FIR must on complaints relating to sexual offences against women

11-10-2020

Agencies, New Delhi

Taking cognizance of recent crimes against women in Uttar Pradesh’s Hathras and other states, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has issued an advisory to all states and Union Territories (UTs) directing them for “mandatory” police action in such cases with compulsory registration of First Information Report (FIR). 

It has further warned that any failure on the part of the police to adhere to the mandatory requirements in crime against women will be inquired and necessary action will be taken immediately against the concerned officers responsible for the lapses. 

The advisory says, “It is requested that states and UTs may suitably issue instructions to all concerned to ensure strict compliance with the provisions in the law”. Compulsory registration of FIR in case of cognisable offence under sub section (1) of section 154 of the Code of Criminal Procedure 1973 (CrPC). The law also enables the police to register FIR or a ‘Zero FIR’ (in case the crime is committed outside the jurisdiction of police station) in the event of receipt of information on commission of a cognizable offence, which includes cases of sexual assault on women. 

Section 166 A/c) of IPC provides for punishment to a public servant for failure to record FIR in relation to cognizable offences punishable under section 326A, Section 326B, Section 354, Section 354B, Section 370, Section 370A, Section 376, Section 376DB, Section 376E or Section 509 in IPC. Section 173 of CrPC provides for completion of police investigation in relation to rape in two months. In order to facilitate the state police to monitor compliance, in this regard MHA has provided an online portal called Investigation Tracking System for Sexual Offences (ITSSO) for monitoring the same. 

This is available exclusively to law enforcement officers. Section 164-A or CrPC provides that in rape/sexual assault investigation the victim shall not be examined by a registered medical practitioner under consent within twenty-four hours from the time of receiving the information relating to the commission of such offence.