Home Minister P. Chidambaram may have advised all state police for immediate registration of First Information Reports (FIRs) on mere complaints, but the Delhi Police thinks otherwise.
In an affidavit filed in the Supreme Court of India in September 2009, the Delhi Police had contended “compulsory registration of cases (FIR) on the mere receipt of a complaint has a potential of misuse, leading to substantial harassment of law abiding and innocent citizens”.
A Supreme Court bench comprising Justices B.N. Agarwal and G.S. Singhvi, while hearing the case of Lalita Kumari versus Government of Uttar Pradesh and Others, had asked all the states to respond on the query why police does not register an FIR on the basis of a complaint.
“There are numerous possibilities of harassment which could be caused by mere registration of an FIR and the same becomes relevant specially where there are political enmities, rivalries and matrimonial disputes,” Delhi Police had said.
Delhi Police had categorised cases to indicate potential misuse in case registration of an FIR is made mandatory on mere receipt of complaint.
The court was hearing a petition filed by Lalita Kumari, who alleged that her complaint about her missing minor daughter was not acted upon by the UP police.
She claimed that she had to run from pillar to post to get an FIR registered, which was done only after the directions of the Superintendent of Police.
Delhi Police in its reply said preliminary inquiry is required before registering an FIR in cases pertaining to property disputes, will and power of attorneys, economic offences and dowry harassment.
“After an FIR has been lodged, till such the time the case remains pending, the individual cannot get employment in a government department, a criminal proceeding is a bar to obtain passport under Section 6 (2) (f) of the Passport Act (1967) and a government officer cannot get promotion,” Delhi Police had said.
“Terrorist groups or its front organisations could file frivolous cases against police officers and others to demoralize the system. Unscrupulous property agents filing cases against genuine owners by doctoring records and vulnerability of people in position and power to complaints filed by those not getting decision in their favour.”