Can compromise be made in criminal cases?
Any criminal case is instituted on the police report or on the application of
the aggrieved party to the Magistrate. An aggrieved person has these two ways to
register a criminal case. Whenever any crime occurs, it is against the state, in
any crime, there is not only a relationship between the victim and the accused,
but the state is with the victim. On the application of the victim, the state
registers the criminal case on its behalf. In a major criminal case, the victim
does not have the right to compromise with the accused.
There are some cases where not only the victim but the rights of other people
are also encroached, so only the victim cannot compromise. This topic is being
discussed in detail in this article.
This is such an initiative in which long trial of cases does not go on, rather
the parties settle the matter in the middle by compromising among themselves.
Normally this happens through Lok Adalats.
There are many benefits of compromise, such as:
- Cases are disposed of quickly,
- Unnecessary money and time are not wasted in litigation and
- There is a sense of mutual affection and harmony among the parties. In
the beginning, the agreement was not given legal form. In course of time, it
was given a legal form. Necessary provision has been made in this regard in
Section 320 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973.
Cases Eligible for compromise
Two types of cases have been mentioned in section 320:
- In the first instance, cases in which compromise can be made without the
leave of the court.
- Second: Such cases in which compromise can be made with the permission
of the court. The cases of the first class are of general nature while the
cases of the second class are of relatively serious nature. The table of
Section 320 of the Code of Criminal Procedure can be seen in this regard.
It is worth mentioning here that the offenses mentioned in section 320 can be
compounded, but not in other cases.
Cases which do not fall within the purview of section 320:
For example, in the case of Section 307 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860,
the accused was released on parole, because:
- are not compoundable, and
- cannot be compounded with the permission of the court. If the compromise
is made in cases other than those falling within the purview of section 320,
it cannot be allowed by the court. In such cases quantum of punishment may
- the case was 20 years old,
- the parties were agriculturists, and
- there was a settlement between the parties.
The Court has allowed compromise in the following cases:
- Section 324 of the Indian Penal Code,
- Section 323 of the Indian Penal Code,
- Section 324 and 325 of the Indian Penal Code case
- case under section 307 of the Indian Penal Code in which the accused was
- case under section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act, etc.
But permission to compromise was not granted in a case of illegal abortion. In
fact, compromise is allowed in cases of general nature in which the parties
reach an agreement and which is negotiable.
Effect of compromise
Effect of compromise will acquit the accused
In one case there was a compromise on behalf of the deceased. Where the person
making the compromise is dead, the compromise may be made on his behalf by his
Affidavit on behalf of a minor
If the person making the affidavit is:
It is noteworthy here:
- a minor, that is, under the age of 18 years, or
- an idiot, or
- a lunatic, by a person competent to contract on his behalf compromise
can be done with the permission of the court.
- compromise can be made at any time before passing the sentence, even at
the time of writing the decision.
- compromise may also be made in appeal.
It is important in this case that only offenses falling within the ambit of
section 320 can be compounded, apart from this, no offense can be compounded.
Now in the case the person will be either convicted or acquitted but the court
will not give its judgment on the basis of the compromise.
Section 320 covers only petty crimes and such crimes which are confined to the
victim only. Like abusing may be a small crime but it is not limited to the
victim only, someone's abusing creates public welfare and it also encroaches on
the rights of other people present there, therefore the offense of section 294
was not compoundable but recently This offense has been made compoundable by the