nov 2023  Read 8289 Views

The Indian Penal Code (IPC) is a comprehensive criminal code that serves as the primary legislation governing criminal offences in India. With 511 sections, it can be overwhelming to remember all of them, especially when preparing for competitive exams that test your knowledge of specific sections. 

To make things easier, let's focus on the most crucial sections that often appear in these exams. We'll list them and provide some tips and tricks to help you remember them. With these tricks and knowledge of essential provisions, you can understand the law without a headache. 

So, dive in and let's make these sections your pals!

Tips & Tricks to Learn IPC Sections

Here are the following tips and tricks, with the help of which you can quickly learn the essential sections under IPC.  

1. Memory Techniques

Utilise mnemonic devices, acronyms, or memory aids to remember key sections and their elements. Creating associations or stories related to each section can make the information more memorable. Also, focus on core or important sections under IPC. (discussed below)

For Example: 

  • Section 420 - Cheating and Dishonestly Inducing Delivery of Property

Memory Aid: "Four Twenty: Tricky and Shifty."

Explanation: Linking the number 420 with deceitful actions can help recall this section related to cheating.

  • Section 138 - Dishonor of Cheque

Memory Aid: "One Thirty-Eight: Cheque, mate, don't be late."

Explanation: Connecting the number 138 with the concept of dishonouring a cheque can make it easier to remember.

2. Frequent Revision

Regularly revisit and review the sections you've learned. Spaced repetition, where you revisit information at increasing intervals, can significantly improve retention.

3. Application through Examples

Practice applying the sections to real-life examples or hypothetical situations. This reinforces your understanding and helps in practical application, which is crucial for legal studies.

For Example:

Section 420 of IPC

Suppose Alex convinced his friend Sarah to invest in a photography business, promising great returns. Excited, Sarah invested a significant amount. However, Alex vanished, avoiding meetings and updates. Investigating, Sarah discovered that the business was a scam, and Alex had cheated her and others, dishonestly taking their money.

Key Elements:

  • Cheating: Alex's deceptive proposal and false promises.

  • Dishonestly Inducing Delivery of Property: Sarah's investment of money in the hope of returns.

Memory Aid:

Think of Alex and Sarah's photography venture whenever you come across Section 420, and you'll recall the story of cheating and dishonest inducement. (Visualise it in your mind)

4. Concept Mapping

Create concept maps or diagrams to visualise the relationships between different sections. This can help you see the overall structure and connections, making it easier to recall information during exams or discussions.

For Example:

You are reading Crime Against Persons, which includes Homicide, Assault, Kidnapping & Rape. So, you can do concept mapping in the following manner:

  • Visualise clicking on "Homicide" to expand and see "Culpable Homicide amounting to Murder" and "Culpable Homicide not amounting to Murder." (Sec. 299 & 300)

  • Visualise clicking on "Assault" to see "Simple Assault" and "Aggravated Assault." (Sec. 352 & 326)

  • Visualise clicking on "Kidnapping" to reveal the two types mentioned: "Kidnapping from India” and "Kidnapping from Lawful Guardianship." (Sec. 360 & 361)

  • Visualise clicking on "Rape" to expand and see the distinction between different aspects under Section 375.

5. Teach the Material

Teaching is a powerful way to solidify your understanding. Explain the sections to a study partner, friend, or yourself. Teaching forces you to organise your thoughts and articulate the information, reinforcing your grasp of the material.

Indian Penal Code Course: This course will help you understand the structure of the Indian Penal Code. It covers all the important cases that come under IPC sections. It is available in both video and theory content.

Important Sections of IPC

The essential sections of IPC are:

Chapter I- Introduction

Section 1 – Title and extent of operation of the Code

Section 2 – Punishment of offences committed within India

Section 3 – Punishment of offences committed beyond but which by law may be tried within India

Section 4 – Extension of Code to extra-territorial offences

Chapter II- General Explanations

Section 8 – Gender

Section 11 – Person

Section 19 to 26 – “Judge", “Court of Justice", “Public Servant”, "Movable property", “Wrongful gain”, “Wrongful loss”, “Gaining wrongfully, losing wrongfully”, “Dishonestly”, “Fraudulently”, “Reason to believe”

Section 34 – Acts done by several persons in furtherance of common intention

Section 35 – When such an act is criminal by reason of its being done with a criminal knowledge or intention

Section 36 – Effect caused partly by act and partly by omission

Section 37 – Co-operation by doing one of several acts constituting an offence

Section 38 – Persons concerned in criminal act may be guilty of different offences

Section 39 – “Voluntarily”

Section 40 – “Offence”

Section 52 – “Good faith”

Section 52A – “Harbour”

Chapter III- Of Punishments

Section 53 – Punishment

Section 73 – Solitary confinement

Section 74 – Limit of solitary confinement

Chapter IV- General Exceptions

Section 76 to 106 General Exceptions (All sections are important)

Chapter V- Abetment

Section 107 to 120– Abetment (All sections are important)

