The Procedure of Investigation Under Criminal Procedure Code


An INVESTIGATION is an essential fragment of criminal proceedings. The initial step after an offence is committed or the police receive any such information of the commitment of such crime will be “Investigation.” The reason for exhibiting this process is to distinguish the wrongdoer and continue him for conviction in order to serve him with penalty according to the Criminal Procedure Code. Section 156 of the Code, gives powers to the police to research and examine the commission of the cognizable crimes. In case of Non- Cognizable crimes, the investigating team or the police have no position to examine or search without the warrant and need to acquire a warrant under Section 155 (2) of the Code. Part XII (Sections 154 to 176) of the Criminal Procedure Code manages the information given to police and confers power to examine and search.

Meaning and Definition

The expression ‘investigation’ is mentioned under Section 2(h) of the Code, where it states that-“Investigation includes all the proceedings under this Code for the collection of evidence conducted by a police officer or by any person (other than a Magistrate) who is authorised by a Magistrate in this behalf”.

The investigation of any crime constitutes of-

  • Proceeding to the spot.
  • Ascertainment of facts and circumstances of the case.
  • Discovery and arrest of the suspect.
  • Collection of evidence which may include:
  • Examination of persons concerned and reducing their statement to writing.
  • Search and seizure of places and things respectively considered necessary.
  • Formation of opinion as to whether there is a case for trial, and taking necessary steps accordingly. [1]

The provision of Section 157 of the Code, elaborates the methodology of investigation procedure in criminal proceedings. It needs the receiving of information to the police about the commitment of an offence. Prior to the beginning of the investigation, the police needs to make sure about the specific grounds of the offence informed to be so committed. In that event, if the grounds are visible, the investigation will begin.

Also Read: First Information Report (F.I.R) under CrPC

The distinction among cognizable and non-cognizable offenses

The cognizable offense has been characterized in Section 2(C) of the Cr.P.C, where an official of police can capture without a warrant, i.e. police needn’t bother for a warrant/consent from the Magistrate to search all alone. The offence is a public wrong and is of genuine/heinous nature, where the indictment is done at the state’s discretion. Punishment is given with detainment of 3 years or more and with or without fine. For e.g. – Dowry, Rape, Murder, etc.

Non Cognizable offense has been characterized in Section 2 (l) of the Cr.P.C, where the police can’t capture without warrant and is required for the police to acquire consent from the Magistrate to direct the examination. The offense is less genuine in nature and the indictment is done by the party’s initiatives. Punishment might be given not surpassing 3 years of detainment. For e.g. – Assault, Forgery, Defamation, etc.

Receiving of information by a police official

The Information must be insinuated to the person-in-charge of the police station of the jurisdiction where the wrongdoing was committed. Section 154 of the Cr.P.C discusses that the info so given is of a cognizable offense. The info should be given by the witness to the official and have it recorded as a hard copy by getting it written by the police official. The recorded info in writing must be perused to the witness and be signed by him, which is classified as the “First Information Report”. Further, any info which is given by any lady comparable to any predefined offense, it must be recorded by a lady cop. These days, FIRs can likewise be electronically imparted.

Before the commencement of the investigation, the Station House Officer and the investigating officer had received information from an unknown person about a murder. Thus it marks the initiation of the process of Investigation[2]

After the cop is made aware of the offense, there are two conditions which should be satisfied before the beginning of the Investigation.

  • The main ground being that the official has genuine reason to presume that the cognizable offense is equivalent as said by Section 157(1).
  • The second is that there ought to be adequate grounds present before the police official before going into Investigation.
The intensity of Police to Investigate

Section 156 of the Cr.P.C engages the police official accountable to investigate a case of his jurisdiction without the request for the Magistrate if the offense is of nature cognizable. The official may likewise start an Investigation on the sets of the Magistrate engaged under Section 190.

Also Read: Mischief Under the Indian Penal Code

Cases comprising of both Cognizable and Non-Cognizable Offenses

As indicated by Section 155(4), when at least two offenses are there for a situation, of which in any event one is of cognizable nature, and other of non-cognizable nature, at that point the whole case must be managed as a cognizable case, and the investigating official will have all the authority as he is investigating a cognizable crime.

