JOURNALISM INVOLVING THE INVESTIGATION AND EXPOSURE OF CORRUPTION, CRIME AND INEFFICIENCY ETC.

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An officer-in-charge of a police station is empowered by section 156, criminal procedure code to investigate any cognizable offence which occurs within the limits of his jurisprudence. He is also empowered under section 157 (1), criminal procedure code, to depute a subordinate to proceed to the spot to investigation the facts and circumstances of the case and if necessary, to take measures for the discovery and arrest of the offenders. Any police officer may be so deputed under this section, but where a police officer under the rank of assistant sub-inspector is deputed the investigation shall invariably be taken up and completed by the officer-in-charge of the police station or an assistant sub-inspector at the first opportunity. An officer-in-charge of a police station shall also render assistance whenever required to all officers of the (crime branch) working within his jurisdiction.

The powers and privileges of a police officer making an investigation are detailed in section 160 to 175, criminal procedure code.

An officer so making an investigation shall invariable issue an order in writhing in form 25.2(1) to any person summoned to attend such investigation and shall endorse on the copy of thee order retained by the person so summoned the date and time of his arrival at, and the date and time of this departure from, the place to which he is summoned. The duplicate of the order shall be attached to the case diary. No avoidable trouble shall be given to any person form whom enquires are made and no person shall be unnecessary detained. It is duty of an investigation officer to find out the truth of the matter under investigation. His object shall be to discover the actual facts of the case and to arrest the real offender or offenders. He shall not commit himself prematurely to any view of the facts for or against any person.

Though, the Police can only make the arrest if it is the only way to prevent such offence. The idea behind these provisions is to avert the commission of an offence. The constitutional validity of these Sections has always been in controversy. Many persons have filed petitions questioning the validity of the provisions of the preventive arrest. In a case, certain landowners of MP were protesting after being affected by the Sardar Sarovar Project. Even though they posed no threat to commit cognizable offences but were still beaten up and arrested. The Court held that this was in violation of Article 21 of the Constitution. However, section 151 already mentions the grounds of the arrests. Also, preventive arrest laws are given legal recognition under the Constitution of India.[xvii] So, these provisions cannot be said to be in violation of Articles 21 and Article 22.

In the case of Ahmed Noor Mohmmed Bhatti v State of Gujarat, it was suggested that the guidelines given for the detainees must be followed in cases of Preventive arrests as well. The Court gave these guidelines in the case of D K Basu v State of West Bengal. The Court also held that a provision is not unreasonable or unconstitutional because of arbitrary exercise of it by the authorities. Proper scrutiny of each case is to be done to determine whether the arrest is unconstitutional or not.

Police is an important part of a healthy society. We always remember Police first when we are in trouble or under a threat. The powers of the Police are invested in them to have a smooth and healthy society. But, they ultimately have a duty to protects the rights and interests of the individuals. Due to this, they must use their powers with the utmost care and caution. The author notes that there are many instances where the Police have misused these provisions and there should be a proper check on these practices.

When the occurrence of a cognizable offence in another police station jurisdiction is reported, the fact shall be recorded in the daily diary and information shall be sent to the office-in-charge of the police station in the jurisdiction of which the offence was committed. Meanwhile all possible lawful measures shall be taken to secure the arrest of the offender and the detection of the offence.

If a police officer after registration a case and commencing and investigation discovers that the information to the officer-in-charge of such station. Upon receipt of information such officer shall proceed without delay to the place where the investigation is being held and undertake the investigation. Should the officer who is thus summoned to the spot dispute the jurisdiction, both officers shall jointly carry on the investigation under the orders of the senior officer and neither shall leave until question of jurisdiction has been settled and acknowledged. The case record shall be kept at the police station where the information was first received until the question of jurisdiction has been decided.

