Our Criminal Lawyers have discussed below the law relating to “How to Registered FIR” as it is applied by Punjab and Haryana High Court at Chandigarh.
The First Information Report (F.I.R.) refers to a written document which a police officer prepares, and it contains information about t a criminal offence about a criminal offence being committed which could include robbery, murder, rape, kidnapping, etc. The FIR is the foremost and a necessary step to seek justice against any criminal offence.
People are often reluctant to file an FIR or approach the police, reasons being worried for family honour, or thinking that being involved in court proceedings could result in a lot of humiliation and defamation, or they fear the perpetrators or threats from the offenders; some think of it to be a tedious process. Owing to such apprehensions of people, most of the criminal activities do not get reported. This has unfortunately encouraged the criminals to commit more crimes. Hence, filing an F.I.R. is very important.
Some people do not file a legal complaint because they are apprehensive about getting involved in any criminal proceedings, which could drag for years before getting resolved, there are some who don’t have adequate information about what ought to be done in such situations. In case you also have a legal complaint to file but are clueless about the legal procedures, this article could familiarise you about the process of filing an F.I.R. and the actions to be followed thereafter.
Criminal Procedure Code, 1973 prescribes the detailed procedure to file a legal complaint in India. The following gives a step by step guide-
Who can file an FIR?
The victim of the offence to be reported can file an F.I.R., if the victim is not in a state to report or is deceased, any person on behalf of the victim can make the complaint. A legal complaint can also be filed by a person who had witnessed the crime when it place, or any other individual who knows about the commission of offence.
Where can you file an FIR?
An F.I.R. can be lodged for cognisable crimes only i.e. serious offences which involve punishment for 3 or more years under the Indian Penal Code (rape, murder, theft etc.) The police read the matter and direct it to the Magistrate in case it is a non cognisable offence (which attracts a punishment of less than 3 years). Generally, the F.I.R. ought to be filed at a police station near the place where the crime was committed or the one nearest to place of residence. However, if there is any confusion with respect to the jurisdiction of the police station where the F.I.R. should be filed, there is a provision for filing a zero F.I.R. in any police station. The case shall be later transferred to the police station which has competent jurisdiction in the case.
Important things to keep in mind while filing an FIR
Important things to be taken care of while filing an FIR
The F.I.R. ought to be filed as soon as possible after the incident to be reported has occurred. Any delay in filing shall also have to be mentioned in the report.
It must be ensured that the police officer has lodged the report in writing if it was narrated orally.
The F.I.R. must be recorded in a language which can be understood the person who has filed it.
All the relevant information related to the crime which is being reported, must be specified by the person filing an F.I.R.
As a layman, it might be hard for us to decide what information is considered as relevant information as per the law. Few of the details that should absolutely be mentioned in an F.I.R. include-
-Name of the perpetrator of the crime
– Victim /complainant against whom the crime has been committed
-Time when the crime was committed
-Location (specific place /locality/area) of the occurrence of crime
-The reason behind the crime according to the complainant?
-Actual process involved in committing the crime
– Names of the witnesses, if any
– What all was lost? (It could include Money /valuables/ physical damage, etc)
– Also if there are any evidences related to the crime
It must be ensured that the F.I.R and in the Daily Diary (DD) Register at the Police Station mention the arrival/departure time.
Once the F.I.R. has been recorded, it must be read carefully and then signed.
It must be ensured that the F.I.R. has been recorded by the officer in the book that he maintains for this purpose by the State Government.
Remedies available in case the police officer denies to register the FIR
The Superintendent of Police or any other official concerned can be directly met and notified about the complaint.
Complaint can be sent in writing through post to the Superintendent of Police concerned. If the officer is satisfied with the complaint, he would either order an investigation to be made or investigate the case himself.
A private complaint can be filed before the court having jurisdiction.
a. If the police act in a biased or corrupt manner or do nothing to enforce the law, then complainant can always approach the State Human Rights Commission or National Human Rights Commission.
When can you file an e-FIR?
An e-F.I.R. or an online complaint can be lodged against non-cognizable criminal offences only, i.e., the offences which would attract less than three years of punishment for the offender as prescribed by the Indian Penal Code, 1860. Some of the non-cognizable offences include cheating, assault, etc. An e-F.I.R. can be filed online by logging in to the specified website and filing an F.I.R. The complainant receives a confirmation receipt with date, along with a specific F.I.R. number in return. First, the complainant will log in to the portal, create a user ID and submit some personal information before the complaint can be filed. Subsequently the complainant will visit the concerned police station, along with the e-F.I.R. reference number to complete the remaining procedural formalities after which the police will proceed with further investigation.