Supreme Court: Extrajudicial Police Investigations and Successive FIRs Illegal, Upholds Citizens’ Fundamental Rights

Landmark Judgment Law Insider (1)

Published on: April 23, 22:02 IST

Court: Supreme Court of India

Citation: T.T. Antony v. State of Kerala 2001

Honourable Supreme Court of India has held that extrajudicial investigation by the Police is violation of fundamental rights of the citizens. It is held that the successive First Information Report on the same cause of action is deemed illegal and any fresh investigation based on the second or successive FIRs for the same cause of action is must be quashed.

27. A just balance between the fundamental rights of the citizens under Articles 19 and 21 of the Constitution and the expansive power of the police to investigate a cognizable offence has to be struck by the court. There cannot be any controversy that sub-section (8) of Section 173 CrPC empowers the police to make further investigation, obtain further evidence (both oral and documentary) and forward a further report or reports to the Magistrate. In Narang case it was, however, observed that it would be appropriate to conduct further investigation with the permission of the court. However, the sweeping power of investigation does not warrant subjecting a citizen each time to fresh investigation by the police in respect of the same incident, giving rise to one or more cognizable offences, consequent upon filing of successive FIRs whether before or after filing the final report under Section 173(2) CrPC. It would clearly be beyond the purview of Sections 154 and 156 CrPC, nay, a case of abuse of the statutory power of investigation in a given case. In our view a case of fresh investigation based on the second or successive FIRs, not being a counter-case, filed in connection with the same or connected cognizable offence alleged to have been committed in the course of the same transaction and in respect of which pursuant to the first FIR either investigation is under way or final report under Section 173(2) has been forwarded to the Magistrate, may be a fit case for exercise of power under Section 482 CrPC or under Articles 226/227 of the Constitution.

Drafted By Abhijit Mishra

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