There have been many instances when these powers have been misused by the Police as well. This was because of the arbitrary and unjust use of these powers. In a case, the persons arrested under section 107 and section 151 were not given a chance to be heard for 6 days. The case was tried without any scrutiny under issue. And, no order was issued under section 111 of the CrPC. The Karnataka HC held that this process was arbitrary and unjust as the Police didn’t follow proper procedure.

Agencies involved in investigation processes have to deal with vast amounts of information, both in physical and digital formats. A case management process model must exist and be able to easily interact with the physical investigation. It is also critical to have a proper mechanism to gather, share and access information. For detectives, this is a challenge that can directly affect the integrity and solvability of the case.

There are two primary process model requirements that any investigative case management solution must meet:

The solution must be specific enough that general technology requirements for each phase can be developed (such as forms to eliminate manual processes, role-based security, notification controls, and reporting capabilities to meet compliance and audits).

The foundation of the solution must apply to any investigative process (the workflow must be built in the system to address multiple facets of business process management, capable of withstanding minor customizations yet maintaining best practices).

Compliance is a key issue in almost every vertical market. Whether satisfying legislative requirements covering anti-corruption, identifying fraud, ensuring accounting standards, or preventing money laundering, process management technologies have earned their incitement to ensure compliance. Built-in workflow requirements such as preventing users from proceeding to the next stage of an investigation and maintenance of user access and data changes in a case ensure an auditable trail. Process management has proven its worth in recording all stages of an investigation to guarantee activities such as audits, compliance, evidence tracking, and data monitoring.. A proven process model must be built into case management solutions to ensure compliance.

If the case is one which the officer-in-charge of the police station may lawfully investigate, but which may also be lawfully and more successfully investigated in another police station such officer while continuing his investigation, shall refer the matter to the superintendent, who shall transfer the case or not as he sees fit.

It is desired to transfer the case to a police station in another district, the superintendent shall refer the matter to the district magistrate and move him to according to the orders contained in chapter 26, volume iii of the rules and orders of the high court. When an investigation has been transferred from one district to another the police files with the original first information report shall be forwarded to he superintendent of the district to which the transfer is made.

A report of a cognizable offence is received, the investigation staff of the police station concerned is already occupied with more important cases, the investigation of which would suffer by being interrupted, such report shall be duly recorded and investigation may be dispensed with. Such action shall not be held to limit the discretion of the officer in charge of the police station to investigate the case at a later date, if he thinks it. If the informant is present when the first information report is recorded, he shall be informed forthwith that no investigation will be made, and after nothing this fact in the first information report, his signature or thumb mark shall be taken on it. If the informant is not present be shall be informed in writing by post card, or by the delivery of a notice by hand and the fact that ibis has been done shall be noted in the first information report. When investigation is dispensed with a note shall be made in the first information report stating whether the complainant desires an investigation or not and full reasons shall be given for abstaining from investigation. All such cases shall be brought to the notice of the superintendent of police personally, who shall pass such orders on them as he may think fit in accordance with the principle embodied in this rule.

INVESTIGATION IN COGNIZABLE CASES.

No police officer shall investigate a non-cognizable offence unless ordered to do so by a competent magistrate under section 196-B or 202, Criminal Procedure Code.

When an investigation in a non-cognizable case in thus ordered and is taken up by the police under section 155(3), criminal procedure code, it must be carried through in the same manner as if the offence were cognizable, except that no arrest shall be made without a warrant. In every such case a police officer making an investigation shall day by day enter his proceedings in a case diary and submit them daily as prescribed for cognizable cases in police rule 25-53. case diaries shall e submitted through the gazetted officer concerned to the court, which has ordered investigation. No copies shall be prepared or kept by the police. The high court has ordered that only serious cases, and cases in which there are special reasons to do so, shall be referred to the police. Superintendent of police shall decline to accept for action references, in which provisions of section 202, criminal procedure code, itself and the instructions of the high court referred to above have not been strictly complied with.

