If the Police refuses to register an F.I.R: Legal Remedies

Can the police refuse to register an FIR?

Filing an FIR is a beneficiary provided to the public at large and no one has the right to violate the right guaranteed by the law. But, the number of FIRs not registered is approximately equivalent to the number of FIRs actually registered i.e. about 60 lakh cognizable offences were in 2012 as per the supreme court of India in the case of Lalita Kumar v/s State of UP (2013)

However, the same judgment has provided that in certain types of cases, a preliminary inquiry may be allowed to be conducted, which will depend on the facts and circumstances of each case. The category of cases in which preliminary inquiry may be made are as under: a) Matrimonial disputes/ family disputes b) Commercial offences c) Medical negligence cases d) Corruption cases e) Cases where there is abnormal delay/laches over 3 months delay in reporting the matter without satisfactorily explaining the reasons for the delay.

As per supreme court constitution Bench ruling in the case of Lalita Kumar vs State of UP (2013), Registration of FIR is mandatory and there is no preliminary inquiry is permissible in such a situation. However, the same judgment has provided that in certain types of cases, preliminary inquiry may be allowed to be conducted, which will depend on the facts and circumstances of each case.  If the police still refuse to register the FIR, then, one of the legal remedies for getting FIR to be registered through the court of magistrate.

A study conducted by the Indian Institute of Public Opinion, New Delhi regarding “Image of the Police in India” which observed that over 50% of the respondents mention non- registration of complaints as a common practice in police stations. The National Police Commission in its 4th report lamented that the police “evade registering cases for taking up investigation where specific complaints are lodged at the police stations The Committee on Reforms of Criminal Justice System headed by Dr. Justice V.S. Malimath also noticed that even in cognizable cases quite often the Police officers do not entertain the complaint and send the complainant away saying that the offence is not cognizable.

Cases in which the police refuse to register an FIR

The police refuse to register an FIR in cases where:

  • the crime has not occurred within the jurisdiction of the particular police station – they must forward the relevant information to the appropriate police station having jurisdiction.
  • if the offense is of non-cognizable nature – in this case, they should enter the substance of the case in the station diary and refer the informant to approach the concerned Magistrate (See Section 155(1) of the Code of Criminal Procedure).
  • if the police are of the opinion that there is not sufficient prima facie evidence of a crime having been committed.
Remedies in Law

Approach Senior officer of Police

If the concerned officer in charge failed to register a F.I.R about commission of a cognizable offence within his territorial jurisdiction under Sec. 154(3), the informant can approach any senior officer of police or the Superintendent of Police or the Commissioner of the police with a written complaint or Send your complaint in writing to the Superintendent of Police (SP) or the Commissioner of the police by registered post. If, said officer satisfied that the complaint discloses a cognizable offence, he may moreover investigate the case himself or give directions to his subordinate to register the FIR and initiate investigation in the matter.

Complaint to Judicial Magistrate u/s 156(3) of Cr.P.C

If even after submitting a complaint to Senior Police officials no FIR is lodged then the informant is legally entitled to file a complaint to the Judicial Magistrate u/s 156(3) read with Section 190 of the Criminal procedure Code thereby requesting the FIR to be registered by the police and commencing investigation into the matter.

Alternate Remedy

A Writ Petition may be filed in respective High Court for seeking damages/compensation, if the inaction of the Police on the complaint/non-registration of FIR, has resulted in frustration/deprivation of ―life and liberty of any person, guaranteed under Article 21 of Constitution of India. Refusal to lodge an FIR on jurisdictional ground amounts to 1 year of Imprisonment for the Police officials. A Petition may be registered and submitted to the Chief Justice of the concerned High Court / Chief Justice of India, Supreme Court, asking them to take Su Moto Cognizance of the alleged contempt of the Court

Complain to Human Rights

An aggrieved person can file a case in the State human right commission of that state, or the National Human Right Commission against the police officer for denying the rights of the victim or that they are being negligent, biased or corrupt and an online complaint, find relevant information and also get the contact details of each State’s own Human Rights Commission office on the website of the National Human Rights Commission http://nhrc.nic.in



Spread the love