The police officer cannot avoid his duty of registering offence if cognizable offence is disclosed. Action must be taken against erring officers who do not register the FIR if information received by him discloses a cognizable offence and the same was upheld by High Court of Delhi through the learned bench led by JUSTICE CHANDRA DHARI SINGH in the case of TEPANDER GIRI vs. SHO & ORS. [W.P.(CRL) 2094/2020] on 29.03.2022.
The facts of the case are that one Mr. Netrapal Yadav had vacated the property in Gharoli Dairy Farm, Delhi and ran somewhere with all his belongings. Mr. Joginder Bhati and his associates tried to encroach the said property, demolished the entire structure and raised illegal/unauthorized construction and have taken unlawful possession of the said property. As per the provisions of the Delhi Municipal Corporation Act, 1957, no one can raise any construction without obtaining prior approval from the Municipal Corporation.
Complaints were addressed to the highest officers of the Corporation as well as the police officers of respondent, therefore, it is mandatory for the police/investigating agency to register an FIR and thereby direct for investigation. The instant writ petition under Article 226 of the Constitution of India, read with Section 482 of Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 has been filed by the Petitioner seeking to conduct detail and thorough enquiry/investigation on the complaint of the petitioner.
The petitioner’s counsel submitted that it was the statutory and official duty of respondent to register the FIR and start the investigation of the matter, however, till date nothing has been done on the said complaint. As per the provisions of the Delhi Municipal Corporation Act, 1957, no one can raise any construction without obtaining prior approval from the Municipal Corporation and in the instant case, no approval had been taken by Mr. Joginder Bhati to carry out the said construction on the said property.
The counsel for the State submitted that the complaints given by the petitioner have no specific allegations of demand/acceptance of bribe, misappropriation of funds or abuse of official position against any specific officer of the Corporation. Such type of complaints are normally forwarded to the concerned CVO for inquiry and necessary action at their end. It was also submitted that the petitioner has no locus standi in this petition as the mother of the petitioner as well as the petitioner herein is not the allottee of the property in question, and the petitioner himself is trespasser on the said property.
The Court held that if the information given to a police officer discloses cognizable offence, the concerned police officer has no option, but to register an FIR. The police officer cannot avoid his duty of registering offence if cognizable offence is disclosed. Action must be taken against erring officers who do not register the FIR if information received by him discloses a cognizable offence.
It was observed that “if the information received does not disclose a cognizable offence but indicates the necessity for an inquiry, a preliminary inquiry may be conducted only to ascertain whether cognizable offence is disclosed or not. If the inquiry discloses the commission of a cognizable offence, the FIR must be registered.”
Judgment reviewed by – Shristi Suman