Legal Remedy & Complaints Against Police- State Police Complaint Authority.

Legal Remedy & Complaints Against Police- State Police Complaint Authority-The Police are one of the most important law enforcing agency and an institution to protect the rights of citizens enshrined in the Constitution of India. However unfettered & uncontrolled powers vested to the police force has resulted mostly into the incidents of brutal misuse of their powers, inefficiency & corruption since past many decades.

General Fear & Mistrust among the Common People-

The general fear & mistrust among the common people against the police force can be seen in all aspects of social life of our country. The traditional ignorance & gross negligence of the police force in even registration of FIR (not to speak of further investigation & strict actions against the culprit) in matters involving happening of serious offences most of which are cognizable offences has resulted further into tendency of the common people not knocking the doors of the police stations which has resulted into one of the worst criminal justice system.

Inadequate Support From the Government Cannot become ground for Corruption-

We make it clear that we are aware about the fact that there is tremendous pressure upon the police force from the politicians and from some white collared influential criminal classes of our society and also that the police officers get very low scale salary compared to average global pay scales.

Even the glimpse of the video news related to the inhuman, small and damaged condition of the government allotted houses of the police officers all over the country make the picture very clear about the poor financial support they receive from the government which is further worsened by the low manpower and heavy workload upon the police officers. However we also firmly believe that the poor conditions at the workplace or deliberate attempt of the government to make the police force weak & less financially independent cannot become the ground or reason to justify their inefficiency or the corruption of the force at any cost and in whatsoever manner.

‘Delay Tactics’ by the Government of India to solve police inefficiency & corruption-

That before the Supreme Court of India intervened on 22 September 2006, prior to that the government of India were playing only a delay tactics to solve this menace of police inefficiency & corruption. Instead Since 1977 to 2006 following committees were appointed which kept issuing recommendations but the government did not take any concrete action against such recommendations at all. The delay tactics can be seen by the government with appointment of following committees, Commissions and their recommendations time to time-

  1. National Police Commission (1977-81),
  2. National Human Rights Commissions
  3.  Law Commissions
  4. Ribeiro Committee
  5. Padmanabhaiah Committee and
  6. Malimath Committee on Reforms of Criminal Justice System etc.

Even after this, the government again appointed the Soli Sorabjee committee in the year 2005 to draft the Police Act.

The Supreme Court Intervenes-Orders the Setting Up of ‘State & District level Police Complaints Authority’ all over the Country-

Legal Remedy & Complaints Against Police- State Police Complaint Authority.

While the government was playing the delay tactics, the few retired top police officers & NGO had filed the writ petition before the Supreme Court of India in the year 1996. However owing to indifference from the government & other complications the petition was pending before the court till the year 2006. After taking the cognizance of overall situation in this matter & ‘Distress Call’ situation mentioned by such committees to reform the inefficient police system, the Supreme Court of India, in Prakash Singh & Ors vs Union Of India, on 22 September, 2006 (Writ Petition No.310/2016) under Article 32 of the Constitution of India read with Article 142 of the Constitution issued 7 directions to achieve the complete justice to the central as well the state governments. The Supreme Court of India also mentioned that such directions are further mandatory under Article 144 of the Constitution of India over all the authorities of the country.

The salient features of these 7 directions are as follows-

  • Setting up of the Police Complaints Authority- To look into complaints against police officers. It declares there shall be a Police Complaints Authority at the District Level to look into complaints against police officers of and up to the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police. Similarly, there should be another Police Complaints Authority at the State Level to look into complaints against officers of the rank of Superintendent of Police and above. The authorities above mentioned shall be headed by the Rtd.District Court & Rtd.High Court judges at the district & state levels respectively. 
  • Separation of the Investigation i.e. ‘investigation police’ shall be separated from the ‘law and order’ police.
  • Establishment of State Security Commission- To ensure that the State Government does not exercise unwarranted influence or pressure on the State police and for laying down the broad policy guidelines so that the State police always acts according to the laws of the land and the Constitution of the country.
  • Formation of Establishment Boards- For the purpose of transfer, promotions etc. The State Government may interfere with decision of the Board in exceptional cases only after recording its reasons.

The Supreme Court of India also directed that the aforesaid directions shall be complied with by the Central Government, State Governments or Union Territories, as the case may be, on or before 31st December, 2006 so that the bodies aforenoted became operational on the onset of the new year.

The judgement of the Supreme Court of India above mentioned can be viewed & downloaded from the link given below-

Click To Download-Prakash Singh & Ors vs Union Of India on 22 September, 2006

Formation of the State Police Complaint Authority With Tremendous Delay-

Though the Supreme Court of India had directed the Central, State & Union Territory governments to comply the directions above given by 31st December 2006 many states committed the contempt of the order of the Supreme Court of India e.g. one of the most progressive state of our country State of Maharashtra formed State Police Complaints Authority only in year 2015 and that too fearing the contempt petition filed before the court.

Legal Remedy & Complaints Against Police- State Police Complaint Authority.

Legal Remedy & Complaints Against Police- State Police Complaint Authority With e.g of Maharashtra State Police Complaints Authority-

As above mentioned it is mandatory upon the governments to establish the Police Complaint Authority in the states. Accordingly the reader should know that they can find the State Police Complaints Authorities in their respective States or Union Territories.

