28 April 2020

What procedure should be adopted by court when chargesheet is filed against some accused out of several accused persons?


   The catch comes when against one or more accused persons, a Report labelling them responsible for commission of the offence(s) is submitted vide chargesheet and it is also indicated that investigation is pending against the other named/unknown accused or otherwise. In such a situation, the Court has two options:

   1. It may wait for the prosecution to submit further Report stating that no further investigation is pending or contemplated and taking into consideration all Reports submitted, proceed thereafter, OR,
   2. Depending on the peculiar facts and circumstances of the case at hand, and after hearing learned counsel for the prosecution and the accused against whom chargesheet is submitted but the prosecution has informed the Court that investigation is incomplete being in progress, the Court is not handicapped or bound not to proceed to take cognizance and move to the subsequent stage(s) as contemplated under  the Code.

   The above would necessarily mean that in one case, for an/some accused person(s), further proceedings shall continue through further stages, and concerning other accused, either named or unknown, the case shall not proceed till such time the police/prosecution submit further/ Final Report.

   In such scenario, the Court concerned may bifurcate the case, 'splitting-up' as called in common parlance, by creating an extra record of the same case, called the 'split-up record' in common parlance, and proceed with the main original case against the person/persons before the Court against whom it has taken cognizance, in accordance with law. [Para No.58 to 60]

Patna High Court

Aman Kumar
The State Of Bihar

Decided on 20/04/2020

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