An Analysis of the Procedure of Trial of Summons Cases

By | November 27, 2019
Carbolic V Smoke Ball Company [1892]

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Summons Cases and Warrant cases are two types of cases tried by a Magistrate on the basis of the offences that have been committed by the accused. Section 2 (w) of the Code defines summons cases as those cases which are not determined to be a warrant case.

Thus, it is vital to define a warrant case now. Section 2 (x) defines warrant cases where the punishment prescribed by the law for the offence tried is more than 2 years of imprisonment including incarceration for life and the death penalty.

Hence, cases relating to the trial of offences for which the prescribed punishment is 2 years of imprisonment or less. This article, therefore, deals with procedure and manner of trial of offences which are punishable with an incarceration period exceeding 2 years.


The Code of Criminal Procedure perceives four separate techniques for the procedure in the trial of criminal cases by magistrates, specifically:-

  1. the methodology endorsed for the trial of summons cases,
  2. the methodology endorsed for the trial of warrant cases founded on police reports,
  3. the methodology endorsed for the trial of other warrant-cases and
  4. the methodology endorsed for summary trials.

Expressed, by and large, there is, in the summons-case, commonly a notice of the substance of the proof and guard and no more. With respect to different trials under the steady gaze of a Court of Sessions or a magistrate empowers the managing official to have the proof of each witness brought down recorded as a hard copy, in the court language, from his correspondence in open court.

In cases where the managing official has brought down the proof with his very own hand or has made it be brought down recorded as a hard copy from his transcription in open court as set down in sub-section (1) of section 356, he need not make a notice of the substance of what the observers remove.

The denounced in a criminal trial will be allowed to be present during the trial, except if it gets vital for him to stay standing for a particular reason, for example, recognizable proof or something else. Such office agreed to the blamed will notwithstanding, be subject to the setup show followed in the Courts that everybody concerned should stand when the Presiding Officer enters and leaves the Court.

Trial of Summons Cases

As already mentioned above, a summons case is one where the offence tried is punishable with an imprisonment of two years or less. These cases are ushered as summons case because the Magistrate is obliged to issue a summon to the accused person informing him of the offences alleged to be committed by him and giving him an opportunity to appear voluntarily.

If the accused person fails to appear on the issue of summons, the Magistrate assumes the power to issue a warrant of arrest against such person.

In a summons-case, when the blamed individual is under the watchful eye of the Court, points of interest of the offence of which he is blamed are expressed to him and he is asked to show cause why he ought not to be indicted.

No conventional charge is readied. On the off chance that the charged concedes that he has submitted the offence, his affirmation ought to be recorded as almost as could be expected under the circumstances, in his very own words; and on the off chance that he shows no adequate reason why he ought not be indicted, he might be sentenced as needs be.

On the off chance that the denounced denies that he has submitted the offence, the complainant and his observers must be inspected, the charged must be heard, and proof created by him taken. The gatherings are required to have their particular observers present at the conference and it is available to them to apply to the Court, in adequate time, to give a procedure to constrain the participation of any observer or the creation of any report or other thing required in proof.

The expense of the procedures and the sensible costs of witnesses ought to be paid by the gatherings, individually.

At the point when the parties and their proof have been heard, the magistrate will pass a request for vindication or conviction, all things considered. A blamed individual might be indicted for any offence triable as a summons-case of which he might be seen as blameworthy; whatever the idea of the offence indicated in the protest or summons.

In a summons-case organized on the grievance, if the complainant neglects to go to on any day fixed for hearing, the blamed ought to be absolved except if the magistrate thinks appropriate to defer the consultation to some other day. The magistrate can likewise abstain from the complainant’s participation and continue with the case.

A summons-case may, with the authorization of the Magistrate, and for adequate grounds, be pulled back at any phase before the request is passed and the blamed absolved. Section 345 of the Code allows certain offences, some of which are summons cases, to be intensified without the consent of the Court, and ought to be perused with section 248.

Different offences, including that of causing grievous hurt, culpable under section 325, Indian Penal Code, are compoundable with the authorization of the Court. Offences may, with the authorization of the Appellate Court, be aggravated after conviction, and, with the consent of the Court to which the case has been submitted, after responsibility.

In a summons-case initiated generally than on protest, the magistrate may for adequate motivations to be recorded by him, stop procedures at any phase without articulating any judgment both of absolution or conviction and may immediately discharge the charged; yet a magistrate of the second or second rate class can act as such just with the past authorization of the District Magistrate.

It most of the time happens that candidates for amendment ask that no appropriate open door was given to them to call observers to disprove the proof for the arraignment, and there is regularly nothing on the record to show that this claim isn’t all around established.

Under section 244 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, the charged, in a summons case, is essentially liable for the creation of his proof upon the arrival of hearing; yet even in these cases the Court should, as an issue of safeguard, at the finish of the case for the arraignments determine from the denounced whether he has any observers, and ought not decline to give him a further chance of bringing or gathering observers who may not be available in Court except if apparently their proof isn’t material or that the blamed has been wilfully careless in the issue.

In each summons-case in which no observers are created for the protection, the Court should record either that the blamed doesn’t wish to call observers, or that for reasons expressed he has been denied a further chance of doing as such.

All together that people denounced in summons-cases may have a superior chance of realizing what the law expects of them, a statement has been added to the type of summons notice the individual tended to that, except if he is set up to concede the offence with which he is charged, he should expedite his witnesses with him the day fixed for hearing.


  1. N. Chandrasekharan Pillai, R.V. Kelkar’s Criminal Procedure (6th ed. 2014).
  2. Ratanlal & Dhirajlal, Commentary on the Code of Criminal Procedure (18th ed. 2006).

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