The Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) is the main legislation on procedure for administration of substantive criminal law in India. It provides the machinery for the investigation of crime, apprehension of suspected criminals, collection of evidence, determination of guilt or innocence of the accused person and the determination of punishment of the guilty. Additionally, it also deals with public nuisance, prevention of offences and maintenance of wife, child and parents.

At present, the Act contains 484 Sections, 2 Schedules and 56 Forms. The Sections are divided into 37 Chapters.

The following procedure is followed before getting the final judgment:

I. Registration of FIR

The registration of FIR either on the basis of the information furnished by the informant under Section 154(1) of the Code or otherwise under Section 157(1) of the Code is obligatory.

The obligation to register FIR has inherent advantages:

  1. It is the first step to ‘access to justice’ for a victim.
  2. It upholds the ‘Rule of Law’ inasmuch as the ordinary person brings forth the commission of a cognizable crime in the knowledge of the State.
  3. It also facilitates swift investigation and sometimes even prevention of the crime. In both cases, it only effectuates the regime of law.
  4. It leads to less manipulation in criminal cases and lessens incidents of ‘ante-dates’ FIR or deliberately delayed FIR.

II. Requirements to be followed in all cases of arrest or detention

The police personnel carrying out the arrest and handling the interrogation of the arrestee should bear accurate.

  1. The particulars of all such police personnel who handle interrogation of the arrestee must be recorded in a register.
  2. To prepare a memo of arrest at the time of arrest and such memo shall be attested by at least one witness.
  3. A person who has been arrested or detained shall be entitled to have one friend or relative or other person known to him or having interest in his welfare being informed, as soon as practicable,
  4. The time, place of arrest and venue of custody of an arrestee must be notified by the police where the next friend or relative of the arrestee lives
  5. The person arrested must be made aware of this right to have someone informed of his arrest or detention.
  6. The arrestee should be subjected to medical examination.
  7. Copies of all the documents including the memo of arrest, referred to above, should be sent to the Illaqa Magistrate for his record.

The arrestee may be permitted to meet his lawyer during interrogation, though not throughout the

III. Bail

Criminal offences are further classified under the Cr.P.C. into bailable and non-bailable offences. In case of bailable offences, an accused is entitled to bail as a matter of right on furnishing of surety. In case of non-bailable offences, bail is a matter of discretion with the courts and the discretion becomes narrower depending upon the severity of the punishment that an offence entails.

Whenever an application for bail is made to a court, the first question that it has to decide is whether the offence for which the accused is being prosecuted is bailable or otherwise. If the offence is bailable, bail will be granted under Section 436 of the Code of Criminal Procedure without more ado; but if the offence is not bailable, further considerations will arise and the court will decide the question of grant of bail in the light of those further considerations.

IV. Framing of Charge 

The purpose of framing a charge is to give intimation to the accused of clear, unambiguous and precise notice of the nature of accusation that the accused is called upon to meet in the course of a trial. Words in charge, taken in sense of law under which offence is punishable. In every charge words used in describing an offence shall be deemed to have been used in the sense attached to them respectively by the law under which such offence is punishable.”

211. Contents of charge

Every charge under this Code shall state the offence with which the accused is charged. If the law which creates the offence does not give it any specific name, so much of the definition of the offence must be stated as to give the accused notice of the matter with which he is charged.

V. Judgement

Judgement is the final reasoned decision of the Court as to the guilt or innocence of the accused. Where the accused is found guilty, the judgement must also contain an order requiring the accused to undergo punishment or treatment.

Every court must deliver the judgement in the language of that court as determined by the State Government. It must contain the points that lead to the determination of guilt or innocence. It usually commences with facts and must indicate careful analysis of evidence. It must also specify the offence under the penal code or such other specific law as well as the punishment sentenced. If acquitted the offence of which the accused is so acquitted must be specified along with a direction that the accused be set at liberty.

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