The Charge under Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973
What is charge ?
The charge means establishment of the allegation(s) against the accused in a criminal case. The charge informs the accused about the allegations filed against him. It must pass on to him with adequate clearness and certainty. It contains what the prosecution expects to prove against him and which he should protect. The fundamental principle of criminal law is that the accused ought to inform with certainty and precision the exact nature of the charge leveled against him.
Contents of charge
- Every charge shall state the offence which charged to the accused.
- If the law has any specific name for offences. Then the such name of offence will appear in the charge.
- If the law dose not create name for an offence. Then the definition of the offence shall instituted in the charge. So as the accused can understand for what offence he has charged.
- It shall mention such law and section of law under which such offence mentioned or committed.
- The fact that the charge made is equivalent to a statement that every legal condition required by law to constitute the offence charged was fulfilled in the particular case.
- The charge shall written in the language of the Court.
- The accused previously convicted, liable for enhancement of punishment or different kind of punishment. It intends to prove such previous conviction for the purpose of affecting the punishment. The Court may think fit to award for the subsequent offence, the fact date and place of the previous, conviction shall stated in the charge; and if such statement has omitted, the Court may add it at any time before sentence passed.
Particulars as to time, place and person
- The charge shall contain particulars of the time and place of the alleged offence. The person against whom, or the thing (if any) in respect of which, it committed, as reasonably sufficient to give the accused notice of the matter with which charge filled.
- When the accused charged with criminal breach of trust or dishonest misappropriation of money or other movable property. It shall specify the gross sum or described the movable property in respect of which the offence is alleged. The dates between which the offence alleged to have committed without specifying particular items or exact dates. The charge so framed shall deemed to be a charge of one offence within the meaning of section 219:Provided that the time included between the first and last of such dates shall not exceed one year
When manner of committing offence must be stated
If the particulars of the case mentioned in section 211 and 212, does not give the accused a clear picture of what he has charged for. The charge shall also contain the manner in which offence committed. So that accused can understand the charge properly.
Words in charge taken in sense of law under which offence is punishable
Effects of errors
No error in stating either the offence or the particulars required to be stated and no omission to state the offence or those particulars, shall be regarded at any stage of the case as material, unless the accused was in fact misled by such error or omission, and it has occasioned a failure of justice.