Method of Investigation

Under Code Section 157, sets out the method of Investigation Procedure to be trailed by the police, for collecting Evidence. The Investigation of an offence cognizable in nature starts when the investigating officer believes that the according to the FIR, the offence so committed is cognizable and it necessitates that immediate sending of the FIR to the Magistrate. The official will at that point continue to face to face on spot investigation of the scene and the facts or will depute one of his subordinate officials for same, and whenever required, measures for the disclosure and capture of the individual will be taken.

At the point when the info so received by the police isn’t of genuine nature, or if no adequate ground exists for entering on an investigation, he will not proceed with the situation, and will also state in its report for not conforming to the prerequisites of this part, and tell the source that he won’t investigate the case or cause further.

He will at this point send this report to the Magistrate to take cognizance of the offense, as empowered under the Code.

Sending of Report to the Magistrate

A report is presented to the Magistrate which is known as the police report. This initial report is sent by the superior official of police, in order to make the Magistrate aware that a specific case is being searched by police. Section 158 of Cr.P.C discusses the provision of sending of the report to the Magistrate. The fundamental target of submitting a report is to empower the Magistrate to control the investigation Procedure and give instructions whenever required under Section 159 of the Code. The instructions were the directions given to the Police Officer for leading the Investigation.

Also Read: Narcoanalysis Tests of Accused – Selvi v. State of Karnataka (2010)

No delay in sending of the Report

The Magistrate should have received the report of the in a reasonable measure of time immediately. If any deferral is being caused in sending the report, it ought to be clarified appropriately referring to the explanations behind the delay.

In Nalli v. State (1993 CriLJ 1409), the Madras High Court had to acquit a person accused of murder on the grounds that an “unexplained” and “inordinate” delay was there in dispatching the first information report to the Magistrate.[3]

The use of the term “forthwith” in Section 157(1) was explained by the Hon’ble Supreme Court in Alla China Apparao v. State of Andhra Pradesh (Appeal (Crl.) 698 of 2000), the expression forthwith would undoubtedly mean within a reasonable time and without unreasonable day.[4]

In Swati Ram v. State of Rajasthan, it was held that mere delay in sending the report does not throw away the prosecution case in its entirety.

Magistrate’s Order for Investigation

The Magistrate, under Section 159, has been engaged, in the event that he feels important, in the wake of getting the report to coordinate the investigation Procedure, or to behave or guide a subordinate Magistrate to hold a “preliminary inquiry”. Under Section 159, the Magistrate is empowered to coordinate an Investigation concerning the case. The Magistrate can likewise dismiss the case (within 15 days) if adequate grounds are absent as mentioned under the code.

However, the Magistrate has not been empowered to stop an investigation, after the commencement of the same. In S.N. Sharma v. Bipen Kumar 1970 AIR 786, it was held by the Supreme Court that the Magistrate has no power to stop the investigation and direct magisterial inquiry.[5]

Also Read: Indra Sawhney vs Union of India – The Mandal Case


The process of Investigation incorporates all the systems which are finished by a police official under the Code for the collection of evidence. The Investigation might be directed by police and not the Magistrate, but the Magistrate can likewise approve some other individual to direct the investigation for his benefit.

At various phases of an Investigation Procedure, various reports are to be put together by the police to the Magistrate. These reports are:

  • Section 157 of the Cr.P.C requires the police in-charge to present a report to the Magistrate, called an initial report.
  • Section 168 of the Cr.P.C requires a subordinate official to present a report to the police official in charge.
  • Section 173 of the Cr.P.C necessitates that the last report or the final report is to be submitted to the Magistrate as after the Investigation gets over.

Thus the investigation of a case starts after the initial report is put together by the police to the Magistrate.

Also Read: The doctrine of Res judicata

[1] H.N. Rishbud vs. State of Delhi, AIR 1955 SC 196

[2] Guman Singh v. State of Rajasthan AIR 1970 Raj 173




2 thoughts on “The Procedure of Investigation Under Criminal Procedure Code

  • Oct 9, 2020 at 1:26 pm

    Hello Sir it will be a great help for people like us whose medium is hindi if you also give it in hindi too


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