FIRST INFORMATION REPORT
A First Information Report (F.I.R) is a written document which contains information about the commission of a cognisable or non-cognisable offence and is prepared by the police. Generally, it is a complaint lodged by the victim of the cognizable offence or by someone on his/her behalf to the police and after the FIR is registered then the police start its investigation. It is a document which sets the process of criminal justice in motion and only after its registration in the police station that police may proceed with the investigation.
Contents of FIR:
The checklist to be kept in mind while drafting an FIR:
- Name, address and contact number of the informant,
- Name(s), address and contact number of the offender(s),
- Relationship of the offender with the victim,
- Detailed information and narrative of the offence i.e. what led to the commission of the offence.
- The number of people involved in the offence and roles played by the involved in the illegal act.
- Name of the witness(s) in case there were any, along with their address and contact details.
- Description of the complete incidence and mention whether any weapons or other articles were used.
- Nature and value of the property, in case of property, was taken away.
- Details of the evidence(s) if there are any like emails, text messages or any other written documents.
- Description of the location of the incident.
- Specify the date and time of the incident.
- Specify the person(s) may have doubt on or the motive or intention of the offender.
- Any threats or special treatment promised or given by the offenders.
- The reason behind the delay in filing the FIR.
- Lastly, make sure that the informant sign or place a thumb impression on the FIR.
It is kind of FIR that can be filed in any police station regardless of the place of incidence or jurisdiction. Later after investigating and filing it with a magistrate the same is transferred to the Police Station having competent jurisdiction. The difference between Zero FIR and ordinary FIR is that the latter has a serial number in the police station and former is registered in any police station and not numbered. The Police Station registering the Zero number FIR is required to make some prelude investigation into the case before directing it to the concerned Police Station.
Justice Verma committee Report recommended the provision of Zero FIR in the new Criminal Law (Amendment) Act, 2013 formed after the December 2012 gang rape of a girl.
The Centre had issued a mandate to all the states to make amendments in the state laws and register the Zero FIR without getting into argument related to the jurisdiction. Basically, it is free jurisdictional FIR, brought in order to avoid the delay in filing the crime and avoid wastage of time.
Firstly, e-FIR means electronic FIR and its motive is to help those victims who may not be able to file FIR at the nearby police station and the reasons for it may be different like not able to face the society, injury etc.
An e-FIR can be filed in case of cognizable offence like rape, murder, dowry death etc. where the police have the liberty to arrest the accused without a warrant and in case of non-cognizable offences a complaint could be filed online.
There are different patterns for different states to file an e-FIR.
Who can file an FIR?
Anybody who has either witnessed a crime scene or has any information regarding the crime, of course, the victim of the crime can file FIR.
When can an FIR be filed?
An FIR must be filed immediately and in case of any delay, there must be a valid reason for it. The person filing the FIR must get a free copy of it.
Why should one file an FIR?
It is a very important document which helps the police take up an investigation against the wrongdoer and that can only be done after registration of FIR.
What about FIR is filed?
The police are obligated to start the investigation which includes collecting evidence, interrogating witnesses, inspecting the crime scenes and forensic testing shreds of evidence. If the police are not satisfied with evidence received then the police may shut the case and inform the person who filed the FIR with valid reasons.
What if the FIR is not registered?
You can approach the police officer on higher posts like Deputy Inspector General of Police and bring your complaint in notice or may send it in writing by post to the Superintendent of Police, or you may approach the court by writing a complaint privately, or a complaint can file in State or National Human Rights Commission if the police is not taking necessary steps or is being biased or corrupt, or especially, a woman can file a complaint in the National Commission for Women (it is national level organization mandated to protect the interests of women).
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Tags :Criminal Law