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News : Delhi Court Criticizes Police for Summoning Witnesses via WhatsApp, Calls for Adherence to Legal Procedures.

Delhi Court Rebukes Police for Summons via WhatsApp

  • A Delhi court has criticized the police for serving summons through the messaging app WhatsApp, highlighting concerns about proper legal procedures.
  • The court issued a notice to the Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP) of the Western District, instructing appropriate action to be taken regarding this matter.


  • Additional District Judge Hemraj was presiding over a murder case filed at the Punjabi Bagh police station and was in the process of collecting evidence.
  • One of the prosecution witnesses was absent and did not respond to repeated calls, as noted by the court.

Standing Order and Lack of Circular:-

  • In February of the previous year, the Delhi Police Commissioner issued a standing order for summoning witnesses, according to the judge.
  • However, the court pointed out that it received a letter from the DCP of the Western District stating that there is no circular from the Delhi Police allowing summons to be sent via WhatsApp.

Court’s Observations:-

  • The judge expressed concern, stating that in many cases, witnesses are being sent summons solely through WhatsApp by police officers.
  • The judge emphasized that police officers should make at least three attempts to personally serve the summons to witnesses.

Action Directed Towards DCP:-

  • The court highlighted that the concerned head constable made no effort to serve the summons during the hearing,
  • while the Inspector’s report displayed negligence.
  • Consequently, the court directed the DCP of the Western District to take appropriate action in response to this issue.

Understanding the Summons Rule:-

  • The service of summons is governed by Section 62 of the Criminal Procedure Code, which specifies the rules for its delivery.
  • Summons should ideally be served by a police officer or any other public servant designated by the court issuing the summons, as per the rules established by the State Government.
  • If possible, the summons should be personally delivered to the accused, along with a copy of the summons.
  • The person summoned is required to sign a receipt on the back of the duplicate copy of the summons, upon the request of the serving officer.

Importance of Personal Service:-

  • It should be noted that the accused’s residence cannot be entered for the purpose of summons service, and the summons cannot be served merely by ordering the accused.
  • Personal service is considered essential to ensure proper legal procedure.
  • This incident has brought attention to the need for adherence to established protocols in serving legal summonses and ensuring that witnesses receive proper notification in accordance with the law.

Section 62 of the Criminal Procedure Code,

CRPC कलम 62

Section 62 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) pertains to the service of summonses. It outlines the procedure and requirements for serving summonses to individuals involved in legal proceedings. Here is a description of the key provisions of Section 62:

  1. Method of Service: Every summons is to be served by a police officer or, subject to the rules prescribed by the State Government, by an officer of the court or another public servant. This ensures that summonses are delivered by authorized personnel.

  2. Personal Service: If practicable, the summons should be served personally on the person summoned. This means that the summons should be directly handed over or tendered to the individual to ensure that it reaches them personally.

  3. Duplicate Summons: The person served with the summons is required to receive one of the duplicates of the summons. The serving officer should deliver a copy of the summons to the individual being summoned.

  4. Receipt of Summons: If requested by the serving officer, the person named in the summons must sign a receipt on the back of the duplicate copy of the summons. This receipt serves as proof that the summons was received by the person it was intended for.

These provisions underline the importance of proper and lawful service of summonses. The aim is to ensure that summonses reach the intended individuals and that there is evidence of their receipt. Personal service helps ensure effective communication and compliance with legal proceedings.

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