This article is written by Shreya Tripathi student of Banasthali Vidyapith, Rajasthan. The author discusses Judgement, purpose and the process of Judgement.
Chapter XXVII of the Code of Criminal Procedure deals with Judgement. Here, you must be thinking that what is Judgement? After hearing both the sides, the final verdict or order that is passed by the Judge or bench of Judges is known as Judgement.
Concept of Judgement
Judgment is a very wide concept that is applied by everyone on a daily basis. A human being is engaged in different circumstances throughout the day that requires the ability to pass proper judgments. Therefore, it can be included as a fundamental part of the human thought process.
Taking judgments is crucial and for that proper authority should be assigned. Delivering a good judgment creates a strong image and perception of the justice delivery system and increases the confidence of the public in Judiciary and litigation. At all times, citizens look forward to being delivered just, fair and quality judgment. A well-written judgment is established with the analysis of facts and laws.
Section 353 to 365 of the Cr.P.C discusses Judgement. So, let’s proceed to Section 353 which explains “Judgement”.
“Judgement is necessary because God is God of Perfect Justice and our Judges are Christ.”
Case: In Surendra Singh vs. the State of U.P., A.I.R. 1954 SCR 330, The Supreme Court defined the term final verdict or final decision given by the Court to the parties and deliver in the open court by pronouncing it.
It is a written legal document which helps to resolve the dispute in a suit and finalizing the rights and liabilities of the individual. Judgment is a final order, verdict or decision given by the judge or magistrate on the ground of decree. A decree is an integral part of the judgment which is given by the judge. It should be precise and clear containing names of the parties, amount of money, deadline etc. Judgment is given in every trial in Criminal Court falling under its jurisdiction. It should be pronounced in the open court by the Presiding authority just after the termination of the trial procedure and notice should be served to each party and to its assigned leaders.
In Yelchuri Manohar vs. State of Andhra Pradesh, 2005 (2) ALD Cry 751, it was held that electronic media cannot give any leading element or part.
Purpose of Judgement:
- To determine whether the person is guilty or innocent– After considering all the facts, evidence and laws, courts take the final decision in a particular matter to set the position of the individual person whether he is guilty or innocent.
- For determining the rights and liabilities of the parties– Determination of rights and liabilities is the main work of the court and at the end.
- For the development of legal jurisprudence– When the court has heard all the facts and evidence from both the sides, certain new principles can be introduced which will affect the matter and help in the development of laws in various field.
For example, Donoghue vs. Stevenson case introduced the concept of Law of Negligence.
- To serve as a Precedent– In Common Law, the doctrine of precedent depends upon a good, relevant and honest judgment. In the future, these kinds of cases rely upon the jurisprudence.
- Provide accountability to judicial officers– Court of law is known as a temple for justice and the Judges are considered as God for giving justice. There is always an eye on the work and credibility of judges and magistrates. Delivering good judgments helps the public trust the Judiciary.
- The reason should be communicated to the parties– Both the parties along with their lawyers will be communicated will all the reasons on the resulting judgment of the case. Even if they lose the case, they will be informed on what grounds they lost the case. Proper communication should be maintained.
Note- In respect to informing the general public, the communication is done through writing judgment in raising questions.
- Provide a reasonable ground for an appeal in court– If either of the parties is not satisfied with the final decision, they can appeal to the higher court.
Failure to give a fair decision or judgment will destroy the idea of justice for an innocent person. Writing judgments is an art where there should be no hard and fast rules, under any act whether it’s Code of Civil Procedure or Code of Criminal Procedure.
- Language and Content of Judgement– Every judgment is recorded and written in the local language of the Court prescribed by the State Government. Point of determination should also be considered while making the final verdict. It should clearly include the important evidence, details relating to the offence committed by the accused person, laws under which the act falls, etc. which helps to conclude the trial and judgment. If there are any uncertainties between the two parts of the same section for the offence, then the court should be specific according to them and shall pass the judgment. If the punishment is death penalty or life imprisonment, the court is duty bound to furnish the reason for it.
In Ram Bali vs. the State of U.P., (2004) 6 SCC 533, it was observed that language and content must also be self-contained and it must reflect that the court has applied evidence and facts while forming the judgment.
In Niranjan vs. State, 1978 CriLJ 636, it was observed that if the judgment is not signed during the pronouncement process, the delivered judgment will be considered irrelevant and void in nature.
- Judgement of Metropolitan Magistrate– Instead of recording the final judgement, the metropolitan magistrate must record the name of the complainant, the serial number of the case, date of commission of committing the offence, name and address of the accused person, information regarding examination process, if any plea is requested by the accused and the date of the final decision or judgment.
Order for notifying the address of previously convicted offender– If an order given by the judicial officer is appealed and there it is set aside then it will be declared as Void and will not be applicable on a future judgment.
- Order to Pay Compensation– When a court imposes a sentence or a fine, then while passing the judgment, the court can order to recover the whole or partial amount by calculating the whole expenses incurred in the prosecution process.
When a person faces losses or injuries because of the offence committed, then under the civil court he can recover the Compensation amount.
When a person is convicted for causing death or abetting another person to commit the same act, he will be liable to pay compensation under “Fatal Accident Act, 1855” to the family of the person who died.
When any person is convicted for causing theft, misappropriation, cheating or breach of trust or stealing property, he will be liable to pay the compensation amount to the bonafide purchaser of that property and the property possession is restored to the entitled person.
If a fine is imposed in a case which is subject to appeal then the payment should not be done until the period of appealing is over. If appealed, then the person must wait until the appeal decision is made.
If there is no fine being imposed in the sentence, the court can separately order the defendant to compensate for the losses or injuries incurred.
