CrPC Section 210: Complaint Case & Police Investigation – Procedure Explained

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CrPC Section 210: Complaint Case & Police Investigation – Procedure Explained

1. State the code

CrPC Section 210 deals with the procedure to be followed when a complaint is filed before a Magistrate, who then directs the police to investigate the matter.

2. Explain it

This section outlines the process where a private individual can initiate a criminal investigation. It allows a Magistrate to direct the police to investigate a case based on a complaint filed by a person who alleges that a cognizable offense has been committed. This is distinct from a First Information Report (FIR), which is filed directly with the police.

Here’s a breakdown of the process:

  • Complaint Filing: A person can file a written complaint with the Magistrate alleging a cognizable offense. The complaint must contain essential details like the alleged crime, the accused person, and the evidence available.
  • Magistrate’s Examination: The Magistrate examines the complaint to determine if it discloses a cognizable offense. If satisfied, the Magistrate will issue an order directing the police to investigate the matter.
  • Police Investigation: The police then proceed with the investigation as per the Magistrate’s order. They will collect evidence, record statements, and take necessary action based on their findings.

3. Illustrate it

Imagine someone accuses their neighbor of stealing their valuable antique watch. The neighbor denies the allegation, and the accuser files a complaint with the Magistrate, alleging theft (a cognizable offense). The Magistrate, after examining the complaint, directs the police to investigate the matter. The police will then interview both parties, gather evidence from the scene, and ultimately decide whether to arrest the accused or not.

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4. Common Questions and Answers:

  • Q: What is a cognizable offense?
    A: A cognizable offense is a crime where the police have the authority to arrest a suspect without a warrant. Examples include theft, murder, and assault.
  • Q: What if the Magistrate dismisses the complaint?
    A: If the Magistrate finds the complaint insufficient or doesn’t disclose a cognizable offense, they can dismiss it. The complainant can then approach a higher court for redress.
  • Q: What is the difference between a complaint and an FIR?
    A: An FIR is directly filed with the police, whereas a complaint is filed with the Magistrate, who then directs the police to investigate.
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