Give a brief description of the procedure to be followed by the Magistrate in the trial of a summons case.

Give a brief description of the procedure to be followed by the Magistrate in the trial of a summons case.


Procedure to be followed by Magistrates in the trial of summons Cases Chapter 20 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 provides for the procedure for the trial of summons cases by Magistrates as described in sections 251 to 259.

Section Summary of Prosecution to tell him the characteristics of the offense of which he is charged the magistrate shall ask him whether he pleads guilty
or wants to defend.

Section 252 Conviction on the guardian of guilty According to this section, if the accused confesses to being guilty, the magistrate shall record his statement in the words of the accused.
and use his discretionary power to prove him guilty

Section 253 Conviction on the guardian of being guilty in the absence of the accused in petty matters

Where a summons is issued under section 206 and the accused is also admitting that yes I am guilty but he does not want to appear before the magistrate

the accused either himself or by his advocate

Writes a letter to the magistrate stating that he is guilty and
shall also pay fine along with the summons, as may be prescribed by post.

The magistrate may exercise his discretionary power on the statement of his being guilty and in his absence, prove him guilty.

shall pass an order to pay the fine mentioned in the summons and the amount remitted by the accused shall be added to the fine.

Section 254 procedure and not to be convicted

1) If the Magistrate does not prove the accused guilty under section 252 or section 253, he shall proceed to hear the prosecution and to take all such evidence as he may produce in his defense.

(2) The Magistrate may if he thinks fit on the application of the prosecution accused, issue a summons directing the attendance of any witness or the production of any document or other

(3) The Magistrate may, before summoning any witness on such application, neglect that his reasonable expenses to be incurred in appearing for the trial may be deposited in the Court.

Under section 253 if friendship be made, further proceedings Magistrate shall give an opportunity of being heard to both the parties shall be produced by both the parties Appearance of any witness on the application of the accused shall be called for the appearance of any document before issuing the attendance of the witness to the party may order the deposit of any cost incurred in doing

Section 255 acquittal or conviction
1) If on taking all the evidence under section 254, the Magistrate finds that he is not guilty, he may order an acquittal.

2) If the Magistrate finds that he is guilty and no action has been taken under sections 325, 300, he may pass a sentence according to law.

3) to a Magistrate under sections 252 and 255, if there is a sentence which ought to be passed,

for such an offense
– that which has been accepted
– is presented by the evidence

Even if the complaint appears like a summons

Section 256 Non-appearance or death of the complainant

Further proceedings by the Magistrate when the complainant does not appear on the appointed date

1) adjourn the hearing
may be acquitted or declared guilty of the accused

but where the representation of the complainant is being conducted by an advocate or prosecuting officer or
If the Magistrate feels that the presence of the complainant is not necessary, then the Magistrate can also discharge him from attendance and proceed further in the matter.

Section 257 Taking back complaint 

The complainant may withdraw the complaint before the final order in any case

When satisfied the magistrate that there is sufficient ground
then the accused shall be acquitted against whom the complaint was made

Note :under section 257 is applicable only in summons cases

Section 258 Power to stop proceedings in certain cases:-

A Judicial Judicial Magistrate in a brief connection other than a complaint
1) Magistrate of the First Class
2) With the prior permission of the Chief Judicial Magistrate For reasons that will now be written

1) The appointee may stay the proceeding at any stage without pronouncing the acquittal

2) If the proceeding is stopped after recording the accompanying two companions, then pronounce the judgment of acquittal

Discharge or justification of any other accused

Section 259 Power to convert summon cases into warrant cases
1) be that summons case
2) There is a provision of imprisonment for more than 6 months
3) Must be in the interest of justice

If these conditions are satisfied, the magistrate can convert a summons case into a warrant case.

Note: If a summons case is converted into a warrant case under this section, the matter shall be re-tried from the beginning.

Difference between Summons case and Warrant case

 Summons case 

Warrant case

Summons Case Section 2(b)

1) In a summons case, the punishment of imprisonment for a term which may extend to two years .

2) A summary procedure may be adopted for the conviction or acquittal of the accused . 

3) The summons case begins when the statement is recorded to the accused and the prosecution’s evidence is given on the refusal of the statement . 

4) The complainant can withdraw the complaint with the permission of the court.

5) In summons cases the accused may be convicted or acquitted.

6) Summons case once concluded cannot be revived.

In warrant cases, the punishment is death, imprisonment for life, and imprisonment for more than two years.


The abbreviation process is not followed

The warrant case begins with the intention of the accused, after which the statement of the accused is recorded.


complaint is not allowed to take back


In warrant cases, in addition to conviction or acquittal, an order of acquittal can also be made.

The case can be revived if the accused is justified in a warrant case.