The power to opt for revision under this section is with the Appellate and The High Court. While awarding the compensation, it should be seen that in any subsequent civil suit of the same matter the amount is paid or recovered as compensation.
- Victim Compensation Act– In every State, coordination and consultation with the Central government scheme should be made to provide funding to the suffered person and their families. Facilities of rehabilitation must also be provided.
Whenever an order is made by the court, the quantum of amount for compensation will be decided by the District and State Legal Service Authority.
During the end of the trial, if the court thinks that the amount is not enough for rehabilitation facilities, the court can make recommendations for compensation. When the victim is identified but the accused person is not still found and no trial is taken place, the victim or his family members can write an application to the District and State legal Authority for granting the compensation amount. After completing the inquiry process within 2 months, the amount of compensation can be granted. Immediate free of cost first aid and medical facilities should be provided to the victim by the District or State Legal Authority by the order of a police officer not below the rank of an officer in charge.
- Compensation payable by the State Government– Section 357A shall be in addition to the payment of fine to the victim under Section 326A, 376AB, Section 376D, 376DA, 376DB of the Indian Penal Code.
- Treatment of Victim– All hospitals whether private or public, should provide medical and first aid facilities to the victim who falls under Section 326A, 376, 376A, 376B, 376C, 376D, 376DA, 376DB and 376DE of the IPC and should inform the police about the incident as soon as possible.
- Compensation to the person for groundless arrested– If any person who is arrested without any reasonable grounds and the magistrate gives a decision that there is not sufficient ground for arrest then he will receive compensation amount from the person who causes the arrest for loss of time and money. Compensation amount should not exceed Rs. 1000/- and if the number of arrested persons is more than one, the magistrate will award each of them personally the compensation amount but it should not exceed Rs. 1000/-
All such amount can be recovered under fine and if a person fails to pay the specified amount then he will be sent to imprisonment for not more than 30 days period.
- Order to pay Compensation in Non cognizable offence– Whenever any non-cognizable offence has been committed, the court can order the accused person to pay the amount of fine imposed on him for committing the offence and addition to it the amount incurred in prosecution process to the aggrieved person like the travelling expenses, court fees and fees of witness and leaders etc. He will suffer imprisonment for not more than 30 days for not paying the amount.
Power of revision is with the Appellate Court, High Court or Court of Session.
- Order to release the Accused person on Probation or Admonition– Probation is the release of an offender from detention, due to good behaviour under the supervision of the officer. Admonition is giving a warning to the person who has committed the act for the very first and in the heat of a moment.
Any person who is below the age of 21 years is convicted for the offence and punishable with fine or imprisonment for a term of 7 years or less, any woman convicted for the offence resulting in imprisonment for life or death penalty and no previous conviction is shown against him or her, and if it appears to the court he is convicted for the offence than by seeing all the character, circumstance in which the offence was committed he will be released on Probation of good conduct, and court will direct him to enter into bond with or without the surety to appear before the court and receive the punishment whenever he is called.
If a first time offender is convicted by a Second class magistrate, and it is beyond his/her power to deal with the case, then he/she will give his/her opinion regarding that particular case and pass on the case along with opinion to a First class magistrate who will deal with the case.
If the Second class magistrate thinks that a particular punishment should be passed under this Act if he would have deal with the case then such suggestion can be made and along with the evidence and if he think at any stage that such inquiry needs to be done and evidence should be taken when he proceeds with the inquiry process.
If any person has committed the offence of theft, misappropriation or dishonesty, he will be liable to pay fine or be imprisoned for not more than 2 years. No other previous conviction is proved and another necessary element will be seen and he will be released on Admonition.
Power to revision is with Appellate or High Court. Further appeal can be made under the High Court or Court of Session and revision and power to set aside the order.
Before releasing any offender the court needs to satisfy that the offender or his surety has a fixed place for habitation or working in a place for which the court ask or whether the offender is likely to live during that period for the compliance with the conditions. When the court is satisfied that offender has failed to abide by the conditions of his recognizance in the case when the court has convicted the offender or deals with the offender in regard office original offence; it may issue a warrant for this apprehension. An offender against whom the warrant of apprehension has been issued shall be brought before the court which had issued a warrant; the court may either remand him in custody until the case is heard or admit him to bail with sufficient surety on a condition of his appearance for sentence and such court may pass a sentence after hearing a case.
The provision of this Section does not affect the provision of:
- Probation of Offenders Act
- Children Act
- Any other law which is for the treatment, rehabilitation or training for an offender
- Special reasons need to be recorded in special cases– When the Court has dealt with a special case like an accused person under Section 360 or under the Probation of offender act, 1958 or a young offender under Children Act, 1960 for the purpose of treatment, rehabilitation or training facility to enhance the behaviour of offender, it shall also be recorded with the judgment in the Special reasons.
- The Court cannot alter its judgment– Once the judgment is pronounced it cannot be changed or altered. Under clerical or arithmetical error, the alteration can be done.
- Copy of judgment needs to be given to every party– A copy of the judgment shall be given free of cost immediately after the pronouncement of judgment. On the application of the accused person, a certified copy of the judgment will be given to him in whichever language he requested to without any delay.
- When Judgement is to be translated– The original judgment shall be filed with the records and if the original judgment is different from what the court or the accused is requires, then it needs to be translated and shall be added to the record.
- Court of Session needs to send the copy of findings and sentence to District Magistrate– In a case where the case is tried by the Court of Session or Chief Judicial Magistrate, copies of findings or sentence shall be forwarded to the District Magistrate who has a deal with the trial at a local jurisdiction.