INTRODUCTION To understand the Role of Judicial officer in Criminal Investigation
The role Of the Judicial Officer In Criminal Investigation is very important to understand and the Role Of the Judicial Officer In Criminal Investigation is very important for the investigation purpose. The criminal justice system plays one the important roles in maintaining law and order in society.
There are mainly three elements of the criminal justice system in India that are investigation, inquiry, and trial. The procedure which is followed in the investigation, inquiry, and trial is laid down in The Criminal Procedure Code, 1973. In India, there are mainly two statutes that deal with the criminal law that is the Criminal procedure code, 1973, and the Indian Penal code, 1860.
The first step of any criminal case is the investigation. An investigation is defined under Section 2(h)of the Code of Criminal procedure, 1973. An investigation is the primary function of the concern for every criminal case. It helps the judiciary to arrive at a conclusion by providing relevant information and evidence to the court. Executives are mainly responsible for the investigation and the judiciary is entrusted with the responsibility of inquiry and trial.
The magistrate’s main objective is to ensure the due process of law in every stage of the investigation. It is important because the proceedings of a criminal case can be hampered, it depends on the manner in which the investigation was done. Sometimes because of the lack of evidence, investigation officers use methods in order to extract the information which is not permitted by the law.
The conclusion of the court mainly depends on the evidence and information collected in the process of investigation. During the whole process, the Magistrate ensures the check and balance of the criminal justice system.
CLASSIFICATION OF MAGISTRATE
To understand the Role Of the Judicial Officer In Criminal Investigation it is also important to study the classification of a magistrate. Let us see it in detail. There are 4 main classifications of the Criminal courts.
1. Court of Session
2. Judicial Magistrate of First Class.
3. Judicial Magistrate of Second Class.
4. Executive Magistrate
In India, criminal justice is administered through magistrate courts and sessions courts. Under Section 6 of the Code of Criminal Procedure of 1973, there are mainly four classes of criminal courts that are the court of session, judicial magistrate of the first class, judicial magistrate of the second class, and executive magistrates. The court of session is established for every session division by the state government.
The judge who presides every session of court is appointed by the high court. When there is no additional or assistant session judge, in that case, the chief judicial magistrate may entertain any urgent application which comes before the court. The court of the session has the power to give capital punishment under Section 366 of the code of criminal procedure.
STAGE – I
Criminal justice administration is started soon after the recording of information about the offence. If given orally to the officer, it shall be converted into writing by the officer as per Section 154 of Crpc. Under Section 156 of CrPc, a police officer may investigate any cognizable cases without the order of a magistrate. If the officer in charge has any reason to suspect the commission of an offence, they may investigate.
After this officer in charge shall be sent the same report to a magistrate. It was mandated under Section 157 that a copy of the FIR be sent to the magistrate as soon as possible. Delhi high court rules (vol II, chapter II, part A, rule 4) laid down that, in case of a heinous case like murder, FIR should be sent to the magistrate immediately in his court during court hours and at his residence thereafter, after this magistrate require to make a note regarding date/time and place of receipt on the report which was received by him.
STAGE – II
Personal liberty is a fundamental right under Article 21 of the constitution, and sometimes arrest may violate the constitutional rights of a person. A due process of arrest should be non-arbitrary, just, and reasonable and every arrest should be made for justifiable reasons. The magistrate examined the reason for the arrest which was recorded by the police officer.
After examining the reasons for arrest, the next step is to identify whether the grounds are available for the detention of the accused, for bail, or for discharge. Detention of a person can have serious consequences on the constitutional level as well as at the social level. It may affect the personal liberty and freedom of citizens. Under Section 167 of CrPc, the magistrate can authorize detention after examining whether the arrest is made in accordance with the law and a person’s constitutional rights were given to him or not. If the arrest is not in accordance with Section 41 of the CrPc, then the magistrate can not authorize detention.
In the case of Arnesh Kumar v. The State of Bihar, Supreme Court held that, before authorization of detention, a magistrate will record its own satisfaction, may, in brief, it is important that the magistrate mentioned its own satisfaction on its order. It can not be based on the ipse dixit of the police. If the magistrate finds that the arrest made by the police officer is not justifiable then the magistrate can disallow police custody and release the person on bail or under the special order under Section 59 of CrPc.
STAGE – II
One of the important parts of the investigation is the recording of the statement. Section 164 of the CrPc allows the recording of the testimony of a witness during an investigation before the magistrate. Section 164 also permits the recording of statements of both witnesses and confessions by the magistrate and the statement of witnesses is recorded on oath.
Section 157 of the evidence act allows the statement recorded under section 164 of CrPc can be used for corroboration of the witness testimony at trial. In the case of a test identification parade, the magistrate must ensure that the accused is produced before him with a covered face and all the identity must not be disclosed to the witness. Before the conduct of the test identification parade, the consent of the accused is necessary after consultation with his lawyer.
The magistrate must also ensure that the photograph of the accused has not been shown to the witness before the test identification parade because it may influence the result of the test information parade. In cases of handwriting/signature specimen or conduct of narco-analyzing is obtained for the investigation, the magistrate should ensure the law. Representation and informed consent of the accused.
STAGE – IV
Supreme court in the case of Sakiri Vasu v. the State of U.P held that Section 156 of Crpc empowers a magistrate to check on the police while performing duties if the magistrate is not satisfied with the investigation, he can also issue a direction to reinvestigation and he also has the power to monitor the same. Court also held that under Section 156 the power to order a further investigation of the magistrate is an independent power and does not affect the powers of the investigation officer.
It was held in the case of the State of Bihar v. A.C. Saldana that the magistrate has the power to order the re-opening of the investigation even after the police submits the final report. For the purpose of protecting the integrity of prosecution, it is important to monitor the investigation by the magistrates.
STAGE – V
The result is obtained after the investigation conducted by the police, the court is not bound to accept that conclusion. In the case of Gangadhar Janardan Mhatre v. State of Maharashtra supreme court held that in cases in which police investigation concluded that there is no case against the accused, the informant is entitled to notice and an opportunity to be heard before the court at the time of consideration of the report.
Under Section 173 of CrPc, the option of ordering a further investigation by a magistrate is available but this section does not lay down the ground on which the power is exercised by the magistrate. In the case of Kashmeri Devi v. Delhi administration, the Supreme court held that further investigation can be ordered when the magistrate is of the opinion that police action is not neutral or they provide a shield to the culprits.
Now the concept of the Role Of a Judicial Officer In Criminal investigation must have been clear in your mind.