by | Feb 6, 2024


Embedded within the procedural fabric of Indian civil litigation is the indispensable concept of Summons under the Civil Procedure Code (CPC). 

Definition : A summons, in the legal realm, serves as a formal document issued by a court to inaugurate legal proceedings. It functions as an official communication, alerting concerned parties of their obligation to make an appearance before the court. Within the CPC framework, the summons plays a crucial role in ensuring parties are apprised of legal proceedings and are afforded the opportunity to present their case.


The primary objective is to furnish notice to the involved parties, ensuring awareness of the legal proceedings against them. This notice, integral to the principles of natural justice, guarantees every party an opportunity to present their case before the court.

Critical Provisions Shaping Summons under the CPC:

  • Order V of the CPC:
    The issuance and service of summons find their procedural ground primarily in Order V of the CPC. This order delineates rules and procedures governing the issuance of summons, specifying essential details such as the court’s name, the involved parties, the nature of the suit, and the scheduled date and time of the hearing.
  • Section 27 of the CPC:
    Empowering the court to ensure proper service, Section 27 of the CPC outlines diverse methods of service, including personal service, substituted service, and, in exceptional circumstances, publication in newspapers. The court exercises discretion in choosing the most fitting method based on the specifics of the case.
  • Role of Summons across Litigation Stages:

Commencement of the Suit – They are typically issued at the commencement of a civil suit, formally notifying the defendant about the legal action initiated against them.

  1. Interlocutory Proceedings – Summons may be issued during interlocutory proceedings, directing parties to appear for hearings related to specific issues within the case.
  2. Execution Proceedings – In execution proceedings, summons may be utilized to summon parties involved in the enforcement of a court decree.


In summation, the issuance of summons under the CPC stands as a pivotal stride in the legal journey. It ensures that all parties are afforded a fair opportunity to present their case, upholding the tenets of natural justice. A comprehensive comprehension of the rules surrounding summons is imperative for lawyers, litigants, and legal professionals navigating the intricate landscape of civil litigation. By adhering to the principles of natural justice, the CPC’s summons provisions contribute to fostering a legal system in India that is equitable and transparent.




Written By Nancy Sharma

I am Nancy Mahavir Sharma, a passionate legal writer and , a judicial service aspirant who is interested in legal researching and writing. I have completed Latin Legum Magister degree. I have been writing from past few years and I am excited to share my legal thoughts and opinions here. I believe that everyone has the potential to make a difference.

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