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Niceties of the Section 154 Crpc (F.I.R.)


INTRODUCTION :


In the age of modernization and development the rate of crime is also surging up rapidly and many times it goes unreported and the justice gets compromised, but with the growing legal education in the society people are gradually gaining faith in the legal system. FIR is one such potent instruments which helps the society to fight against the evil forces, FIR stands for first information report, which carries a principal object from informant's viewpoint is that "to set the criminal law into motion" and on the other hand through the optics of investigation officer is to "gather the information regarding alleged criminal activities, and get them to justice.


Why is FIR called FIR?

It's called FIR because of its nature being the first descriptive information reduced into the writings and formally signed by the informant.


Ingredients of an FIR

  • An FIR must have been a detailed information about Cognizable offenses regarding the alleged offense.

  • FIR should be reduced into writing by the police officer and also enter the substance in the station diary alias FIR diary.

  • FIR should be read over to the informant so that he could confirm about the details provided by him.

  • FIR should be signed by the informant so that the information could later be used for some evidentiary purposes.

  • However, Proviso to subsection 1 of section 154 mandates the FIR to be recorded by a woman police officer or any woman officer only, and further, it also exempts woman who is temporarily or permanently, mentally or physically disabled and against whom sexual offenses have been committed or attempted under sections 354, 354A, 354B, 354C, 354D, 376A-E, or 509 of Indian penal code, from coming to police station, the information given by the victim of such offenses shall be recorded by the woman police officer at the residence of such victim or at any place as per the convenience and choice of the victim.

  • Information so given shall be recorded in the presence of interpreter or special educator and shall be video graphed.

In such cases sexual offenses the police officer is duty-bound to get the statement recorded before the judicial magistrate under section 164(a)(5A).

  • A copy of FIR shall be given to the informant, free of cost.

(Cognizable offenses are those offense which are described in the First schedule and defined in section 2(c) of Cr.Pc which reads as; cognizable offenses means an offense in which, a police officer may, in accordance with the first schedule or under any law for the time being in force, arrest without warrant.)


CASE LAW:


Lalita kumari v.Government of UP, 2014SC

In the above judgment the hon'ble supreme court held that;

  • Registration of FIR is mandatory under Section 154 of the Code, if the information discloses commission of a cognizable offense and no preliminary inquiry is permissible in such a situation.

  • If the information received does not disclose a cognizable offense but indicates the necessity for an inquiry, a preliminary inquiry may be conducted only to ascertain whether the cognizable offense is disclosed or not.

  • If the inquiry discloses the commission of a cognizable offense, the FIR must be registered.


Refusal to lodge an FIR in offenses against women.


Section 166-A IPC, was inserted through the Criminal Law Amendment Act, 2013, which invoked the rigorous punishment for not less than six months and extendable up to two years for the public servant failing to record information given to him by the victim under section 154(1) Cr.Pc.

Other remedies on refusal to lodge an FIR.

  1. Aggrieved may go to a superior police officer or send the substance of the information by post to the Superintendent of police under section 154(3) Cr.pc,

  2. Aggrieved may go to the judicial magistrate under 156(3) Cr.pc wherein, magistrate, may order the police officer to investigate or to lodge an FIR in particular.

  3. Aggrieved may go to a judicial magistrate under section 200 Cr.pc.for filing a complaint.

  4. Aggrieved may go to the Hon'ble High court under section 482 Cr.pc.The complaint can't go directly to the Hon'ble High Court, rather he/she has to go to a superior police officer first.

Evidentiary value of FIR.

The FIR in the criminal trial is a very vital and crucial piece of evidence for the purpose of corroboration and contradictions.


For the Prosecution:

The prosecution side can use FIR for the purpose of Corroboration under section 157 of The Indian Evidence Act, which helps the court to determine the veracity of an FIR.


For the defense:

The defense could use the FIR for the Contradiction or for the purpose of cross-examination under section 145 of the Indian Evidence Act.


As a Dying Declaration:

Dying declaration is an important piece of evidence, the cases in which the informant dies after lodging an FIR, such FIR be admissible as a Dying Declaration and a substantive piece of evidence under section 32(1) of The Indian Evidence Act.


Types of FIR:


CROSS FIR:

In the cases of cross FIR, the FIRs are being lodged from both the parties independently, and the court rather than quashing it, clubs the two, upon which investigation has proceeded.


ZERO FIR:

Whenever the victim reaches in the jurisdiction of the police station other than where the offense is originally committed, then FIR is lodged by such police station but FIR is left without number, and subsequently gets transferred to the concerned police station having jurisdiction.

So finally, FIR is the first step to fight the wrongs against the society as a whole, and it is the duty of every individual to report the offenses to get justice done and contribute to the dream for a crimeless society.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Mr. Aditya Narayan Sharma is an Advocate at Madhya Pradesh.

Edited by Rudra Prasad

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