Section 299, however, lays down that where an accused person has absconded, the court may, in his absence examine the witnesses, if any, produced on behalf of the prosecution and record their deposition and any such depositions may, on the arrest of such person, be given in evidence against him on the inquiry into, or trial for the offence with which he is charged* If the deponent is dead or incapable of giving evidence or cannot be found or his presence cannot be procured without any amount of delay, expense or inconvenience which, under the circumstances of the case would be unreasonable.

Similarly, if it appears that an offence punishable with death or imprisonment for life has been committed by some person or persons unknown, the High Court or the Sessions Judge may direct that any Magistrate of the first class hold an inquiry and examine any witnesses who can give evidence concerning the offence and any depositions so taken may be given in evidence against any person who is subsequently accused of the offence if the deponent is dead or incapable of giving evidence or beyond the limits of India.

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