Tuesday, 31 May 2022

Article on Sec. 256 Cr.P.C

 Article on u/s 256 of Cr.P.C


  • The Code of Criminal Procedure is an elaborate and a compilation of the criminal procedure to be followed in the criminal cases. U/s 256 of Cr.P.C speaks as follows:


“Non- appearance or death of complainant.

(1) If the summons has been issued on complaint, and on the day appointed for the appearance of the accused, or any day subsequent thereto to which the hearing may be adjourned, the complainant does not appear, the Magistrate shall, notwithstanding anything hereinbefore contained, acquit the accused, unless for some reason he thinks it proper to adjourn the hearing of the case to some other day: Provided that where the complainant is represented by a pleader or by the officer conducting the prosecution or where the Magistrate is of opinion that the personal attendance of the complainant is not necessary, the Magistrate may dispense with his attendance and proceed with the case.

(2) The provisions of sub- section (1) shall, so far as may be, apply also to cases where the non- appearance of the complainant is due to his death.”

  • According to Sec. 317 of Cr.P.C, a petition is to be filed when the accused is unable to present the accused before the court on the date of appearance. This is famously called as ‘absent petition’. 

  • In the same sense, when the complainant fails to be present on the date of appearance, the Magistrate has powers to acquit the accused just for non- appearance of the complainant.

  • Hence, a petition u/s 256 of the Cr.P.C needs to be filed whenever the complainant could not be present in the court on the date of appearance, when his presence is needed, in order to pray to before the Hon’ble Court to adjourn the matter to the next date of the appearance.

  • The only exception for filing this petition is the non-appearance of the complainant is due to death.


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