A five-judge Constitution Bench headed by Chief Justice P. Sathasivam said that the trial court has powers to summon a person as an accused, despite his name being not mentioned by the investigators in the FIR and charge sheet.
The bench clarified that Section 319 of Criminal Procedure Code empowers the trial court to proceed against a person who appears to be guilty of offence but not named in the FIR or charge sheet.
The judgement could have implications in some cases arising out of the 2G scam in which the trial judge had summoned as accused some corporate honchos even though they were not named by CBI in the FIR and charge sheet.
The businessmen have approached the Supreme Court against the trial court’s summoning order. The apex court is yet to pronounce its verdict in the case.