Power of Magistrate under Section 190 of Code of Criminal Procedure.




NANDLAL SOMNATH YADAV

Versus

STATE OF GUJARAT

Chapter XII of the Code of Criminal Procedure 1973 deals with information to the police and their powers to investigate. Section 156(1) vests in an officer in charge of Police Station the power to investigate any cognizable case without the order of Magistrate. Section 156(3) authorizes a Magistrate, empowered under section 190, to order an investigation as mentioned in Sec. 156 (1).

The provisions from Section 157 onwards are concerned with the power and procedure for investigation. Section 169 prescribes that if upon an investigation it appears to the officer in charge of the Police Station that there is no sufficient evidence or reasonable ground of suspicion to justify the forwarding of the accused to the Magistrate, such officer shall, if such person is in custody, release him on his executing bond (with or without sureties), to appear if and when required, before a Magistrate empowered to take cognizance of an offence on a police report and to try the accused or commit him for trial.



Section 170 prescribes that if upon investigation it appears to the officer in charge of the Police Station that there is sufficient evidence or reasonable ground of suspicion to justify the forwarding of the accused to the Magistrate, such officer shall forward accused under custody to a Magistrate empowered to take cognizance of an offence on a police report and to try the accused or commit him for trial.

If the offence is bailable the officer shall take security from him for his appearance before such Magistrate on a day fixed and for his attendance from day today before such Magistrate until otherwise directed. Section 173 (1) casts a duty upon the police officer to complete the investigation without unnecessary delay. Section 173 (2) prescribes that as soon as the investigation is completed the officer in charge of police station shall forward to a Magistrate empowered to take cognizance of an offence on a police report, a report in the prescribed form stating the various particulars mentioned in that subsection.

Thus, in my view, the position of law is quite clear. The Magistrate empowered to take cognizance of the offence under Section 190(1) subsection (a) on the basis of the original complaint and proceed to examine upon oath, the complainant and his witnesses under Section 200.

As observed earlier, he may even hold or direct inquiry under Section 202 if it thinks fit. Therefore, he may dismiss the complaint or issue process, as the case mat be.

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