A First Information Report is the first legal document that initiates criminal proceedings. The first information received about the commission of a cognizable offense has to be noted down by a Police Officer. It is called as First Information Report.
Cognizable and Non-Cognizable Offences:
Cognizable offences are offences where the police can arrest the accused without any warrant. In such offences, the police can Suo-moto take cognizance of the offence and it does not require any sanction from the court in order to begin the investigation. On the other hand,
Non-Cognizable offences are those in which police cannot make an arrest without taking prior assent from the court. Schedule I of the Criminal Procedure Code clearly distinguishes which offenses are cognizable and which are not.
According to section 154(1) of the Criminal Procedural Code, an FIR can be filed only in cognizable offenses. Schedule 1 of the Criminal Procedural Code clearly distinguishes Cognizable and Non-Cognizable Offences.
Who can register an FIR?
Anyone who has knowledge of the commission of cognizable offence can request the Police to register an FIR. The Police is under obligation to take down the information narrated by the informant as it is and prepare the First Information Report. The information can be given orally or in written format. Section 154(2) of the Cr.P.C lays down the procedure to be followed while registering an FIR.
What to do if Police Officer refuses to register an FIR?
The police has discretionary power regarding the registration of an FIR. However, this power is not absolute; it is subject to reasonable justifications. Following are steps to be followed if a Police Officer unreasonably denies registering an FIR:
1. Complaint to Superintendent of that Police Officer:
According to section 154(3) of the Cr.P.C if a police officer refuses to register an FIR then a complaint in writing and by post can be sent to the Superintendent of Police concerned. If the Superintendent is satisfied that the subordinate police officer is unreasonably denying to register an FIR then the superintendent shall either investigate the case himself or direct an investigation to be made by any police officer subordinate to him.
2. Complaint to Judicial Magistrate:
If Police machinery doesn’t register FIR then a direct complaint can be given to the Judicial Magistrate. Section 156(3) read with section 190 of the Cr.P.C. provides that an application may be sent to the Judicial Magistrate or Metropolitan Magistrate seeking a direction to the police to register an FIR.
- In the case of Suresh Chandra Jain v. State of Madhya Pradesh the Supreme Court held that it is the duty of the officer-in-charge at a police station to lodge an FIR upon receiving information about a Cognizable Offense. Further, it was held that the complainant has a right to get a free copy of the FIR which is lodged.
- In the case of Latika Kumari v. Govt. of UP & Ors the Supreme Court has led down eight guidelines for registration of an FIR. In the same case, SC importantly remarked that if it is clear that a cognizable offense has been committed, the police are not required to do any kind of preliminary inquiry. It means that the preliminary inquiry is valid merely to the extent of determining whether the offense committed is cognizable or not. The Apex Court also mentioned the kind of cases in which the preliminary inquiry could be conducted by the police in family disputes, commercial offenses, medical negligence cases, corruption cases, and cases with abnormal delay. Also, the Court ordered that the preliminary inquiry must be started within 7 days of receiving the information of the offense.
IN THE COURT OF THE CHIEF METROPOLITAN MAGISTRATE AT _________
COMPLAINT CASE NO. __________ OF 20__
(Affix Court Fee stamp of Rs. ___)
IN THE MATTER OF:
Police Station _________
COMPLAINT UNDER SECTION 200 READ WITH SECTION 156(3) OF THE CODE OF CRIMINAL PROCEDURE FOR REGISTRATION OF FIR UNDER SECTION 323 AND 506 OF INDIAN PENAL CODE
THE COMPLAINANT ABOVE NAMED MOST RESPECTFULLY SHOWETH:
1. That the complainant is a law abiding citizen of India. The Complainant is a resident of Flat No____ in the ___________ area.
2. The Accused named above is the neighbor of the Complainant. Both houses are situated near to each other.
3. That the Complainant and Accused has separate parking spaces in front of their house. But the accused most of the time park one of their vehicle in the Parking space of Complainant and other Vehicle in his Parking Space.
4. That on _____ at about ____ 6.00 PM the Complainant reached home from his office and found that the accused parked his car in front of the house of Complainant. The Complainant went to the House of the accused to make him humble request to park his car in some other place as regularly he is causing in convenience to the Complainant. The Accused came out of his house with a stick and challenged the Complainant. The Complainant tried to pacify him, but he abused the Complainant. The Complainant objected to the abuses being burled by the accused. The accused then gave complaint 3 blows on complainant’s leg by using the stick in his hand. As a result, the Complainant received abrasions. The accused then criminally intimidated the Complainant with dire consequences in case complainant ever again visited him with such complaint or reported the matter to the Police.
5. That the occurrence was witnessed by Mr. _____________ and Mr. ____________, neighbors in the locality.
6. That the Complainant went to the Police station at _______________ to report the matter, but report was not registered. Complainant went to the Government hospital and got dressed his injuries. Copy of Complaint given to the Police Station at _____ on _____ is attached herewith as Annexure A.
7. That the Complaint had Complaint to the Senior Superintendent of Police by sending his Complaint by Registered Post. Even then, no action has so far been taken against the accused. Copy of Complaint sent to the Senior Superintendent of Police at ______ on ______ is attached herewith as Annexure B.
8. That the Accused has criminal record and he is of quarreling nature. FIR No_____ dated _________ and FIR No __________ dated has been filed by Mr. __________ another neighbor of the accused in earlier occasions. Copy of FIR No _________ and FIR No______________ dated ________ filed by Mr. ___________ is attached herewith as Annexure C.
9. Under this Circumstances, the Complainant Prays for legal action against the Accused.
P R A Y E R
In view of the aforesaid submission made here in and in the interest of the justice, it is therefore most respectfully prayed that this Hon’ble Court may graciously be pleased to:
1) Register the present complaint.
2) Take cognizance of the offence, as the contents per-se amount to commission of offences, as indicated above, without anything more.
3) Summon try and punish the accused person for committing the offences under section 323 and 506 of the IPC.
4) Pass such other or further orders as this Hon’ble Court may deem fit and proper in the facts and circumstances of the case.
AND FOR THIS ACT OF KINDNESS, THE HUMBLE APPLICANT AS IN DUTY BOUND, SHALL EVER PRAY.
Annexures to be attached with the Complaint
1. List of witness to be examined with name and address
2. Photograph of Complainant with Injuries
3. Medical Certificate issued by the CMO of Government Hospital
4. Copy of FIR No _________ and FIR No______________ dated ________ filed by Mr. ___________.
5. Copy of Complaint given to the Police Station at _____ on _____
6. Copy of Complaint sent to the Senior Superintendent of Police at ______ on ______
7. Any other relevant document related to the incident.
By- Harshwardhan Pawar and Aditi Batra (Intern)