What is Quashing of FIR u/s Section 482 of Criminal Procedure Code, 1973 ?

What is Quashing of FIR ? 

Quashing of FIR

Quashing of FIR ?

The quashing of a FIR is a legal recourse available to individuals who find themselves wrongly implicated in criminal proceedings.

Under Section 482 of the Cr.PC, the High Court holds the authority to exercise its inherent powers to quash FIR.

High Court can exercise its power conferred under Section 482 of the Code ensuring justice prevails.

IN the following paras we will understand the significance, process, and implications of quashing FIRs under Section 482.

Need for Quashing of FIR

The quashing of an FIR denotes the nullification or annulment of the criminal complaint lodged against an individual.

It serves as a mechanism to prevent abuse of the legal process and protect innocent individuals from undue harassment and prosecution.

Section 482 of Cr.PC empowers the High Court to quash FIRs either suo motu or upon the petition of the aggrieved party.

This provision vests the judiciary with discretionary powers to intervene in cases where it deems fit to do so in the interest of justice.

Process of Quashing FIR

The process of quashing an FIR under Section 482 of Cr.PC typically involves the filing of a petition before the High Court.

The petitioner, often the accused, submits detailed grounds supporting the quashing of the FIR, highlighting legal deficiencies, procedural irregularities, lack of evidence, or abuse of process.

The High Court examines the petition, along with the FIR and relevant documents, to ascertain the merit of the case.

It may conduct hearings to allow both parties to present their arguments before arriving at a decision.

Implications of Quashing First Information Report

The quashing of an First Information Report (FIR) carries significant implications for both the accused and the prosecution.

For the accused, it signifies the removal of criminal charges and the restoration of their reputation and liberty.

It relieves them from the burden of undergoing protracted legal proceedings and potential imprisonment.

Conversely, for the prosecution, quashing an FIR signifies a setback, indicating the inadequacy of evidence or legal flaws in the case presented.

However, it is important to note that the quashing of an FIR does not preclude the prosecution from initiating fresh proceedings if substantial evidence emerges subsequently.

Latest Criminal Judgments on Quashing of FIR are very much relevant for Supreme Court Advocate in Delhi for contesting the cases.

Legal Grounds for Quashing FIR

Several grounds may warrant the quashing of an FIR under Section 482 of Cr.PC. These include:

(a)        Lack of prima facie evidence: If the FIR lacks prima facie evidence to support the allegations made against the accused, the High Court may quash it to prevent frivolous litigation.

(b)      Abuse of process: If police register the FIR with malicious intent to settle personal scores or harass the accused, the High Court may intervene to prevent the abuse of the legal process.

(c)      Settlement between parties: In cases where the parties involved reach an amicable settlement and the continuance of criminal proceedings serves no purpose, the High Court may quash the FIR to promote reconciliation.

(d)      Violation of fundamental rights: If the FIR violates the fundamental rights of the accused, such as the right to liberty or dignity, the High Court may quash it to uphold constitutional principles.

Case Laws on Quashing of FIR

In the case of State of Haryana v. Bhajan Lal, AIR 1992 SC 604, in which the Supreme Court laid down those parameters.

The High Court can quash an FIR or a complaint in the exercise of its powers under “Article 226 of the Constitution of India or under section 482 CrPC.

Where uncontroverted allegations in the FIR or the complaint and the evidence collected in support do not disclose the commission of any offence and make out a case against the accused.

If the allegations in the FIR do not constitute a cognizable offence but constitute only a non-cognizable offence.

Supreme Court Judgment on Section 482

In the case of Arnab Manoranjan Goswami v. State of Maharashtra, AIR 2021 SC 1 the Supreme Court held that the following :-

“While adjudicating a quashing petition, the HC is duty-bound to undertake a prima facie evaluation of whether the ingredients of the alleged offence have been established in the FIR.”

In the case of CBI v Maninder Singh (2016) 1 SCC 389 held that the power under section 482 of CrPC must be used very sparingly and especially in economic offences, merely because the party had settled with the bank cannot be a ground for quashing criminal proceedings.

In Mahmood Ali vs State of UP (2023), an police lodged FIR against the accused alleging commission of offences under Sections 420, 467, 468, 471, 342, 386, 504, 506 IPC.

Allahabad High Court dismissed the petition seeking quashing of FIR, so aggrieved party filed an appeal in the Supreme Court; the Apex Court said

 “Even if the entire case of the prosecution is believed or accepted to be true, none of the ingredients to constitute the offence as alleged is disclosed.”

The FIR was lodged after a period of 14 years from the alleged act, there was no specific time or date mentioned about the alleged crime in the FIR.

Only Criminal Advocate in SC can file criminal appeal in Supreme Court at New Delhi for criminal Matters.