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Episode 14 of 40

Is Filing of Second FIR based on the same Cause of Action Permissible in India?

Duration: 10:56
In the celebrated case of Lalita Kumari v. Govt. of U.P., (2014) 2 SCC 1, following important points were explained: - 1. The First Information Report is in fact the “information” that is received first in point of time, which is either given in writing or is reduced to writing. It is not to be conf
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In the celebrated case of Lalita Kumari v. Govt. of U.P., (2014) 2 SCC 1, following important points were explained: - 1. The First Information Report is in fact the “information” that is received first in point of time, which is either given in writing or is reduced to writing. It is not to be confused with the Case Diary wherein the “substance” of the FIR (First Information Report) and other related documentations, is to be entered in a diary maintained by the Police under Section 44 of the Police Act, 1861 or Section 172 of CrPC or under any other local provision. 2. The registration of FIR is mandatory under Section 154 of the Code, if the information discloses commission of a cognizable offence and no preliminary inquiry is permissible in such a situation. 3. Every information received relating to commission of a non-cognizable offence also has to be registered under Section 155 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973. Before adverting any further, let us peruse Section 300 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, provides as follows: - “300. Person once convicted or acquitted not to be tried for same offence.—(1) A person who has once been tried by a court of competent jurisdiction for an offence and convicted or acquitted of such offence shall, while such conviction or acquittal remains in force, not be liable to be tried again for the same offence, nor on the same facts for any other offence for which a different charge from the one made against him might have been made under sub-section (1) of Section 221, or for which he might have been convicted under sub-section (2) thereof.” Important Case Laws Amitbhai Anilchandra Shah v. CBI, (2013) 6 SCC 348 – In this case, it was observed that “if an offence forming part of the second FIR arises as a consequence of the offence alleged in the first FIR then offences covered by both the FIRs are the same and, accordingly, the second FIR will be impermissible in law. In other words, the offences covered in both the FIRs shall have to be treated as a part of the first FIR.” Thus, the charge-sheet in pursuance of the second FIR may be treated as a supplementary charge-sheet in the first FIR. Arnab Ranjan Goswami v. Union of India and Others, 2020 SCC OnLine 462 – It was held that successive FIRs/complaints founded on the same cause of action are not maintainable since the investigation covers within its ambit not just the alleged cognisable offence, but also any other connected offences that may be found to have been committed. It was further held that “subjecting an individual to numerous proceedings arising in different jurisdictions on the basis of the same cause of action cannot be accepted as the least restrictive and effective method of achieving the legitimate state aim in prosecuting crime.” Prem Chand Singh v. State of Uttar Pradesh & Another, (2020) 3 SCC 54 – In case of an acquittal or conviction in the earlier FIR, Section 300 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, would come into play and any subsequent prosecution, if the substratum of the two FIRs is common, would be unsustainable. Babubhai v. State of Gujarat, (2010) 12 SCC 254 – The general rule is that with respect to same cause of action or same facts, subsequent/successive/second FIR is impermissible; however in cases, where “there are rival versions in respect of the same episode, the investigating agency would take the same on two different FIRs and investigation can be carried under both of them by the same investigating agency and thus, filing an FIR pertaining to a counterclaim in respect of the same incident having a different version of events, is permissible.” Suresh v. Mahadevappa Shivappa Danannava & Another, (2005) 3 SCC 670 – Delay or laches in filing of the second FIR is also a relevant factor to be considered. Undue delay or laches makes the second FIR unsustainable. Surender Kaushik v. State of U.P., (2013) 5 SCC 148 – Where there is a counter-FIR or there are rival versions in respect of the same incident that may take different shapes, lodgement of two FIRs is permissible. P. Sreekumar v. State of Kerala, (2018) 4 SCC 579 – When the Second FIR relates to the same incident for which the first FIR was filed but if the second FIR is in the nature of a counter-complaint, then the same is legally maintainable and could be entertained for being tried on its merits. Va
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