Dec 26, 2017
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What is the purpose of the code of Criminal Procedure, 1973?

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Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973


Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 came into force on  1st April, 1974. Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 gives machinery for the investigation of crime,  harm of criminals, collection of evidence, determination of mens rea or innocence of the accused and the determination of punishment of the guilty. It also deals with public nuisance, prevention of offences and maintenance of wife, child and parents.

Law commission and its report

Code of criminal procedure is applicable to all criminal proceedings in India (except those in the States of Jammu and Kashmir and Nagaland the Tribal Areas in Assam). It extends to whole of India except Jammu and Kashmir and Nagaland. The central governments has amended the Act from time to time. Two important amendments were of 1923 and 1955. The amendment of 1955 was extensive and intention was to simplify procedure and also facilitate speedy disposal trails. In addition, State amendments also brought about separation of judiciary power from executive one. Apart from these amendments, the provisions of the Code of 1898 have remained practically unchanged. No attempt was made to comprehensively change the old code till Central Law Commission was set up in 1955.
The first Law Commission  formed in 1955. It presented its first Report (the Fourteenth Report) on the Reformation of both civil and criminal in 1958. It made some recommendations relating to criminal procedure, which required amendments to code. A systematic evaluation of code undertaken by commission for not only giving recommendations but also for attempting general revision.

Mainly, commission formed to suggest ways to remove the confusion between the conflicting Judgements of High courts, ways to secure and maintain uniformity, to consolidate law, and also to suggest improvement wherever possible. Law commission presented a comprehensive report for revision of the Code. It was Forty-first report. The report contained recommendations made in earlier reporst of commission.

Object and purpose of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973

The basic purpose of the Criminal Procedure Code to ensure a fair trial where no ones right infringed and also not unjustifiably favoured. The basic considerations of commission were that :

  1. there should fair trial proceeding for accused person and rule of natural justice should not infringed;
  2. Efforts  made to dispose of the trial expeditiously and to avoid delay in investigation and trial which is harmful
    not only to the individuals involved but also to society;
  3. the procedure should be simple and should also ensure fair justice to weaker section of community.

Some more important recommendations made for speedy disposal of the criminal cases:

  1. the initial or preliminary inquiry which was done before the trial, is eliminated for the Act as it used to cause delay in trial.
  2.  provisions for adoption of summons procedure for the trial of offences punishable with imprisonment up to two year as at present; this would enable a larger number of cases disposed of expeditiously;
  3. the scope of summary trials now expanded by including offences punishable with imprisonment up to one year as at present;
  4. summons procedure adopted for all summary trials;
  5. the powers of revision against interlocutory orders are eliminated as it was time consuming;
  6. the provision made for not entertaining cases by subordinate court on the mere intimation from a party of his intention to move a higher Court;
  7.  a further provision  made that the Court trying the transfer application shall not stay proceedings unless necessary to do so in the interest of justice;
  8.  adjournments cost should paid by party obtaining such order;
  9. provision made for the service of summons by registered post in certain cases;
  10. in petty cases, the accused enabled to plead guilty by post and to remit the fine specified in the summons;
  11. a Court of appeal or revision finds that there is any error, omission or irregularity in judgement or unable provide justice then it need not necessarily order retrial;
  12. the facility of part-heard cases continued by successors-in-office now available in respect of Courts of Magistrates is extended to Courts of Session.

Some of the more important changes intended to provide relief to the proper sections of the community are—

    1. provisions made to provide legal aid to weaker, accused in case , the State Government may extend this facility to other categories of cases
    2. the Court has power to order payment of compensation to victims by accused to lager extend.
    3. when the order given for examination of a witness, the cost incurred by defence including pleader’s fees paid by the prosecutio
    4. the accused given an opportunity to make representation against the punishment before its imposed
Article Categories:
Criminal law

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