Section 254 IPC: Delivery of Coin as Genuine, Which, When First Possessed, the Deliverer Did Not Know to Be Altered

Section 254 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) deals with the delivery of a coin as genuine, even when the deliverer did not initially know that it had been altered. This legal provision is a crucial aspect of the Indian criminal justice system and plays a significant role in cases related to the authenticity of coins.

section 254 ipc

Understanding the intricacies of this section is vital for legal professionals, collectors, and anyone involved in the exchange of coins.

Understanding Section 254 IPC

Section 254 IPC addresses situations where an individual delivers a coin, believing it to be genuine, without knowledge of any alteration. The section underscores the importance of knowledge or lack thereof in determining criminal liability. In essence, it seeks to ensure that those who deliver altered coins with the genuine intent do not face unnecessary legal consequences.

Essential Elements of Section 254 IPC

To comprehend the implications of this section, it’s essential to break down its essential elements:

  • Delivery as Genuine: The act of delivering the coin as if it were authentic is central to this provision.
  • Lack of Knowledge: The deliverer must not have knowledge of the coin’s alteration at the time of delivery.

Historical Perspective

Section 254 IPC has been part of the Indian Penal Code for several years, and it has witnessed amendments and revisions over time to align with evolving legal principles and societal needs. Understanding its historical context helps in comprehending its current relevance.

Importance of Knowledge in Criminal Offenses

A fundamental principle in criminal law is that ignorance of the law is not a valid excuse for committing an offense. However, Section 254 IPC introduces a nuanced approach. It emphasizes that in cases of delivering a coin as genuine, the lack of knowledge regarding its alteration can be a significant factor in determining culpability.

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Burden of Proof

In cases related to Section 254 IPC, the burden of proof rests on the prosecution. They must demonstrate that the deliverer lacked knowledge about the coin’s alteration and that the delivery was made with genuine intentions.

Case Studies

To illustrate the practical application of Section 254 IPC, let’s examine a few case studies. These examples will help in understanding how the law is interpreted and enforced in real-world scenarios.

Challenges and Controversies

Like any legal provision, Section 254 IPC is not without its challenges and controversies. Some argue that it may create room for abuse or exploitation, while others believe it strikes the right balance between intent and knowledge.

Impact on Coin Collectors and Antique Dealers

This section can have implications for coin collectors and antique dealers who may unknowingly possess altered coins. To ensure compliance with the law, they should exercise caution and due diligence in their transactions.


Section 254 IPC serves as a critical provision in the Indian Penal Code, emphasizing the significance of knowledge in criminal offenses related to delivering altered coins as genuine. It strikes a balance between intent and ignorance, and its historical evolution underscores its relevance in today’s legal landscape.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, in cases covered by Section 254 IPC, lack of knowledge about coin alteration can be a significant factor in determining legal culpability.

Antique dealers should exercise due diligence in verifying the authenticity of coins they handle and maintain records to demonstrate their genuine intent.

The law does not provide exceptions, but it emphasizes the importance of genuine intent and lack of knowledge in determining criminal liability.

Penalties can include fines and imprisonment, but the specific consequences may vary depending on the circumstances and the court’s discretion.