CLAT 2011 Question 189

Instructions

This section consists o( ten problems (with 45 questions) in total. Each problem consists of a set of rules and facts. Apply the specified rules to the set of facts and answer the questions. In answering the following questions, you should not rely on any rule(s) except the rule(s) that are supplied for every problem. Further, you should not assume any fact other than those stated in the problem. The aim is to test your ability to properly apply a rule to a given set of facts, even when the result is absurd or unacceptable for any other reason. It is not the aim to test any knowledge of law you may already possess.

Question 189

Rules:
A. Whoever intending to take any moveable property out of the possession of any person without that person's consent, moves that property out of his or her possession, is said to commit theft.
B. A person who, without lawful excuse, damages any property belonging to another intending to damage any such property shall be guilty of causing criminal damage.
C. Damage means any impairment of the value of a property.

Facts:Veena, an old lady of 78 years, used to live with her grand-daughter Indira. Veena was ill and therefore bed-ridden for several months. In those months, she could not tolerate any noise and it became quite difficult to clean her room. After she died, Indira hired a cleaner, Lucky, to clean the room and throw away any rubbish that may be there.There was a pile of old newspapers which Veena had stacked in a corner of her room. Lucky asked Indira if he should clear away the pile of old newspapers, to which she said yes. Lucky took the pile to a municipality rubbish dump. While Lucky was sorting and throwing away the newspapers, he was very surprised to find a beautiful painting in between two sheets of paper. He thought that Indira probably wouldn’t want this old painting back especially because it was torn in several pi and the colour was fading. He took the painting home, mounted it on a wooden frame and hang it on the wall of his bedroom. Unknown to him the painting was an old masterpiece, and worth twenty thousand rupees. Before mount the painting, Lucky pasted it on a plain sheet of
paper so that it does not tear any more. By doing so, he made its professional restoration very difficult and thereby reduced its value by half. Lucky's neighbour Kamala discovered that the painting belonged to Indira. With the motive of returning the painting to Indira, Kamala climbed through an open window into Lucky'room when he was away one afternoon and removed the painting from his house.

If Lucky had discovered the painting before leaving Indira's house rather than at the rubbish dump, would he have been guilty of theft in this case'?



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