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What will you do in an improper investigation

I filed an FIR for the offence of cheating. My friend took some money from me and now refusing to pay. He told me that he needs some money for her sister’s marriage. I had faith upon him and transferred money online in his bank account. After two years I asked him to pay the said money then he became violent and refused to pay. I inquired about his family and found that he has no sister. He cheated me and took money on a false promise. He has good contact with police officers. Therefore, the investigation is pending since last year.

If the investigating officer does not honestly perform his duty, you can approach the superior police officer under section 36 crpc. Section 36 of the code of criminal procedure (crpc) empowers the superintendent of police to either to do the investigation himself or to assign any subordinate officer.

Generally, the superior officer does not take any step under section 36 crpc because of workload. In that situation, you have a right to approach the concerned Magistrate under section 156(3) of the code of criminal procedure.

Monitoring of an improper investigation

Section 156(3) confers on the Magistrate a wide power to monitor the investigation. However, the Magistrate cannot interfere with the investigation, but he can watch the probe. A magistrate has the authority to direct the police officer to investigate or re-investigate the case. To exercise that power, he can instruct him to do a proper investigation and submit a status report.

In Union of India v. Prakash P. Hinduja (2003) 6 SCC 195; the Supreme Court holds that the Magistrate on an application under Section 156(3) CrPC pass appropriate order if he satisfied that

  • the investigating officer does not investigate the case properly.
  • the officer in charge of the police does not perform his duty of investigation

The Magistrate can undoubtedly direct the officer in charge of the police station to make a proper investigation, and he can further monitor the same.

In Sakiri Vasu v. State of U.P., (2008) 2 SCC 409; the Supreme Court holds that even though these powers not expressly mentioned in Section 156(3) CrPC, we are of the opinion that they implied in the above provision.

Hence, Magistrate has the power to monitor the case despite no such provision explicitly mentioned in section 156(3) crpc. If you approach the Magistrate under section 156(3) crpc and he did nothing on your application. Then, you can file a petition before the High Court under section 482 crpc for issues a direction for proper investigation.

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