New Delhi: In view of the increasing sexual offenses against women in the country, the Ministry of Home Affairs has issued an advisory. The Government of India has taken steps to strengthen legislative provisions to deal with incidents of sexual offenses against women and girls. The Government of India has, from time to time, issued various advisories to the States / Union Territories, emphasizing the strict action taken by the police in cases of crime against women. The Ministry of Home Affairs has stated in its advisory that it is mandatory to file an FIR in such cases. Use of Forensic Investigation and Sexual Assault Evidence Collection (SAEC) Kit, completing investigations into sexual assault cases in two months, using national database to identify and monitor sex offenders, etc.
What is MHA Advisory:
It is mandatory to file an FIR in the event of a cognizable offense. The law also provides for Shjiro FIRs (if the offense is outside the limits of the police station).
Under Section 166 A (C) of the IPC, there is a provision for punishment to the officer for not filing an FIR.
Section 173 of the CrPC provides for the investigation of rape related cases in two months. MHA has created an online portal for monitoring cases.
As per section 164-A of CRPC, a registered medical practitioner will conduct a medical examination with the consent of the victim within 24 hours upon receipt of a rape / sexual abuse case.
According to Section 32 (1) of the Indian Evidence Act, the statement of the deceased person will be an important fact in the investigation.
The Forensic Science Services Directorate has created guidelines for collecting, storing forensic evidence in cases of sexual abuse. Follow them. If the police do not follow these provisions then justice will not be done. If negligence comes to the fore, strict action should be taken against such officers.
Why the need for advisory arose?
In cases of crimes against women, police insensitivity has often come to the fore. Complaints of inadvertence come in filing FIRs. Apart from this, complaints of not being on medical time, intentionally weakening the case, postponing the case are also common. Police often do not follow the necessary forensic procedure in cases of rape. This destroys critical evidence and weakens the case. The way the Ministry of Home Affairs has emphasized on the investigation process in its advisory, it is clear that it is not satisfied with the functioning of the police.