First Information Report (FIR) is an essential document when reporting a criminal offence to the police. Criminal law occupies a major role among the law enforcement agencies and the social control. This law quite an effective tool, we use to protect ourselves against anti-social behavior. Court and criminal procedures are an integral part of our legal system, its effectiveness depends on the proper implementation of the law. Criminal law is also one of the most faithful reflections of the fundamental values of our society.
What is FIR?
FIR is a legal document that builds the trust in our criminal procedures. The power of FIR in enhancing transparency makes it a valuable legal instrument for our society.
FIR can be filed only for cognizable offences, including murder, rape, kidnapping, theft, robbery, fraud, and other such.
Why is FIR important?
FIR constitutes the “foundation” of making a legal case. The Station House Officer (SHO) of a police station is legally required to register an FIR on hearing the complaint of an aggrieved person or victim.A gist of the crime is usually recorded in the FIR along with the process of investigation. FIR sets the process of criminal justice in motion and necessitates an investigation. The following items constitute an FIR:
- Personal details of the complainant/ informant
- Place of Occurrence
- Date and Hour of Occurrence
- Description of the accused
- Details of witnesses
FIR is a public document and a certified copy of which, is provided to the complainant. But, in most cases a copy of the FIR recorded soon after the grievance, is given to the aggrieved.
This initial version of FIR may not have the details on the investigation process and the particulars on the evidence collected by the police, one then needs to follow up with the police station and/or the SHO to obtain the final copy of the FIR, which is not that easy. With the in-flow of criminal offences, police officers are kept busy and they do not encourage complainants coming in all the time to know the status of their filed FIR.
Status of FIR using RTI:
Right To Information (RTI) application is the tool for obtaining the status of FIR, which can be filed after few months of the crime. This can be filed to be informed about the investigation carried out by the police and helps in knowing whether the police are on the right track with the investigation, making them liable for any delay in the investigation. This way the applicant can be satisfied upon his/her involvement in the case. All you need to have to file an RTI Application for details on your FIR are:
- FIR number,
- Name of the police station and
- The district under which it falls.
Take for example a case of robbery, an RTI Application can actually help the aggrieved person possibly get back a portion of her valuables if the prompt investigation is successful to any extent.
Apart from this, RTI also helps in knowing the number of cases filed in each station and the category of the offence for various other purposes.
If you have already filed your RTI Application, you can track the status and progress of your application on our site.