Definition of inquiry investigation and trial

Definition of inquiry investigation and trial


The word inquiry has been defined under section 2(g) of criminal procedure code.

According to section 2(g) of the code. Inquiry means every inquiry, other than a trial conducted under the code of criminal procedure by a Magistrate or Court.


The term investigation defined under section 2(h) of the code has a very wide connotation. It includes understand the detention for the purpose of collection of evidence.

Generally, speaking, the following steps in a criminal case may be deemed to be within the purview of the term investigation under the code :-

  1. Proceeding to the spot of crime;
  2. Ascertaining the facts and circumstances of the case;
  3. Discovery and arrest of the suspected offenders:
  4. Collection of evidence, examination of various persons including the accused and recording their statements in writing;
  5. Search of places or seizures of things considered necessary for the purpose of making out a prosecution case;
  6. Filing of a chargesheet under section 173 of the code where material collected is sufficient to make out a prima facie case against the offender or offenders.

From what has been stated above, it is evident that an investigation by Police is neither an inquiry, not a trial under the code. Where a police officer on receiving the first information report and registering a case, visits the scene of occurrence of the crime, inquires for accused and records statements of witnesses, it is simply an investigation proceeding [L.M. Bhatt v. State of Uttar Pradesh, 1973 Cr.L.J, 1797 (A.P.)]


The word trial has not been defined in the criminal procedure code. It generally means a judicial proceeding. Such proceeding is under either in conviction or acquittal.

The privy council in B.R. Lawrence vs Emperor, AIR, 1933 PC 218, the word the trial has been defined. According to it trial is a judicial proceeding, including sentence.