Jharkhand High Court: Magistrate Lacks Authority for Re-Investigation in Cases Originating from Police Reports


LI Network

Published on: December 31, 2023 at 13:21 IST

The Jharkhand High Court affirmed that a Magistrate lacks authority to mandate re-investigation in a case initiated based on a police report. This decision arose from a criminal petition aiming to annul a Special Judge’s order, issuing a non-bailable warrant against an individual.

Citing the Vinubhai Haribhai Malaviya and Others v. State of Gujarat and Another (2019), Justice Sanjay Kumar Dwivedi emphasized that a Magistrate cannot direct re-investigation in a case initiated via a police report.

The Judge highlighted a lack of judicial application in the endorsement on the investigating agency’s letter that directed the non-bailable warrant.

The Court underscored that while Section 173(8) of the Criminal Procedure Code allows for continued investigation, it specifically prohibits re-investigation.

Advocate Saurabh Shekhar represented the petitioner, and Spl. PP Priya Shrestha appeared for the State in the proceedings.

The Special Judge had issued the warrant based on a petition accompanying the Memo of Evidence by the Police Inspector, despite previous exoneration by the Deputy Superintendent in the final form submitted earlier.

The petitioner sought to quash the ongoing criminal proceedings pending before the Special Judge, which had also implicated seven other accused individuals.

The High Court emphasized the significance of not infringing upon an individual’s liberty without proper cause and specified that the parameters for such orders were not adhered to in this case.

Consequently, the High Court granted the petition, directing the Special Judge to proceed with the trial against the remaining accused individuals but not against the petitioner.

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