Section 341 of Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (Cr.P.C.) – Explained!

This section provides a right of appeal against the order passed by the first Court regarding making a complaint or refusing to make a complaint under preceding Section 340. The appellate Court may withdraw the complaint or may itself make a complaint. There is no provision for a second appeal to the High Court against an order passed in appeal under this section.

The right of appeal under this section is against making a complaint and not against the finding of the preliminary inquiry which is incidental to it. Therefore, until a complaint is made under Section 340, the order for prosecution is incomplete and therefore, no right of appeal to the party against whom such an order is made. The right of appeal arises only on a complaint being made.

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Where the lower Court refuses to make a complaint, it is only a person on whose application the Court refused to make a complaint; can appeal.

In reversing the order of the Court below, the Appellate Court must give reasons as to why it considers that the discretion has not been properly exercised by the lower Court.

The period of limitation for the purpose of an appeal under this section begins from the date on which complaint is signed and not from the date on which it is received by the Magistrate, who is to take action thereon.

An order passed by the Additional District Judge under Section 340, Cr. P.C., sitting in matrimonial proceedings could be challenged by filing appeal under Section 341 before the High Court Bench taking matrimonial appeals.

An appeal under this section is subject to the provisions applicable to criminal appeal as laid down in Section 382 of the Code.


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