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[Landmark Judgement] Chief Enforcement Officer v/s Videocon International Ltd. (2008)

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Landmark Judgment Law Insider (1)

Published on – 20 November 2022 at 19:55 IST

Court – Supreme Court of India

Citation – Chief Enforcement Officer v/s Videocon International Ltd. (2008) 2 SCC 492

Hon’ble Supreme Court of India has held that expression “Cognizance” has not been defined in the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973. It is held that means “Become Aware Of” and when used with reference to a court or a Judge, it connotes “To Take Notice Of Judicially”.

It indicates the point when a court or a Magistrate takes judicial notice of an offence with a view to initiating proceedings in respect of such offence said to have been committed by someone.

Para – 20

“Taking cognizance” does not involve any formal action of any kind. It occurs as soon as a Magistrate applies his mind to the suspected commission of an offence. Cognizance is taken prior to commencement of criminal proceedings. Taking of cognizance is thus a sine qua non or condition precedent for holding a valid trial.”

“Cognizance is taken of an offence and not of an offender. Whether or not a Magistrate has taken cognizance of an offence depends on the facts and circumstances of each case and no rule of universal application can be laid down as to when a Magistrate can be said to have taken cognizance.”

Drafted By Abhijit Mishra

Key Words – Cognizance, Judicial Notice, Precedent, Universal Application.