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Zero FIR

ZERO FIR: Zero FIR (Zero First Information Report) means that a First Information Report (FIR) can be registered in any Police Station, on receipt of complaint, irrespective of its territorial jurisdiction and the same can be transferred later to the appropriate Police Station After collection of evidences by Police.(Appropriate police station is one within whose local jurisdiction the offence actually taken place)

For example an offence of Murder took place at some area which comes under the jurisdiction of Police Station PUNE. The person who saw the dead body at BOMBAY approached the nearest Police Station at BOMBAY and informed the same. In such a situation police incharge of BOMBAY police Station cannot excuse themselves saying that the case does not fall within their jurisdiction and it falls within the jurisdiction of PUNE Police Station. They should take immediate action (like collecting samples, getting information from eye witnesses, etc.). Later the case will be transferred to Police Station PUNE police Station.

ZERO FIR can be filed at any police station – even if you are far off from the place of incident and you may/ may not be sure of the correct jurisdiction? Place where the offence actually taken place? There are provisions to do so and the same can be transferred to the appropriate police station limits when these are available. Such an FIR is called the Zero FIR!

However, there are chances that the police station you visit may plead unawareness of such a concept. You should still report an FIR for the record the evidences need to be collected in very short span like blood samples, port mortam Report and statement of eye witnesses etc. are required to be collected immediately otherwise it may gets destroyed or tampered by Offenders.

Why is Zero FIR needed?

Incidents like accident, murder and rape require immediate action from the concerned authorities and rush to take samples, getting information from eye witnesses and getting circumstantial details. A Zero FIR helps to take note of this initial action regardless of trying to figure out in which limits or territorial jurisdiction the crime / offence took place.

Legal provisions for Zero FIR

There is no explicit provision in the Code of Criminal Procedure to accommodate Zero FIR.

However, Section 460 of the Code talks about ‘Irregularities which do not vitiate proceedings’, Clause (e) of the section states that If any Magistrate is not empowered by law to take cognizance of an offence under clause (a) or clause (b) of sub- section (1) of section 190 and takes a cognizance of the offence irrespective of this, such a proceeding shall not be set aside merely on the ground that the Magistrate did not have jurisdiction to entertain the same.

Under clause (c) of section 166A [Criminal Law (Amendment) Act, 2018.] of IPC, if any public servant fails to record any information given to him under sub-section (1) of section 154 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, in relation to cognizable offence … shall be punished 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.

Case Laws

  • Satvinder Kaur vs Govt. of NCT of Delhi on 5/10/1999 (AIR 1999, 1031)
  • Ramesh Kumari vs Govt. of NCT Delhi on 21/2/2006.

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