Hyderabad: The Hyderabad High Court has held that visiting the scene of offence prior to registration of an FIR and doing preliminary work relating to a cognizable offence prior to registration of FIR cannot be termed as investigation and cannot be ground to plead for quashing of criminal charges.
A division bench comprising Justice Suresh Kumar Kait and Justice U. Durga Prasad Rao while confirming life sentence awarded by VI Additional District and Sessions Judge, Siddipet to one M. Srinivas, convicted of killing his wife, made it clear that it would not be always possible for the police to take up investigation only after registering the FIR. The bench ruled that registration of FIR at a later stage cannot be faulted.
Srinivas had appealed against his conviction by the trial court. The prosecution charged him of killing his wife on September 12, 2008 on suspicion of her having an extra marital affair and also refusal of her parents to give additional dowry. The trial court found him guilty of killing of his wife and dowry harassment.
Counsel for the appellant contended that the police commenced its investigation without registering a FIR soon after receiving information of the offence.
Counsel argued that the act of the police in violation to the procedure contemplated under Section 162 Cr PC and the relevant Section mandates the police to register FIR soon after receiving information and then proceed for further investigation.
He said that in this case, most of the investigation such as inspection of scene of offence, recovery of the body, and examination of the main witnesses and so on were completed prior to registration of the FIR. He said that the police followed ‘reverse procedure’ in the case, and that this was done to manipulate the FIR to suit their case.
The public prosecutor contended that the prosecution has proved the case by producing cogent evidence of witnesses with regard to the strained relations between the deceased and appellant.
While relying on a Supreme Court judgment in the case of Ramsingh Bavaji Jadeja versus State of Gujarat, the bench held that investigation prior to registration of FIR was not hit by Section 162 Cr PC.