No permission required for further investigation by police: SC

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New Delhi, Dec 16 (UNI) The Supreme Court has ruled that police need not seek prior permission of the court for carrying out further investigation in a case but it is a must during reinvestigation.

A bench comprising Justices S B Sinha and Lokeshwar Singh Panta while allowing the appeal of the state of Andhra Pradesh said, ''indisputably, the law doesn't mandate taking of prior permission from the magistrate for further investigation. Carrying out of a further investigation even after filing of the chargesheet is a statutory right of the police. A distinction also exists between further investigation and reinvestigation. Whereas reinvestigation without prior permission is necessarily forbidden, further investigation is not.'' The ruling was handed down by the apex court on an appeal filed by the state of Andhra Pradesh against the state High court judgment dated October 3, 2002 allowing the criminal revision of A S Peter challenging further investigation by CID without prior permission of the court after filing of the chargesheet.

Peter was carrying on business in red sanders hardwood and his godown in Chittoor district of AP caught fire.

He filed a claim as his godown was insured.

The concert forest officers made a complaint against him that he had made a false declaration regarding the stock in the godown and has inflated the same in order to make unlawful gain.

After investigation a chargesheet was filed for offenses under Section 199, 200 of IPC.

Some allegations were made against the local police that investigation was not fair. ADG entrusted further investigation in the case to CID on November 5, 1997.

The second chargesheet filed in the court of Tirupati was transfered to the designated court at Chittoor.

Further investigation was challenged on the ground that it was illegal as no prior permission of the court was obtained for further investigation.

The apex court concluded by saying, ''it is not correct to contend that the investigation was taken up by a different agency. the CID is a part of the investigating authorities of the state.'' ''A further investigation was directed by the ADG of police.

Section 36 of the CrPC empowers a police officer, superior in rank to an officer incharge of a police station , to exercise the same powers throughout the local area to which they are appointed, as may be exercised by such officers with in the limits of his station,'' the court said.

''It was therefore permissible for the higher authoritry to carry out or direct further investigation in the matter,'' the court added.

The apex court vide its judgment dated December 13 set aside the impugned judgment of the High Court.

UNI

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