A.H. Khan, J.
1. The short question to he considered in this revision is whether the presence of the accused, whose personal attendance has been excused, is necessary for explaining to him the charge under Section 251 (A) of the Criminal Procedure Code.
2. In the instant case, the Police filed a Challan against Mst. Kanchan Bai under Section 324 I. P. C. She was exempted from personal attendance. At the time of framing the charge, it was suggested to the Court that the charge should be read over and explained to her personally and that she should be called in the Court for that purpose. The Court has for that reason ordered Mst. Kanchan Bai to appear in the Court. It seems that the Court thinks that the charge cannot be explained to the counsel of the accused, who has been permitted to appear on her behalf.
3. I think that if the personal attendance of a person has been dispensed with and he is permitted to appear by his pleader, then such appearance involves the performance of all acts which the accused is supposed to do during the course of that trial. In this view of the matter, a pleader can answer all questions put to the accused under Section 342 Cr. P. C. and the accused can also plead guilty and not guilty through his counsel.
4. In this case, it does not appear under what section the trial Court has dispensed with the personal attendance of the accused. It is not under Section 205 of the Cr. P. C. because the summonses were not issued in the first instance. Evidently it is an order under the new provision of Section 540 (A) of the Cr. P. Code. Unless the offence is a heinous one and the charge is a grave one, I think the discretion in the matter of dispensing with personal attendance of women accused should be liberally exercised by the subordinate courts.
5. In support of the view, I have taken, I would refer to Emperor v. Jamal Khatun, 19 Ind Cas 544 (Sind), in which the question of excusing the attendance of the accused under Section 205 of the Cr. P. C. was considered. It was held that where the personal attendance of the accused was dispensed with, his pleader can enter a plea of guilty or not guilty and can also be put question under Section 342 of the Cr. P. C. What applies to the exemption of an accused from personal attendance in a summons case, may as wellapply to an accused who is being tried in a warrant case. This of course does not imply that if at any subsequent stage of the proceedings, the trial courtthinks that the personal attendance of the accused is otherwise necessary, it cannot direct the accused to be present in the Court.
6. For reasons stated above, I would allow the revision and direct the trial Court to explain the charge to the counsel instead of the accused whose personal attendance has been dispensed with by him. It would be open to the counsel to plead guilty or not guilty. Should the counsel say that he is unable to plead either, then of course the accused should becalled to the Court.