Report No. 152
8.3. Section 167A, I.P.C. recommended.-
Under the existing law, there is no provision for taking penal action against the police for their refusal to record information as contemplated by section 151(1) of the Code. Sub-section (3) of section 154 provides that on the refusal by the police to register a case, the aggrieved person may send the substance of the complaint in writing to the Superintendent of Police who may investigate the case himself or direct any officer in-charge of police station to investigate the same.
This procedure is, no doubt, useful as is illustrated by a reported case but it is not, in itself adequate, for meeting the problem of non-registration. The Law Commission of India in its 84th Report on "Rape and Allied Offences" took note of this position. The Commission found that administrative action of providing alternative method of lodging the information do not prove more effective and there was a need for suitable penal provision providing for the punishment of the erring police officers for their failure to record information relating to the commission of a cognizable offence.
The Commission recommended the enactment of section 167A in the Indian Penal Code. The draft of the recommended section was as under:-
"167. Whoever, being an officer in-charge of a police station and required by law to record any information relating to the commission of cognizable offence reported to him refuses or without reasonable cause fails to record such information, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to one year or with fine or with both."
The above penal provision, if implemented will certainly have a deterrent effect on the police and it may discourage or prevent the malpractice of refusing to register information relating to commission of cognizable offences. We are in full agreement with the recommendation made by the Commission in its 84th Report and we reiterate the same.