Legal provisions regarding magistrates authorized to conduct summary trials under section 260 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973.
According to Section 260(1) of the Code, notwithstanding anything contained in the Code of Criminal Procedure:
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a) Any Chief Judicial Magistrate;
(b) Any Metropolitan Magistrate;
(c) Any Magistrate of the first class specially empowered in this behalf by the High Court, may try in a summary way any of the offences specified as (i) to (ix) in Section 260(1) of the Code (given below).
Further, as per Section 261 of the Code, the High Court may confer on any Magistrate invested with the powers of a Magistrate of the second class power to try summarily any offence which is punishable only with fine, or with imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months with or without fine, and any abatement of or attempt to commit any such offence.
According to Section 461(m) of the Code, if any Magistrate not empowered to try in a summary manner tries an offence summarily, the trial shall be void.
Sub-section (2) of Section 260 of the Code provides that when, in the course of a summary trial, it appears to the Magistrate, that the nature of the case is such that it is undesirable to try it summarily, the Magistrate shall recall any witness who may have been examined and proceed to re-hear the case in a manner provided by the .Code of Criminal Procedure.
Offences triable summarily:
As per Section 260(1) of the Code, the following are the offences triable summarily:
(i) Offences not punishable with death, imprisonment for life or imprisonment for a term exceeding two years;
(ii) Theft, under Section 379, Section 380 or Section 381 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860, where the value of the property stolen does not exceed two thousand rupees;
(iii) Receiving or retaining stolen property, under Section 411 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860, where the value of such property does not exceed two thousand rupees;
(iv) Assisting in the concealment or disposal of stolen property, under Section 414 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860, where the value of such property does not exceed two thousand rupees;
(v) Offences under Sections 454 and 456 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860;
(vi) Insult with intent to provoke a breach of the peace, under Section 504, and criminal intimidation, punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to two years, or with fine, or with both under Section 506 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860;
(vii) Abetment of any of the foregoing offences;
(viii) An attempt to commit any of the foregoing offences, when such attempt is an offence;
(ix) any offence constituted by an act in respect of which a complaint may be made under Section 20 of the Cattle Trespass Act, 1871.