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Existence of an ideal society with no offences and crimes is a mere distant dream. Every society in this world has to deal with crimes, offences, and misunderstandings among the citizens. At times, the issue can also involve the government agencies as well. The rate of crime does vary from one country to the other, but absolute eradication of crime is almost impossible.
Therefore, every society in this world has a stringent mechanism to deal with such crimes and handle situations in a justified manner. Every society is governed with a set of rule and legal code of conduct. In order to implement such legal code of conduct, almost every society has a police force working day and night in order to safeguard and protect the interests of the society.
Police forces of each society have their way of functioning and any citizen or even a visitor to the country can easily approach the police force for any issue at any point of time. They are in fact the citizens’ friends in need. But the people should be aware of the functioning of the police forces and the basic essential requirements they need to follow
Whenever a crime takes place, it is the responsibility of the citizens, whether victims of the crime or a neutral observer or any socially responsible person, to inform the required authority, in this case the police, about the crime. The most relevant question here is how should the police be informed? What is the procedure? The primary step would be to file an FIR.
FIR is the short form for First Information Report. As the name suggests, this is the first recorded information in the form of a report prepared by the police against a cognizable offence. This is the first recorded report which officially provides information to the police regarding an offence. This report legally binds the police to investigate the offence and bring justice to the aggrieved party. This report basically sets the police into action and act as a start to the process of investigation.
This is the initial report reported by a police officer on duty only. Such a report is either filed by the aggrieved party which may or may not include the victim or any other person who is aware of the commission of an alleged offence under the Indian Penal Code. The police team can commence their course of investigation and follow ups based on this First Information Report (FIR). A FIR related to a cognizable offence can be filed by any person, even if the person is not
FIR can also be filed by a person who might not have the first hand knowledge of the facts. FIR can be filed at the nearby police station of the area of offence. The police station should ideally be located at the concerned area of jurisdiction of the offence. An early FIR ensures fast tracking the pace of investigation and punishing the guilty effectively and efficiently. A delayed FIR can demean the importance of the offence apart from tampering with the evidences of such offence.
The investigation procedure followed by the concerned police department after receiving a FIR regarding an offence would include collecting evidences related to the offence, inspecting the crime scene, conducting forensic tests wherever and whenever necessary, recording statements of all the parties involved even distantly, questioning the witnesses, analyzing the facts and arrive at a conclusive decision after which necessary arrests are made.
Usually a FIR filed under section 154 of the Criminal Procedure Code needs to be filed at the nearby police station. The person who is filing the FIR needs to visit the police station personally. With the technological invasion into the society, people want to have all the power at their fingertips. Understanding this requirement, e filing of FIR has been permitted in certain states of India such as Tamil Nadu, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi, Madhya Pradesh, among others.
Mostly, the states allow filing an e-FIR is cognizable offences which include rape, kidnapping, murder, death related to dowry among others. In such cases, the police can make necessary arrests and detainment's even without the order of the court. In cases of non-cognizable offences such as cheating, stalking, and assault, a mere complaint can be filed online instead of a FIR. Such a complaint can be later escalated into a FIR by the police after seeking necessary permissions from the local magistrate.
Following a federal structure of governance, Police is a state subject as mentioned in the constitution. Thus, such services cannot attain uniformity under a common authority. Certain states in India, as mentioned in the above paragraph, allow filing an FIR online. Among those, each state has mandated its procedures. Each police force of the concerned state offers certain unique facilities for the benefits of the citizens. The citizens can easily follow their websites to understand the procedure of submission of FIR online in their jurisdiction. Such procedure is easy to follow and easy to pursue as well.
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