Author : Sweta Upadhyay


This article is about the examination of accused person under section 313 of the Code of Criminal Procedure 1973. The core believe of the Indian  Judicial system is  “It is best that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer”. To fulfil this fundamental requirements of Natural Justice section 313 play an important role. This article further discuss about the procedure of section 313 under Code Of Criminal Procedure 1973.



Section 313 of Criminal Procedure Code, 1973 envisages power of the court to seem at the accused to elucidate evidence adduced against him. We all familiar with the basic principle of natural justice Audi ultra partum which suggests nobody should be condemned un heard. to satisfy the necessity of the principles of natural justice because it requires that an accused could even be given an opportunity to heard. Section 313 provides the prospect to be heard before the court.


The examination of the accused isn’t a mere formality, the questions put to the accused and answers given by him, have great use.

The scope of section 313 of the Criminal Procedure Code 1973  is wide and is not a mere formality. The thing of recording the statement of the accused under section 313, Criminal Procedure Code 1973 is to put all incriminating evidence to the accused so on provide him an opportunity to elucidate such incriminating circumstances appearing against him within the evidence of the prosecution. it’s –

1.  within the case , Sanatan Naskar & Another v. State of West Bengal;[1] AIR 2010 SC 3507: to work out an instantaneous dialogue between the court and thus the accused and to put every important incriminating piece of evidence to the accused and grant him an opportunity to answer and explain them.

2. also to see the veracity of the prosecution case.

The Court is required in every trial to conduct examination of accused under Section-313 Criminal Procedure Code 1973  after taking of the prosecution evidence. An analysis of Section 313 discloses the power of court to seem at the accused at 2 stages. according to the section the Hon’ble trial court:

i.   May, at any stage, examine the accused for the aim of enabling him personally to elucidate any circumstances appearing within the evidence against him. (Sec.313(1) (a) Criminal Procedure Code 1973)

ii.  Shall, after the witnesses for the prosecution are examined, examine the accused for the aim of enabling him personally to elucidate any circumstances appearing within the evidence against him. (Sec.313 (1) (b) of Criminal Procedure Code 1973).


As per section 313 of Criminal Procedure Code 1973., accused is examined any stage of proceedings and shall after completion of evidence of prosecution. to know procedure of examination of accused it’s pertinent to read 313 of cr.p.c.

  1. On plain reading of section 313 of Criminal Procedure Code 1973  the first part gives discretion to court to question accused at any stage of enquiry without previous warning where because the second part is mandatory. The use of the word “may” in clause (a) shows that a discretion is vested within the Court. However, clause (b) uses the word “shall”, and makes the questioning mandatory. When an accused is being examined as above, no oath is to be administered to him. Moreover, he doesn’t render himself liable by refusing to answer such questions or by giving false answers to such provisions. The answers which are given by the accused in such examination could even be taken into consideration and put conspicuous , for or against him therein or the opposite inquiry or trial for the opposite offence which such answers may tend to means that he has committed.
  2. While examining the accused court possesses to require into consideration that the questions should be supported the evidence adduced by prosecution witnesses that to incriminating evidence found from prosecution evidence. The questions should be formulated in clear, logical and understandable leaving no ambiguity in questioning accused. While examining accused courts possesses to require into consideration socio economic and academic qualification of accused and capacity of him to understand questions posed to him. Court possesses to require acute care while examining rustic and illiterate accused. The accused if he is not a intelligent person with a sharp memory won’t even remember all the circumstances put to him while giving his explanation. This may affinity leads to miscarriage of justice. If vague questions are put to the accused he won’t have opportunity to elucidate promptly and effectually. Evidence of each witness and incriminating evidence found there on should be asked individually but not during a proper way questioning all the accused at only one occasion. Questioning of all accused at a time about incriminating evidence found form prosecution isn’t proper, as role and participation each accused may different according to the facts and circumstances of each case. So that, it is often desirable to ask each accused separately about incriminating evidence found against him during a case.

For example, if a bit of writing is recovered from the house of the accused which may are used for a criminal offense (eg. murder weapon), then the Court can ask the accused to elucidate under what circumstances was that specific article found within the possession of the accused.

By questioning the accused, the Court are often apprised of the relevant facts which may be important to form a choice the guilt of the accused. The Hon’ble Supreme Court of India within the case of Subhash Chand v. State of Rajasthan, (2002) 1 SCC 702[2] has observed with regard to Section 313 Cr.P.C. that:

“…The purpose of asking questions during examination under Section 313 CrPC is to afford the accused personally an opportunity of explaining any incriminating circumstance so appearing conspicuous  against him. The accused may or won’t avail the prospect for offering his explanation…”

Further, the Hon’ble Supreme Court has observed within the case of Avtar Singh v. State of Punjab, (2002) 7 SCC 419[3], that, “The object of examination under Section 313, it’s documented, is to afford an opportunity to the accused to elucidate the circumstances appearing within the evidence against him.”


