(d) A is charged under S. 184 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860, with intentionally obstructing a sale of property offered for sale by the lawful authority of a public servant. The charge should be in those words.
In one case, where the accused was charged only with the offence of kidnapping, and yet, the Sessions Judge left it to the jury to convict the accused of abduction also, it was held that the notice of the charge of kidnapping is not a fair, proper or sufficient notice of a charge of abduction, and the conviction was, therefore, set aside. (Isu Sk.,—31 C.W.N. 171)
The Orissa High Court has observed that if a charge of adultery is sufficiently definite as regards the place of occurrence and also specifies a period, the mere omission to give each date does not cause any prejudice. (Philips,—A.I.R. 1935 Cr. 506)
In a charge of adultery, it may often be impossible to specify the particular date or dates on which the sexual intercourse took place. Therefore, in such cases, it would be sufficient to specify two dates between which the offence is alleged to have been committed. (Bhola, — 51 Cal. 488)
The Calcutta High Court has held that in a case of defamation under S. 500 of the I.P.C., the alleged defamatory statements on which the prosecution relies, should be separately and precisely mentioned in the charge, so that the accused may know exactly what case he has to meet. (Ballavdas,—A.I.R. 1943 Cal. 473)
So also, in a charge of falsification of accounts, the particular accounts which are alleged to have been falsified should be mentioned, and a charge containing a vague and general allegation of falsification would be irregular. (Ramdit Lai,—38 Cr. L.J. 97)
S. 212 then provides that the charge must contain such particulars as to the time and place of the alleged offence, and the person, if any, against whom, or the thing if any, in respect of which, the offence was committed, as are reasonably sufficient to give to the accused notice of the matter with which he is charged.
Moreover, if the accused is charged with criminal breach of trust or dishonest misappropriation of money or other movable property, it would be sufficient to specify the gross sum involved or, as the case may be, describe the movable property in respect of which the offence is alleged to have been committed, and the dates between which such offence is alleged to have been committed, without specifying the particular items or the exact dates. However, when this is done, the span of time included between the first and the last of such days should not exceed one year.
The object of this section is to ensure that the accused has the fullest possible particulars of the accusation made against him. Thus, a charge for house-breaking and theft would be bad on account of vagueness, if it does not specify the articles stolen, or the name of the person whose house was broken into, or omits to mention the place where the offence was committed.
S. 213 lays down that if the nature of the case is such that the particulars mentioned in Ss. 211 and 212 (discussed above) do not give to the accused sufficient notice of the matter with which he is charged, the charge must also mention such particulars of the manner in which the alleged offence was committed as would be sufficient for that purpose.