In recent days there is increased negligence of police to register FIR on the basis of complaint. They are becoming more puppets under the hands of politicians rather than enforcers of law. I have collected observations of Karnataka High Court and Supreme Court of India regarding such matter in order to guide so many litigants desperately seeking their further step on such situations.
"Although it may not be strictly necessary for a complainant to approach the police before filing an application under Section 156(3) Cr.P.C, but as a matter of convenience and expedition, normally every genuine complainant first attempts to lodge an FIR at the police station. Thus most applications invoking Section 156(3) contain the averment that the police have (wrongly) refused to register the FIR of the cognizable offence. Section 154(1) makes it obligatory for officers in charge of
police stations to register FIRs of cognizable offences. If the officer in charge of police station refused to do so, the complainant has the remedy under Section 154(1) Cr.P.C. to send the substance of the FIR to the Superintendent of Police by post who has the power to investigate the offence himself or depute a subordinate officer to investigate. Experience shows that very few complainants avail of this right under
Section 154(1) Cr.P.C., apparently due to lack of knowledge. If even the Superintendent of Police also fails to act, in such a situation a complainant, if he wishes to pursue the matter further, adopts one of the following two alternatives. Either he seeks a direction under Section 156(3) Cr.P.C. or he files complaint under
Chapter XV Cr.P.C. before the Magistrate. The causes for non-registration of FIR at police stations in cognizable case can vary widely. The overworked police may be indifferent to the common man's woes, the accused may be influential, registering of FIRs may be refused to keep the crime statistics of that police station low. Also, in some cases the police may be aware of the true state of affairs and may refuse to register false or pre-emptive FIRs." Says Allahabad High Court in a case decided in 2002.
The court further observed that The scheme of Cr.P.C. and the prevailing circumstances require that the option to direct the registration of the case and its investigation by the police should be exercised where some "investigation" is required, which is of a nature that is not possible for the private complainant, and which can only be done by the police upon whom statute has conferred the powers essential for investigation, for example .
(1) where the full details of the accused are not known to the complainant and the same can be determined only as a result of investigation, or
(2) where recovery of abducted person or stolen property is required to be made by conducting raids or searches of suspected places or persons, or
(3) where for the purpose of launching a successful prosecution of the accused evidence is required to be collected and preserved. To illustrate by example cases may be visualised where for production before Court at the trial (a) sample of blood soaked soil is to be taken and kept sealed for fixing the place of incident; or (b) recovery of case property is to be made and kept sealed; or (c) recovery under Section 27 of the Evidence Act; or (d) preparation of inquest report; or (e) witnesses are not known and have to be found out or discovered through the process of investigation.
In the case of Ramesh Kumari v. State (NCT of Delhi) and Ors. (2006) 2 SCC 677 this Court has held that the provision of Section 154 is mandatory. Hence, the police
officer concerned is duty-bound to register the case on receiving information disclosing cognizable offence. Genuineness or credibility of the information is not a condition precedent for registration of a case. That can only be
considered after registration of the case. The mandate of Section 154 of the Code is that at the stage of registration of a crime or a case on the basis of the
information disclosing a cognizable offence, the police officer concerned cannot embark upon an enquiry as to whether the information, laid by the informant is reliable and genuine or otherwise and refuse to register a case on the ground that the information is not relevant or credible. In other words, reliability, genuineness and credibility of the information are not the conditions precedent for registering a case under Section 154 of the Code.
It is pointed out that in Ramesh Kumari v. State (NCT of Delhi) and Ors. (AIR
2006 SC 1322) this Court had said that whenever cognizable offence is disclosed the police officials are bound to register the same and in case it is not done, directions to register the same can be given.
"If you once forfeit the confidence of our fellow citizens you can never regain their respect and esteem. It is true that you can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time", Said Abraham Lincoln. Supreme Court of India in Raghubir Singh v. State of Haryana (AIR 1980 SC 1087), took note of these immortal observations while deprecating custodial torture by the police. If it is assuming alarming proportions, now a days, all around it is merely on account of the devilish devices adopted by those at the helm of affairs who proclaim from roof tops to be the defenders of democracy and protectors of peoples' rights and yet do not hesitate to condescend behind the screen to let loose their men in uniform to settle personal scores, feigning ignorance of what happens and pretending to be peace loving puritans and saviours of citizens' rights. Supreme Court of India has in a large number of cases expressed concern at the atrocities perpetuated by the protectors of law. Justice Brandies's observation which have become classic are in following
immortal words: "Government as the omnipotent and omnipresent teacher teaches the whole people by its example, if the Government becomes a law breaker, it breeds contempt for law, it invites every man to become a law into himself".
Justice ARIJIT PASAYAT, J. said in a case of 2003 before Supreme Court of India Police excesses and the maltreatment of detainees/under- trial prisoners or suspects
tarnishes the image of any civilised nation and encourages the men in 'Khaki' to consider themselves to be above the law and sometimes even to become law unto themselves. Unless stern measures are taken to check the malady of the very fence eating the crops, the foundations of the criminal justice delivery system would be shaken and the civilization itself would risk the consequence of heading, towards total decay resulting in anarchy and authoritarianism reminiscent of barbarism. The courts must, therefore, deal with such cases in a realistic manner and with the sensitivity which they deserve, otherwise the common man may tend to gradually
lose faith in the efficacy of the system of judiciary itself, which if it happens will be a sad day, for any one to reckon with.
In a Judgement pronounced in High Court of Karnataka in 1998 itself it was observed that "Corruption in a civilised society is a disease like cancer, which if not detected in time is sure to malignise the polity of country leading to disastrous consequences. It is termed as plague which is not only contagious but if not controlled spreads like a fire in a jungle. Its virus is compared with HIV leading to AIDS, being incurable. It has also been termed as Royal thievery. The socio-political system exposed to such a dreaded communicable disease is likely to crumble under its own weight. Corruption is opposed to democracy and social order, being not only anti people, but aimed and targeted against them. It affects the economy and destroys the cultural heritage. Unless nipped in the bud at the earliest, it is likely to cause turbulence shaking of the socio- economic-political system in an otherwise healthy, wealthy, effective and vibrating society."
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