However, where an enactment provides for procedure regulating the manner or place of investigation, inquiry or trial, the provisions of that enactment shall prevail over the Code of Criminal Procedure unless there is a specific provision to the contrary. Where no special or different procedure is provided by the special Act, the procedure provided by the Criminal Procedure Code, shall be followed.
The Supreme Court, in C.B.I, v. State of Rajasthan, has observed that Section 5 of Cr.P.C. will not be applicable in respect of an offence committed under the Foreign Exchange Regulation Act, 1973 because of the fact that it is a special law which contains provisions for investigation, enquiry, search, seizure, trial and imposition of sentence for offences committed under the Act.
Similarly, the special procedure prescribed for investigation and trial of offences committed by delinquent children under the Juvenile Justice (Care & Protection of Children) Act, 2000 will prevail over the procedure prescribed by the Code of Criminal Procedure under Section 27 of the Code because the latter is only an enabling provision.
In Narcotics Control Bureau v. Kishan Lai the Apex Court ruled that Section 37 of the NDPS Act, 1985 dealing with grant of bail, being a special enactment, the general provision of Section 439 of Cr.P.C. has to be read subject to Section 37 in view of the provision contained in Section 4 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.
The Supreme Court, in Union of India v. Sadha Singh, inter-alia, observed that the provision relating to restriction on powers of remission or commutation of sentence in certain cases as contained in Section 433-A of the Cr.P.C. will be applicable to those sentenced under the Army Act because there is no specific contrary provision in the Act in this regard.
Section 4 of the Code specifically provides that the Code having come into force on April 1, 1974, all offences shall be investigated, inquired into, tried and otherwise dealt with according to the provisions of the Code. As a result of this, excepting those cases which have been enumerated in Section 484, the Code shall apply to all investigations inquiries and trials from the day of its commencement. However, the Code shall not apply to proceedings commenced before the enforcement of the Act.
The Code of Criminal Procedure is an exhaustive Code consisting of 484 Sections and two Schedules. However, if the Supreme Court or any High Court finds that there is no specific provision in the Code to meet the exigencies of any situation, the Court may make use of its inherent power to mould the procedure to suit the situation and, pass such orders as may be necessary to meet the ends of justice.
The Supreme Court has, however, ruled in A.S. Gaurava v. S.N. Tliakur that subordinate Courts do not have any inherent power. Section 482 of the Code further makes it clear that inherent power vests in the High Court.