An accused cannot appoint a power of attorney to represent him in criminal proceedings, according to the Punjab and Haryana High Court. The approach would not only encourage the accused to seek such permits in order to avoid having to appear in person before the trial or any other Court, but it would also place an additional load on the Courts.
Justice Manoj Bajaj further found that it might cause significant delays in the completion of criminal procedures, undermining the goal and purpose of the penal legislation.
Justice Bajaj's decision came in response to a proclaimed offender's appeal of orders issued by the trial court issuing non-bailable warrants to guarantee his presence before designating him a proclaimed offender in a FIR filed in April 2010 at the Civil Lines police station in Amritsar for cheating.
The petitioner moved overseas throughout the pendency of the case, according to Justice Bajaj, and the trial court's efforts to ensure his attendance were unsuccessful. He first asked the High Court to dismiss the FIR, arguing that continuing the case against him would be a waste of the Court's time because his co-accused had been acquitted. However, the request was turned down.