What are the consequences of non registration of FIR?
Consequences of Non-Registration of FIR in India: A Lawyer’s Perspective
As a lawyer, I can tell you that the consequences of non-registration of an FIR for a cognizable offense in India are dire and far-reaching. They affect not only the immediate victim but also the fabric of our legal system and public trust in law enforcement.
For the Victim:
- Denial of Justice: The primary consequence is the denial of access to justice. Without an official record of the crime, the police are under no legal obligation to investigate. This significantly diminishes the chances of apprehending the perpetrator, recovering losses, or obtaining any form of legal recourse.
- Psychological Impact: The victim can be left feeling helpless, frustrated, and traumatized. The lack of official recognition of their suffering adds to the emotional distress and can even discourage them from reporting future crimes.
- Increased Vulnerability: If the police inaction emboldens the perpetrator, the victim may face further harassment or even physical harm.
For the Police Officer:
- Criminal Liability: Under Section 166 of the Indian Penal Code, refusing to register an FIR for a cognizable offense is a criminal offense punishable by imprisonment of up to two years, fine, or both.
- Disciplinary Action: The officer could face internal disciplinary proceedings, including suspension or dismissal, for violating the mandatory duty to register cognizable offenses.
- Erosion of Public Trust: Such blatant disregard for legal obligations can severely damage public trust in the police force, raising concerns about corruption, apathy, and bias.
For the Legal System:
- Skewed Data: Incomplete crime data based solely on registered FIRs hinders effective crime prevention strategies and resource allocation. It prevents a true picture of criminal activity and can lead to misinformed policies.
- Culture of Impunity: If not held accountable for non-registration, police officers may develop a culture of impunity, further discouraging victims from reporting crimes and perpetuating cycles of injustice.
- Loss of Legitimacy: The legal system itself loses legitimacy when its procedures are blatantly disregarded, impacting the overall faith in the rule of law.
- Fight for your Rights: You have the right to file an FIR for any cognizable offense. If the police refuse, you can file a complaint with the Superintendent of Police, approach the Judicial Magistrate, or seek legal advice to pursue further remedies.
- Know your Options: Consult a lawyer specializing in criminal law to understand your options and navigate the legal process. They can help you file complaints, draft necessary documents, and represent you in court.
- Hold them Accountable: Don’t let police inaction deter you. By asserting your rights and holding authorities accountable, you can contribute to strengthening the legal system and protecting others from similar injustice.
The consequences of non-registration of an FIR are far-reaching and demand immediate action. Remember, you are not alone, and legal avenues exist to protect your rights and ensure justice prevails.