Shimla: Copies of FIRs (first information reports) should be uploaded on the police website within a day of filing of the case, the Himachal Pradesh High Court has directed the state government.
"The direction for uploading the FIR on the (police) website shall be given effect from Jan 26, 2015," Justice Tarlok Singh Chauhan said in an order made available to the media Monday.
The court was hearing a petition seeking quashing of an FIR registered on charges of criminal trespass and wrongful restraint under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code in Shimla Nov 29.
However, the copy of the FIR has not been placed on record by the petitioner.
Asked why, the petitioner said he was 70 years old and retired as assistant commissioner from the excise and taxation department.
Being a respectable person, he said he was scared to go to the police station to get a copy of the FIR because he may be arrested since the complainant happens to be none other than the police superintendent in Shimla.
He said he applied for the FIR copy Dec 4 under the Right to Information Act but the copy has not been made available because as per the usual practice, the outer limit of 30 days for supplying information is always considered to be the inner limit.
"Being a public document, the FIR cannot be withheld from public domain and would not only lend credence but would also bring transparency in the working of the police department in case the same is put in public domain," said Justice Chauhan.
Unless sensitive in nature, a copy of an FIR should be uploaded on the police website within a day of the filing of a complaint.
The court said the decision not to upload the copy of the FIR on the website shall not be taken by an officer below the rank of deputy superintendent of police and that too by way of a speaking order.
A decision in this regard should be duly communicated to the area magistrate, it said.
The judge asked the chief secretary to file a compliance report in this regard in court on or before Jan 30, 2015, the next date of hearing.