What if the police officer refused to register FIR?

Police station

First Information Report (FIR) is a written document prepared by the police when a cognizable offence is committed and someone reports it. Generally, the victim of such cognizable offence reports it to the police. FIR can be logged in any form like oral written or even through telephone. 

Anyone who knows about the commission of a cognizable offence can file an FIR. Only the victim of the crime doesn’t need to file an FIR. A police officer who comes to know about a cognizable offence can file an FIR himself/herself. You can file an FIR if:

  • You are the person against whom the offence has been committed
  • You know yourself about an offence which has been committed
  • You have seen the offence being committed.

Police may not investigate the matter if it is not serious or is trivial. FIR consists of:

  • your name, contact, address 
  •  date, time and location where the incident took place
  • Facts of the case
  • Witness etc

Section 154(3) of the Code of Criminal Procedure states that: Any person aggrieved by a refusal on the part of an officer in charge of a police station to record the information referred to in subsection (1) may send the substance of such information, in writing and by post, to the Superintendent of Police concerned who, if satisfied that such information discloses the commission of a cognizable offence, shall either investigate the case himself or direct an investigation to be made by any police officer subordinate to him, in the manner provided by this Code, and such officer shall have all the powers of an officer in charge of the police station concerning that offence.

If police refused to lodge FIR than you can:

  • Approach Superintendent of Police

If the police officer to whom you went to report the incident refuses to lodge FIR than you can directly approach the superintendent of Police. You can write your complaint to a senior officer of the police, Commissioner of Police or Superintendent of Police. Also, you can send a copy of the same to the High Court of that state after it is analyzed by mentioned officers. 

If Superintendent finds offence cognizable than he can directly look into the matter or can order to file the FIR. 

  • Complaint to Judicial Magistrate

Even if after the person complains to the superintendent of police no action has been taken then he is legally entitled to a complaint it to Judicial Magistrate. An informant may also send an application to the judicial magistrate or metropolitan magistrate from sub-section (3) of section 156 read with section 190 of the criminal procedure code, 1973 telling that police to register an FIR, investigate the case, and file the report before him. 

  • Writ Petition

If any officer in charge refuses to file the FIR then the person can directly file a writ petition in High Court damages or compensation for the frustration and the deprivation of life and liberty under article 21 of the Indian constitution or can writ of mandamus against the police officer.

  • Human Rights Commission

If a person wants to file an FIR and police officer refuses to do such than he can go to the State Human Rights Commission or the National Human Rights Commission.  

Under section 166A(c), if the Public servant concerned fails to record any information given to him under sub-section (1) of section 154 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, concerning cognizable offence punishable under section 326A, section 326B, section 354, section 354B, section 370, section 370A, section 376, section 376A, section 376B, section 376C, section 376D, section 376E or section 509 of the Indian Penal Code, he is punishable with rigorous imprisonment for a term which shall not be less than six months but which may extend to two years, and shall also be liable to fine.

Hence, you have the right to file an FIR and if police officer refuses so you have remedies which are mentioned above. 


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