MHA mulls treating all complaints received by police as FIRs

Last Updated: Monday, December 28, 2009 - 20:59

New Delhi: In a fallout of the Ruchika
molestation case, all complaints received at police stations
are to be treated as FIRs while a move is afoot for automatic
revoking of police and gallantry medals awarded to convicted
officers.

The case of molestation of 14-year-old Ruchika Girhotra
who committed suicide three years after the incident in 1990
sparked a national outrage after the accused ex-Haryana DGP
S P S Rathore got away with a lighter six-month jail sentence.

The Home Ministry has decided to issue a circular to the
state governments asking them to ensure that all complaints
received at police stations are treated as FIRs.

The circular, to be issued next week, will direct state
governments and Union Territories to ensure free and total
registration of all complaints as FIRs, sources in the
Home Ministry said on Monday.

The move came following repeated complaints from public
that police often adopted dilly-dallying tactics and showed
reluctance to register a FIR immediately on a complaint.

But it assumed urgency following allegations by Ruchika`s
family that when they lodged a complaint against Rathore in
the molestation case, police initially refused to register an
FIR. The police also refused to register a case when
Ruchika`s brother was harassed by police on false charges, it
was alleged.

The government, in the proposed amendment to the CrPC,
wants to make it mandatory for Station House Officer to give
reasons for registration of a case as well as non-registration
of case after receiving a complaint.

Top government sources said the rules on stripping
convicted officers of their medals are likely to be
formalised when a high-powered award committee headed by
Union Home Secretary G K Pillai meets here on January 4.

"In our opinion, any IPS officer convicted by a court
should be stripped of his medal. The award committee will look
into all relevant issues and take a decision," a Home Ministry
source said.

The Home Ministry has already taken steps to withdraw
the police medal given to Rathore in 1985.

Ruchika`s family has also levelled allegations of
abetment to suicide against Rathore.

Haryana IPS officer R K Sharma, sentenced to life in
prison in journalist Shivani Bhatnagar murder case, still has
a President`s police medal.

Elaborating on the FIR issue, an official said the
objective of the circular to the states is to ensure that even
if a complaint is false, police have to investigate it after
registering the FIR.

"If the complaint is found to be false, police can
always drop the FIR. But that should not be a deterrent in
registering genuine complaints as FIR," the official added.

PTI



First Published: Monday, December 28, 2009 - 20:59

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