Though the word “retrial” is used under Section 386(b)(i) Cr.P.C., the powers conferred by this clause is to be exercised only in exceptional cases, where the appellate court is satisfied that the omission or irregularity has occasioned in failure of justice. The circumstances that should exist for warranting a retrial must be such that where the trial was undertaken by the Court having no jurisdiction, or trial was vitiated by serious illegality or irregularity on account of the misconception of nature of proceedings. An order for retrial may be passed in cases where the original trial has not been satisfactory for some particular reasons such as wrong admission or wrong rejection of evidences or the Court refused to hear certain witnesses who were supposed to be heard.
`De novo’ trial means a “new trial” ordered by an appellate court in exceptional cases when the original trial failed to make a determination in a manner dictated by law. The trial is conducted afresh by the court as if there had not been a trial in first instance. Undoubtedly, the appellate court has power to direct the lower court to hold `de novo’ trial. But the question is when such power should be exercised. As stated in Pandit Ukha Kolhe v. State of Maharashtra (1964) SCR 926, the Court held that:
“An order for retrial of a criminal case is made in exceptional cases, and not unless the appellate court is satisfied that the Court trying the proceeding had no jurisdiction to try it or that the trial was vitiated by serious illegalities or irregularities or on account of misconception of the nature of the proceedings and on that account in substance there had been no real trial or that the Prosecutor or an accused was, for reasons over which he had no control, prevented from leading or tendering evidence material to the charge, and in the interests of justice the appellate Court deems it appropriate, having regard to the circumstances of the case, that the accused should be put on his trial again. An order of re-trial wipes out from the record the earlier proceeding, and exposes the person accused to another trial which affords the prosecutor an opportunity to rectify the infirmities disclosed in the earlier trial, and will not ordinarily be countenanced when it is made merely to enable the prosecutor to lead evidence which he could but has not cared to lead either on account of insufficient appreciation of the nature of the case or for other reasons.”