In Munish Mubar v. State of Haryana; AIR 2013 SC 912,[4] it had been obligatory for the court to present all incriminating material associated with the accused, even in cases of circumstantial evidence so on 2 whether the chain of circumstances has been completed whilst listening of the rationale of the accused against the evidence presented within the court.

It was further reiterated in Mushir Khan v. State of Madhya Pradesh; AIR 2010 SC 762[5]. In the Munish Mubar Case (Supra), the court held that

“circumstantial evidence could also be an in depth companion of actual matrix, creating a fine network through which can be no escape for the accused, primarily, because such facts when taken as a whole, don’t permit us to arrive the opposite inference but one, indicating the guilt of accused.”


Non examination of accused under section 313 of Cr.P.C doesn’t vitiate the entire proceedings or case of prosecution. Accused can observe of the same even at appellate stage. it isn’t sole base for eviction unless accused shown miscarriage of justice. in State (Delhi Administration) v. Dharampal; AIR 2001 SC 2924 [6]wherein the Court has held as under:

“Thus it’s to be seen that where an omission, to bring the attention of the accused to an inculpatory material has occurred that does not ipso facto vitiate the proceedings. The accused must show that failure of justice was occasioned by such omission. Further, within the event of an inculpatory material not having been put to the accused, the appellate court can always observe that lapse by calling upon the counsel for the accused to means what explanation the accused has as regards the circumstances established against the accused but not put to him…

In Gyan Chand et al. v. State of Haryana; AIR 2013 SC 3395,[7] Plea to non-compliance of the provisions of section 313, Cr.P.C. was taken for the first time before the Supreme Court. But there was no material showing on what prejudice has been caused to the accused persons, if facts of conscious possession wasn’t put to them. Thus the court held that the trial wasn’t vitiated for non compliance of the provisions of section 313, Cr..P.C.Mere defective/improper examination under section 313, Cr.P.C. isn’t any ground for setting aside the conviction of the accused, unless it’s resulted in prejudice to the accused.

Unless the examination under section 313, Cr.P.C. is completed during a perverse way, there cannot be any prejudice to the accused. (SC Bahri v. State of Bihar; AIR 1994 SC 2420)(Shobhit Chamar v. State of Bihar; AIR 1998 SC 1693).[8]


It’s settled law that it’s optional in each case to seem at the accused under above section. If there aren’t any circumstances appearing against the accused in evidence, then the court shouldn’t put any inquiries to accused. If answers are elicited on improper and wrong questions, they can not be taken into consideration. When the accused had pleaded guilty to the charge, then the question of examination doesn’t arise. within an equivalent way when there’s an admission made by the accused himself, then it isn’t necessary to put that allegation to the accused in examination. it isn’t intent of the legislature that to elicit explanation from accused during which there is no evidence.


Therefore, altogether inquiries and trials Section 313 Cr.P.C. purpose is to supply an opportunity to the accused to elucidate the incriminating material against him conspicuous  tendered by prosecution. Hence, examination of accused under section 313 Cr.P.c. isn’t mere formality. The Supreme Court clarified the legal position of section 313 Cr.P.C.

In Parsuram Pandey v. State of Bihar [9]that “section 313, Criminal Procedure Code 1973. is imperative to enable an accused to elucidate away any incriminating circumstances proved by the prosecution.”

And in Asraf Ali v. State of Assam[10] “it is supposed to profit the accused and by way of its corollary, it benefits the court also in reaching the last word conclusion and its intention isn’t to nail the accused but to suits the foremost salutary and fundamentals of natural Justice.


  1. https://tilakmarg.com/notes/examination-of-an-accused-under-section-313-crpc/
  2. https://blog.ipleaders.in/scope-and-significance-of-examination-of-accused-under-section-313-crpc/
  3. https://www.legalbites.in/examination-of-accused-by-the-magistrate-under-section-313/
  4. http://www.legalservicesindia.com/law/article/1099/5/-Defence-of-The-Accused-U-s-313-CrPC;-Non-Consideration-Can-Vitiate-Conviction

[1] AIR 2010, SC 3507.

[2] (2002) 1 SCC 702.

[3] ( 2002) 7 SCC 419.

[4] AIR 2013 SC 912.

[5] AIR 2010 SC 762.

[6] AIR 2001 SC 2924.

[7] AIR 2013 SC 3395.

[8] ( AIR 1994 SC 2420)( AIR 1998 SC 1693).

[9] 2004) 13 SCC 18.

[10] 2008) 16 SCC 328.