All orders in writing made in a case, order to arrest, to search and to summon, etc. shall be attached to the case diaries, or heir absence shall be satisfactorily accounted for.

EXPERT EVIDENCE.

The above rules so not apply to references to the finger print bureau and the chemical examiner to the Punjab government to whom under the rules applicable, superintendents of police are required to make references direct. The crime branch is however in direct contact with both these technical officers and investigation officers should enlist its co-operation when any specially intricate work is required of them. Nothing in the preceding sub-rule shall debar a superintendent of police or investigation officer from availing himself of any expert technical assistance which may be directly available to him, of the purpose of investigation. If expert evidence is to be given in court, however, it should be provided by government experts only, when such experts exist.

When a government servant is accused or is suspected of the commission of an offence in the course of this official duties his immediate departmental superior shall as far as may be wise and practicable, be kept informed regarding the course of the police investigation.

MEDICAL EXAMINATION OF WOMAN.

No examination by a medical officer of a living woman’s person shall be made without her consent and without a written order from a magistrate, addressed to the medical officer, directing him to make such examination.

In all cases in which the police consider such an examination to be necessary the woman shall be taken before a magistrate for orders. This rule shall also apply to similar examinations by dhais or any other persons.

The word “person” applies only to those parts of the body, to expose which would violate a woman’s modesty. Female assistant of sub-assitant surgeon in government shall only be required to do medico-legal work on behalf of government when the woman or girl concerned refuses to be examined by a male doctor. When a female doctor is summoned by a court she must attends (Punjab Government endorsement no. 558-M-36/9932, dated the 25th march 1936).

METHODS OF RECORDING FOOTPRINTS;

  • by the tracing through glass-foot prints found on the ground or other surface, and

  • By taking impressions of feet direct on to paper as in the case of finger impressions are taught at the police training school. Such records shall be utilized in the case of notorious criminal for comparison with foot prints found at the scene of offence. They may also be used to check the reliability of local tracker.

DISINTERMENT OF BODIES.

  • An officer in charge of police station and any superior police officer, lawfully making an investigation into the unnatural or sudden death of any person shall on learning that the body of the deceased person has been formally buried, record in writing the information which has reached him and the grounds on which he considers it necessary that the body should be disinterred.

  • He shall forward the information so recorded to the nearest magistrate empowered to hold inquests and ask for an order under section 176(2) code of criminal procedure and in the meantime shall guard the grave.

  • On receipt of such order, if the magistrate himself does not attend the disinterment, such police officer shall in the presence of two or more respectable inhabitants of the neighborhood cause the body to be disinterred. Such police officer shall then comply with the provision of section 174 code of criminal procedure.

  • Police officers shall invariably examine witnesses to prove the identity of disinterred bodies before commencing their investigation.

  • When a body has lain in the grave for a period exceeding three weeks no disinterment shall be made by any police officer until the opinion of the district health officer has been obtained, and then only with the occurrence of the district magistrate.

In cases where it is impossible either to send a body to a qualified medical officer or to have it examined by such officer on the spot, the investigating officer may at his discretion, request the nearer government medical officer even though such officer be not authorized to conduct post mortem examination, to assist him with his anatomical and other expert knowledge in estimating the effects and causes of injuries, such medical officers are not empowered to perform any operation on the body. Medical officers of the irrigation and public Health Departments and of local bodies cannot be called upon in this connection unless they have been specially authorized by the provincial Government to undertake medico-legal work.

If a body is unidentified, the officer making the investigation shall record a careful description of it, giving all marks, peculiarities, deformities and distinctive features, shall take finger impressions and in addition to taking all other reasonable steps to secure identification shall if possible have it photographed, and in cases where such action appears desirable, a description published in the criminal intelligence gazette.

Unidentified corpse should be handed over to any charitable society or to an institution for imparting instruction in Medical Science, which is willing to accept them. If no such society or medical institution volunteers to take such corpses, they should be buried in the normal manner.

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