Chapter VA- Criminal Conspiracy

Section 120A – Definition of criminal conspiracy

Section 120B – Punishment of criminal conspiracy

Chapter VI- Of offences against the state

Section 121 – Waging, or attempting to wage war, or abetting waging of war, against the Government of India

Section 124A – Sedition

Chapter VIII- Of Offences against the Public Tranquility

Section 141 – Unlawful assembly

Section 142 – Being member of unlawful assembly

Section 143 – Punishment

Section 144 – Joining unlawful assembly armed with deadly weapon

Section 145 – Joining or continuing in unlawful assembly, knowing it has been commanded to disperse

Section 146 – Rioting

Section 147 – Punishment for rioting

Section 148 – Rioting, armed with deadly weapon

Section 149 – Every member of unlawful assembly guilty of offence committed in prosecution of common object

Section 159 – Affray

Chapter X- Of Contempts of Lawful; Authority of Public Servants

Section 179 – Refusing to answer public servant authorised to question

Section 182 – False information, with intent to cause public servant to use his lawful power to the injury of another person

Chapter XI- Of False Evidence and Offence against Public Justice

Section 191 – Giving false evidence

Chapter XIV- Of offences affecting the Public Health, Safety, Convenience, Decency and Morals

Section 268 – Public nuisance

Section 292 – Sale, etc, of obscene books, etc

Section 293 – Sale, etc, of obscene objects to young person

Section 294 – Obscene acts and songs

Chapter XV- Offences relating to religion

Section 295 – Injuring or defiling place of worship with intent to insult the religion of any class

Section 295A – Deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs

Section 296 – Disturbing religious assembly

Chapter XVI- Of Offences Affecting the Human Body

Section 299 – Culpable homicide to Section 309 – Attempt to commit suicide

Section 319 – Hurt to Section 338 – Causing grievous hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others

Section 339 – Wrongful restraint

Section 340 – Wrongful confinement

Section 349 – Force

Section 350 – Criminal force

Section 351 – Assault

Section 354 – Assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty

Section 354A – Sexual harassment and punishment for sexual harassment

Section 354B – Assault or use of criminal force to woman with intent to disrobe

Section 354C – Voyeurism

Section 354D – Stalking

Section 359 – Kidnapping

Section 360 – Kidnapping from India

Section 361 – Kidnapping from lawful guardianship

Section 362 – Abduction

Section 375 – Rape

Section 376 – Punishment for rape

Section 376D – Gang rape

Section 376DA – Punishment for gang rape on woman under sixteen years of age

Section 376DB – Punishment for gang rape on woman under twelve years of age

Section 376E – Punishment for repeat offenders

Section 377 – Unnatural offences

Chapter XVII- Of Offences Against Property

Section 378 – Theft

Section 383 – Extortion

Section 390 – Robbery

Section 391 – Dacoity

Section 396 – Dacoity with murder

Section 399 – Making preparation to commit dacoity

Section 403 – Dishonest misappropriation of property

Section 405 – Criminal breach of trust

Section 410 – Stolen Property

Section 413 – Habitually dealing in stolen property

Section 414 – Assisting in concealment of stolen property

Section 415 – Cheating

Section 420 – Cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property

Section 425 – Mischief

Section 441 – Criminal Trespass to Section 446 – House-breaking by night

Chapter XX- Of Offences Relating to Marriage

Section 493 – Cohabitation caused by a man deceitfully inducing a belief of lawful marriage

Section 494 – Marrying again during the lifetime of husband or wife

Section 495 – Same offence with concealment of former marriage from person with whom subsequent marriage is contracted

Section 496 – Marriage ceremony fraudulently gone through without lawful marriage

Section 497 – Adultery

Section 498 – Enticing or taking away or detaining with criminal intent a married woman

Chapter XXA- Of Cruelty by Husband or Relatives of Husband

Section 498A – Cruelty by husband or relatives of husband

Chapter XXI- Of Defamation

Section 499 – Defamation

Chapter XXII- Of Criminal intimidation, Insult and Annoyance

Section 503 – Criminal intimidation

Section 506 – Punishment for criminal intimidation

Section 509 – Word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman

Chapter XXIII- Of Attempts to Commit Offences

Section 511 – Attempts to commit offences


In conclusion, a focused study of the sections mentioned above from the IPC provides a foundational understanding of crucial legal concepts governing criminal offences in India. Mastering only these sections can be beneficial for all competitive exams. These sections cover a broad spectrum, whether crimes against individuals, property, public order, or moral turpitude.

Which specific IPC section do you find most intriguing or essential, and why? 

Share your thoughts in the comments!

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About the Author: Kakoli Nath | 275 Post(s)

She is a Legal Content Manager at Finology Legal! With a Masters in Intellectual Property Rights (IPR), a BBA.LL.B from ITM University, and patent analyst training from IIPTA, she truly specializes in her field. Her passion for IPR and Criminal laws is evident from her advanced certification in Forensic Psychology and Criminal Profiling from IFS, Pune.

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