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Section 354 BNSS to Section 358 BNSS| Section 355 BNSS| Section 356 BNSS| Section 357 BNSS

Updated: Feb 7

Section 354 BNSS| Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha Sanhita (BNSS):

No influence to be used to induce disclosure.

Except as provided in sections 343 and 344, no influence, by means of any promise or threat or otherwise, shall be used to an accused person to induce him to disclose or withhold any matter within his knowledge.

Section 355 BNSS| Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha Sanhita (BNSS):

Provision for inquiries and trial being held in the absence of accused in certain cases.

(1) At any stage of an inquiry or trial under this Sanhita, if the Judge or Magistrate is satisfied, for reasons to be recorded, that the personal attendance of the accused before the Court is not necessary in the interests of justice, or that the accused persistently disturbs the proceedings in Court, the Judge or Magistrate may, if the accused is represented by an advocate, dispense with his attendance and proceed with such inquiry or trial in his absence, and may, at any subsequent stage of the proceedings, direct the personal attendance of such accused.

(2) If the accused in any such case is not represented by an advocate, or if the Judge or Magistrate considers his personal attendance necessary, he may, if he thinks fit and for reasons to be recorded by him, either adjourn such inquiry or trial, or order that the case of such accused be taken up or tried separately.

Explanation.—For the purpose of this section, personal attendance of the accused includes attendance through audio video electronic means.

Section 356 BNSS| Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha Sanhita (BNSS):

Inquiry trial or judgment in absentia of proclaimed offender.

(1) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Sanhita or in any other law for the time being in force, when a person declared as a proclaimed offender, whether or not charged jointly, has absconded to evade trial and there is no immediate prospect of arresting him, it shall be deemed to operate as a waiver of the right of such person to be present and tried in person, and the Court shall, after recording reasons in writing, in the interest of justice, proceed with the trial in the like manner and with like effect as if he was present, under this Sanhita and pronounce the judgment:

Provided that the Court shall not commence the trial unless a period of ninety days has lapsed from the date of framing of the charge.

(2) The Court shall ensure that the following procedure has been complied with before proceeding under sub-section (1) namely:—

(i) issuance of execution of two consecutive warrants of arrest within the interval of atleast thirty days;

(ii) publish in a national or local daily newspaper circulating in the place of his last known address of residence, requiring the proclaimed offender to appear before the Court for trial and informing him that in case he fails to appear within thirty days from the date of such publication, the trial shall commence in his absence;

(iii) inform his relative or friend, if any, about the commencement of the trial;


(iv) affix information about the commencement of the trial on some conspicuous part of the house or homestead in which such person ordinarily resides and display in the police station of the district of his last known address of residence.

(3) Where the proclaimed offender is not represented by any advocate, he shall be provided with an advocate for his defence at the expense of the State.

(4) Where the Court, competent to try the case or commit for trial, has examined any witnesses for prosecution and recorded their depositions, such depositions shall be given in evidence against such proclaimed offender on the inquiry into, or in trial for, the offence with which he is charged:

Provided that if the proclaimed offender is arrested and produced or appears before the Court during such trial, the Court may, in the interest of justice, allow him to examine any evidence which may have been taken in his absence.

(5) Where a trial is related to a person under this section, the deposition and examination of the witness, may, as far as practicable, be recorded by audio-video electronic means preferably mobile phone and such recording shall be kept in such manner as the Court may direct.

(6) In prosecution for offences under this Sanhita, voluntary absence of accused after the trial has commenced under sub-section (1) shall not prevent continuing the trial including the pronouncement of the judgment even if he is arrested and produced or appears

at the conclusion of such trial.

(7) No appeal shall lie against the judgment under this section unless the proclaimed offender presents himself before the Court of appeal:

Provided that no appeal against conviction shall lie after the expiry of three years from the date of the judgment.

(8) The State may, by notification, extend the provisions of this section to any absconder mentioned in sub-section (1) of section 84 of this Sanhita.

Section 357 BNSS| Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha Sanhita (BNSS):

Procedure where accused does not understand proceedings.

If the accused, though not a person with unsound mind, cannot be made to understand the proceedings, the Court may proceed with the inquiry or trial; and, in the case of a Court other than a High Court, if such proceedings result in a conviction, the proceedings shall be forwarded to the High Court with a report of the circumstances of the case, and the High Court shall pass thereon such order as it thinks fit.

Section 358 BNSS| Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha Sanhita (BNSS):

Power to proceed against other persons appearing to be guilty of offence.

(1) Where, in the course of any inquiry into, or trial of, an offence, it appears from the evidence that any person not being the accused has committed any offence for which such person could be tried together with the accused, the Court may proceed against such person for the offence which he appears to have committed.

(2) Where such person is not attending the Court, he may be arrested or summoned,

as the circumstances of the case may require, for the purpose aforesaid.

(3) Any person attending the Court, although not under arrest or upon a summons, may be detained by such Court for the purpose of the inquiry into, or trial of, the offence which he appears to have committed.

(4) Where the Court proceeds against any person under sub-section (1), then—

(a) the proceedings in respect of such person shall be commenced afresh, and the witnesses re-heard;

(b) subject to the provisions of clause (a), the case may proceed as if such person had been an accused person when the Court took cognizance of the offence upon which the inquiry or trial was commenced.

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