Tag Archives: Investigation of Case

Criminal Jurisprudence – Requires a Fair and Truthful Investigation

The principle in criminal jurisprudence requires a fair and truthful investigation. If an investigating agency which has been conferred the power to investigate on the basis of an FIR, if a second FIR as regards the same transaction is introduced, it is likely to be abused i.e. keeping in mind the interest of the accused. From the point of view of the victim when such information comes within the knowledge of the investigating officer, he can treat it as a part of continuing investigation under the Code and eventually file the charge-sheet or an additional charge-sheet as contemplated under Section 173 of the Code. The interests of both are involved. A fair investigation, conceptually speaking, is an acceptable facet of criminal jurisprudence, similarly it is also the duty of the courts to see whether the investigation carried out really causes prejudice to the accused requiring the court to exercise the power under Section 482 or Article 226 of the Constitution to quash the same, or it has looked into the interest of both the accused and the victim and, therefore, it should be left for the trial court to see the veracity of the truth of allegations that has come out in investigation. Manoj Kumar v. State of Uttarakhand, (2019) 5 SCC 667

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Accused – Has No Right to Choose the Investigating Agency

In Narmada Rai v. State of Gujarat, (2011) 5 SCC 79, it was held as under:

        “It is trite law that accused persons do not have a say in the matter of appointment of an Investigation Agency. The accused persons cannot choose as to which Investigation Agency must investigate the alleged offence committed by them.”

        Further in the case of Rajendra Bhatt v. Union of India, (2016) 1 SCC 1 it was held as under:

        “The accused has no right with reference to the manner of investigation or mode of prosecution.”

        The Hon’ble Apex Court in Romila Thapar v. Union of India, (2018) 10 SCC 753, has held as under:         “It is clear that the consistent view of this Court is that the accused cannot ask for changing the Investigating Agency or to do investigation in a particular manner including for Court monitored investigation.” Silpa Devi Patel v. State of U.P., 2020 (110) ACC 514.

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Informant – Cannot be the Investigator

In a criminal prosecution, there is an obligation cast on the investigator not only to be fair, judicious and just during investigation, but also that the investigation on the very face of it must appear to be so, eschewing any conduct or impression which may give rise to a real and genuine apprehension in the mind of an accused and not mere fanciful, that the investigation was not fair. In the circumstances, if an informant police official in a criminal prosecution, especially when carrying a reverse burden of proof, makes the allegations, is himself asked to investigate, serious doubts will naturally arise with regard to his fairness and impartiality. It is not necessary that bias must actually be proved. It would be illogical to presume and contrary to normal human conduct, that he would himself at the end of the investigation submit a closure report to conclude false implication with all its attendant consequences for the complainant himself. The result of the investigation would therefore be a foregone conclusion. Mohan Lal  v. State of Punjab, (2018) 17 SCC 627.

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Police Officer – Power to Arrest

No arrest should be made only because the offence is non-bailable and cognizable and therefore, lawful for the police officers to do so. The existence of the power to arrest is one thing, the justification for the exercise of it is quite another. Apart from the power to arrest, the police officers must be able to justify the reasons thereof. No arrest can be made in a routine manner on a mere allegation of commission of an offence made against a person. It would be prudent and wise for a police officer that no arrest is made without a reasonable satisfaction reached after some investigation as to the genuineness of the allegation.
A person accused of an offence punishable with imprisonment for a term which may be less than seven years or which may extend to seven years with or without fine, cannot be arrested by the police officer only on his satisfaction that such person had committed the offence punishable as aforesaid. A police office before arrest, in such cases has to be further satisfied that such arrest is necessary to prevent such person from committing any further offence; or for proper investigation of the case; or to prevent the accused from causing the evidence of the offence to disappear; or tampering with such evidence in any manner; or to prevent such person from making any inducement, threat or promise to a witness so as to dissuade him from disclosing such facts to the court or the police officer; or unless such accused person is arrested, his presence in the court whenever required cannot be ensured. The law mandates the police officer to state the facts and record the reasons in writing which led him to come to a conclusion covered by any of the provisions aforesaid, while making such arrest. The law further requires the police officers to record the reasons in writing for not making the arrest.
In pith and core, the police officer before arrest must put a question to himself, why arrest? Is it really required? What purpose will it serve? What object will it achieve? It is only after these questions are addressed and one or the other conditions as enumerated above is satisfied, the power of arrest needs to be exercised. Arnesh Kumar v. State of Bihar and another, (2014) 8 SCC 273.

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