Section 387 of Indian Penal Code, 1860 – Explained!
The use of the words ‘in order to the committing of extortion’ show that commission of extortion is not necessary. The offender must put or attempt to put any person in fear of death or of grievous hurt to that person or to any other person. This offence is different from the offence of attempted robbery under section 393. Under section 387 the fear is of death or of grievous hurt while in section 393 the fear is of instant death or instant hurt or instant wrongful restraint under which the thing extorted must be delivered then and there.
Thus where the accused wrote a threatening letter to the complainant that to save his own life and the life of his child he must pay a ransom money amounting to sixteen thousand rupees, it was held that the accused had committed an offence under section 387. In another case, it was ruled that feigning of an attempt to commit suicide in order to extort money would be an offence under this section.
The offence under section 387 is cognizable, non-bailable and non-compoundable, and is triable by magistrate of the first class.