To explain how to file complaint to the State Police Complaints Authority we would take the example of the State of Maharashtra as follows- However even the progressive state like State of Maharashtra appointed the State Police Complaints Authority only in the year 2015 i.e. 9 years after the mandatory direction of the Supreme Court and that too fearing the contempt petition and action by the court. The State of Maharashtra enacted the act in the year of 2014 which is called as The Maharashtra Police (Amendment & Continuance) Act, 2014.

The copy of the Maharashtra Police (Amendment & Continuance) Act, 2014 can be viewed and downloaded from the link given below-

Click to Download- Maharashtra Police (Amendment & Continuance) Act 2014

The salient features of this act is as follows-

  • It makes the provision for formation of the State Security Commission- To ensure that the State Government does not exercise unwarranted influence or pressure on the State police and for laying down the broad policy guidelines so that the State police always acts according to the laws of the land and the Constitution of the country.
  • Formation of Establishment Boards- For the purpose of transfer, promotions etc. The State Government may interfere with decision of the Board in exceptional cases only after recording its reasons.
  • Most Important- Section 22P- Formation of the State Police Complaints Authority.

Section Wise Salient Features of the Maharashtra Police (Amendment & Continuance) Act, 2014-

The salient features of the Maharashtra Police (Amendment & Continuance) Act, 2014 are as follows-

Section 22Q (1)(a)-

declares that The Maharashtra State Police Complaints Authority shall have the power to inquire suo motu or on complaint form any person about death in police custody, grievous hurt, rape or attempt to commit rape, arrest or detention without following prescribed procedure, corruption, extortion, land or house grabbing or any other matter involving serious matter of violations of provision of any law or abuse of lawful authority.

S.22Q(7)-Every Proceeding to Be ‘Judicial Proceeding’-

Every proceeding before the The State Police Complaints Authority has been declared to be judicial proceeding within meaning of Sections 193 & 228 of the Indian Penal Code and it has been vested powers of Civil Court too.

Section 22R (Most Important)-

The Maharashtra State Police Complaints Authority after completing the inquiry shall take following steps-

S.22R (1)-  Submit the report to the State Government,

S.22R (2)- The State government after the receipt of the report may accept or reject only in exceptional circumstances and that too with reasoned order.

S.22R (b) State Government shall treat the report as preliminary report for the purpose of institution of proceedings against delinquent officer.

S.22R (c)- If the report disclosed prima facie case of commission of cognizable offence, the State Government shall forward the same to the concerned police station and thereupon the same may be recorded as the First Information Report under S.154 of Code of Criminal Procedure 1973.

S.22(S) makes the formation of the same authority at the district level to be called as Division Level Police Complaints Authority.

Prosecution for the False Complaint against Honest & Sincere Police Officer-

As a preventive measure against the possible abuse of these provisions against the honest police officers, S.22(T) makes provision of punishment of 2 years of imprisonment and for the false complaint related to offence punishable with death, life imprisonment or punishment of imprisonment of 7 years, then such a frivolous complainant shall be punishable with imprisonment up to 7 years. In addition to this, person making false and frivolous complaints shall also be liable to pay the concerned police officer legal expenses and compensation which State Police Complaints Authority may decide.

The Address of the Maharashtra State Complaints Police Authority-

Maharashtra State Complaints Police Authority
Address-

Cooperage Telephone Exchange, 4th Floor, Maharshi Karve Road, Nariman Point, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400 021,
Email-mahaspca@gmail.com.

Thus most people wrongly think that the only legal remedy against the corrupt and inefficient police officer is to approach the court by hiring lawyer only. However people are unaware about such strong Supreme Court judgement and also the existence of the laws & authorities in their respective states like State of Maharashtra, above mentioned.

How to File Case in Person Without Hiring a Lawyer before such Commissions or Courts-

Though i always suggest and insist to appoint a lawyer for fighting the legal battles, yet we have also published an article for the people who cant hire or appoint lawyers for their legal battles for inevitable reasons. The link of the article is as follows-

Read-How to File Case Without Lawyer or In Person with Sample Draft.

Options of other Commissions-

It is pertinent to note that there are many other options available against the grievances against the inefficient & corrupt police officers like State or National Human Right Commissions, Lokayukt Authority etc. However such Commissions and Authorities are generally located in the capital of the State causing hardship for common people especially poor complainants who cannot afford the travel and other expenses and hence they can always approach the Division Level Police Complaints Authority which are located at the district levels.

People Should Approach such Authorities & Commissions-

The organization has observed that many people neither approach courts or such authorities and commissions and keep approaching the media only or post their angry opinions in the social media platforms for the years. It is true that many commissions now days are not working efficiently too like we observed about the Maharashtra State Commission for Protection of Child Rights recently and we have also posted the articles about the same as follows-

Read-Maharashtra State Commission for Protection of Child Rights’ Inaction Exposed.

However after we published this article first, it was flashed in the top media news channels too, which further resulted in expediting few matters pending before the commission. In brief people should launch public protests, approach media and expose the corrupt officers on the social media platforms too. However if these things do not bear fruit for long time, then they must immediately approach such authorities and commissions without wasting any time.

Don’t forget to like, share this article & also join our movement against the corrupt system on Twitter & Facebook Pages as below

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-Adv.Siddharthshankar Sharma
Founder President-Bharatiya Krantikari Sangathan

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Disclaimer- None of the authors, contributors, administrators, or anyone else connected with this website, in any way whatsoever, can be responsible for your use of the information contained in or linked from these web pages. The visitors are advised to take the opinion of their learned counsels before proceeding & relying upon the information above given before approaching any authority, court or commissions.

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