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Movable Property

Section 22 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860.

The words “movable property” are intended to include corporeal property of every description, except land and things attached to the earth or permanently fastened to anything which is attached to the earth.

This definition is restricted to corporeal property; it excludes all choses in action. Property means things or thing owned. A thing thrown away as waste loses its value and can no longer be regarded as a property.

Corporeal property is property which may be perceived by the senses, in contradistinction to incorporeal rights, which are not so perceivable, as obligations of all kinds. Thus, salt produced on a swamp, and papers forming part of the record of a case, are property within the meaning of this section. A cheque is movable property. But the right in the cheque or record of the case is incorporeal property.

Land and things attached to the earth: This section does not exempt “earth and things attached to the earth,” but “land and things attached to the earth”; “land”’ and “earth'’ are not synonymous terms, and there is a great distinction between ‘‘the earth, ’ and “earth”. By severance, things that are immoveable become moveable; and it is perfectly correct to call those things attached which can be severed ; and undoubtedly it is possible to sever earth from the earth and attach it again thereto. Earth, that is soil, and all the component parts of the soil, inclusive of stones and minerals, when severed from the earth or land to which it was attached, are moveable property capable of being the subject of theft. Any part of “the earth,” whether it be stones or sand or clay or any other component, when severed from “the earth,” is moveable property.

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