A Riddle on Murder: (and an exercise in logic)

(edited, to make it easier, on 18 March, 2008… thanks Adam/anon for suggesting a simpler story) 

There are two twins. One of them ALWAYS tells a lie. While the other could tell the truth or tell a lie.
One of them, whose name is Santosh (he’s the guy who ALWAYS lies), commits a murder.
The twins stand before the judge, knowing that Santosh committed the murder, asks the first fellow, “Are you Santosh?”
The guy says, “Yes I am.”
With this information, the judge was able to figure out which of the two was the murderer.

Can you?

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21 Responses to “A Riddle on Murder: (and an exercise in logic)”


  1. 1 adsad May 31, 2007 at 4:30 am

    hey hey hey i’ve been spending a few hours on this riddle. . .
    but i cant seem to figure it out. . so pease if you can send the answer to my email or post it plz. !!1

    • 2 Anonymous September 20, 2011 at 5:19 am

      XD it’s not that hard. Santosh can never tell the truth, therefore he couldn’t respond to the question in any other way besides ‘no’. Therefore, the twin who said it was the one who is not Santosh, making Santosh the other.

      • 3 Jack Shrout November 3, 2011 at 4:29 am

        Here’s what I’m thinking, though. Let’s call the one who isn’t Santosh, Mantosh. So if the judge was asking that question to Mantosh, who sometimes lies, is it not possible that he could’ve said “yes” to being Santosh?

  2. 4 NAyK June 4, 2007 at 10:34 pm

    To adsad:

    Sorry about this, adsad, but this is a riddle I heard many years ago and I remember it had a solution. However, when I recovered my old files, all I had was the riddle, and no solution. So I put it up here, partly to open this question to the “world wide web” so that others can maybe find the solution.

    I must admit that I too spent a long long time trying to figure it out… but couldn’t.

    All I can say is that the question IS authentic. And I do remember it had a solution. But I’ve forgotten it.

    Perhaps… for all time!

  3. 5 Adam March 17, 2008 at 12:10 am

    the one who always lies has to lie when asked….”Are You Sanotsh” the only possible lie is “No” if he is Santosh…so the second twin is santosh

  4. 6 Anon March 17, 2008 at 3:07 am

    Santosh always has to lie no matter what. SO if he is asked are you santosh, he will say no i am not.

    The other guy lied, cos he can decide to tell the truth or lie, or whatever he wants

  5. 7 Anonymous November 13, 2008 at 2:00 am

    it was the guy hu said ‘yes i am’ to the judge because he is lieing saying he is santosh when he aint, if the guy had a choice he would say his own name because the murderer knows santosh did it (y)

  6. 8 Anonymous November 13, 2008 at 2:02 am

    it was the guy hu said ‘yes i am’ to the judge because he is lieing saying he is santosh when he aint, if the guy had a choice he would say his own name because the *judge* knows santosh did it (y)

    Soz bout da mistake people

  7. 9 Anonymous November 13, 2008 at 2:03 am

    your welcome :)

  8. 10 Julie December 30, 2008 at 1:37 am

    Thats Not Hard At All. It Took Me Like 10 Seconds To Figure This Out. If Santosh Always lies, Then when The Judge Asked, Are You Santosh?! He would have said. no.. But the other twin can lie and tell the truth. so he decided to lie, and say yes, i am santosh.. but hes a dumb ass. cuz if he would have said no, then both of the twins would have said no, leaving the judge with much more of a problem to figure out who’s who..

  9. 11 Julie December 30, 2008 at 1:40 am

    Heres a Riddle..

    A Man Was Found Dead On Sunday Morning. His Wife Immideatly Called The Police. They Came Over And Investigated, and asked everyone questions. these are everyones allibis :

    Wife : Sleeping
    Maid : Checking The Mail
    Gardener : Piking vegetables
    Cook : Cooking Breakfeast
    Butle : Cleaning The Closet.

    The Police Immidiatly Took The Murderer In Custaty.

    WHO DID IT XD WHO MURDERED THE MAN!?!?!?!?!?? XD AND HOW DID THE POLICE KNOW!?

  10. 13 Anonymous April 12, 2009 at 12:40 am

    The Maid. There is no mail on Sundays.

  11. 14 Jacob July 14, 2009 at 1:28 am

    I figured it out!!!! Yay! Me and my bro were thinking for a long time, here was his idea.

    The judge was on his way to the trial, he had got stuck in traffic for hours and was pissed off. So when he is in the trial he instead of trying to figure out the case, he pulls out his 12 gauge under his desk and asks the first fellow, “Do you want me to shoot you?” The man imediatly says, “NOOOOO!” The second fellow is asked the same question and he says, “Yes, go right ahead.” The judge then blows the crap out of the fellow. (Santosh) If the second fellow was Santosh he would not lie, therfore he would have to say, “Yes, shoot me.” If the other guy was asked the question he had the option of saying truth, therfore he would most definetly say, “NOOOOO, do not shoot me” Therfore the man who is asked to be shot, is Santosh

    Clever eh?

    My answer

    The guy who was asked the question is not Santosh, if it were and he said he was Santosh, he would be telling truth, and Santosh is not allowed to do that. Therfore the guy who is asked the question must not be Santosh, he tells a lie and means the other fellow is Santosh. The person who was not spoken to, is most definitely Santosh.

  12. 15 Carri Toppert January 13, 2010 at 8:45 pm

    If one of the twin always lies and his name is Santosh, then he would lie if he were asked his name because he always lies. If the other twin sometimes lies, then this would be lying instance where he is lying because his name is not Santosh.

  13. 16 elliot January 28, 2010 at 11:01 am

    easy santosh can only lie so the judge asked the innocent one whether he was santosh

  14. 17 Kundan April 24, 2010 at 2:05 pm

    He killed his own brother. So there is only one left.

  15. 18 None April 23, 2011 at 11:27 am

    The brother that sometimes tells a lie is the murderer. Santosh ALWAYS tell a lie. the judge asked him what his name is. If he was Santosh, he would have lied and said no, but the brother who sometimes tell a lie and sometimes tells the truth could say yes. by the way, I’m eleven.

  16. 19 Charles May 12, 2011 at 4:33 pm

    the murderer was santosh, and not the guy who was asked question. If santosh were asked question, he would have lied saying, “I am not Santosh.” So the guy who was asked question was not Santosh, but his brother – lets call him A. When A was asked the question, he simply said he was santosh. But because he was not Santosh, he was lying. So the other person must be Santosh, and hence the murderer.

  17. 20 Anonymous September 3, 2011 at 11:25 am

    It was most likely that the fellow NOT asked the question was Santosh and was thus the murderer…
    Why? Because it was said that the other twin can tell the truth or a lie and in saying that he was Santosh was already telling a lie since Santosh could not been able to tell the truth and probably made it clear that Santosh was the other twin who was not asked the question…

  18. 21 shanny-lee ann May 16, 2012 at 3:14 pm

    okay i know this is probably not the answer but i couldn’t help myself, if you read the riddle again it says ‘they are twins’ it never says anything about identical twins. :)


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