The Director Generals of Police (DGPs) of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana have issued directions to all police stations in their respective states to register an FIR irrespective of jurisdiction when a person lodges a complaint. The development comes in the backdrop of the horrific rape and murder of a veterinary doctor in Hyderabad.
In a circular issued on December 2 evening, Andhra Pradesh DGP Gautam Sawang stated, “It is observed that when the public are approaching the police stations for registration of their cases often they are being directed to go to the other police station on point of territorial jurisdiction which is not correct.”
Known as “Zero FIR’’, it is a complaint that can be registered by any police station when a complainant approaches them regarding a cognisable offence. Following the registration of the complaint, the officials have to inform their counterparts in the appropriate police station while initiating action themselves.
The circular also states that failure to comply with the direction of registration of FIR and a receipt of information about cognizable offence may invite prosecution of the police officer under section 166-A of IPC and it may also invite departmental action against them.
“I have issued directions to all police stations to never turn away a complainant. If any member of public approaches a police station, the police officer there has to register a Zero FIR and not only transfer it to the respective police station but also alert them and initiate action,” DGP Sawang said.
Telangana DGP M Mahender Reddy also issued a similar circular directing all police stations not to turn away any complainant on the basis of jurisdiction. “We have issued a stern warning to all police stations not to turn away any complainant. The SHO has to note down the complaint and forward to the PS concerned and alert them,’’ DGP Reddy said.
This decision by the states come after a 27-year-old veterinary doctor was raped and her body set on fire by four persons in Shamshabad area on the outskirts of Hyderabad on the night of November 27.
The incident led to a furore and Cyberabad Police has faced flak for making the family members of the victim run around over jurisdiction. Family members of the doctor have alleged that had the cops took note of their complaint and taken action immediately, she might have been saved.