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Report No. 41

Chapter XLVIII


48.1. Objectives of revision.-

We have come to the end of our detailed study of the Code in the course of which we have made numerous recommendations for its improvement, ranging from verbal changes designed to remove ambiguities and clarifying underlying ideas to substantial changes in procedure with a view to its simplication and the avoidance of delay. The object of the Code is to ensure that an accused person gets a full and fair trial along certain well-established and well-understood lines that accord with our notions of natural justice. It may be said that by laying down detailed rules of procedure for meeting every possible contingency, the Code makes one lose sight of the main objective, but it is obviously not so. As observed by Justice Vivian Bose in the Supreme Court.1

"The Code is emphatic that whatever the irregularity, it is not to be regarded as fatal unless there is prejudice. It is the substance that we must seek. Courts have to administer justice, and justice includes the punishment of guilt just as much as the protection of innocence. Neither can be done if the shadow is mistaken for the substance and the goal is lost in a labyrinth of unsubstantial technicalities. Broad vision is required, a nice balancing of the rights of the State and protection of society in general against protection from harassment to the individual and the risks of unjust conviction."

We have kept these objectives in view while revising the Code.

1. Willie (Willam) Slaney v. State of Madhya Pradesh, (1955) 2 SCR 1140 (1168).

Code of Criminal Procedure, 1898 Back

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