Chargesheets need not be put in public domain: Supreme Court

Source: The post is based on the article “Chargesheets need not be put in public domain: Supreme Court” published in The Hindu on 21st January 2023.

What is the News?

The Supreme Court has held the state is not obliged to provide the public free access to chargesheets by uploading them on police or government websites. The court declared chargesheets to be “private documents”

What is a Chargesheet?

According to Section 173 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC), a charge sheet is a report generated by police officers after investigating a case.

It contains all the stringent records right from the commencement of the investigation procedure of lodging an FIR to till the completion of the investigation and preparation of the final report.

It contains the names of the people brought in custody, the charges they are brought in for and the identity of the accusers.

Once the charge sheet has been submitted to a court of law, prosecution proceedings against the accused begin.

Time Limit for filing chargesheet: According to CrPC, the prescribed time limit for filing charge sheet is as follows: Offence triable by Magistrate: 60 days and Offences triable by Sessions Court: 90 days.

– If the charge sheet is not filed within the prescribed time mentioned above, the accused has a right to default bail.

What is the First Information Report(FIR)?

F.I.R. means any information recorded by an on-duty officer given by an aggrieved person or any other person either in writing or made orally about the commission of a Cognizable Offence. 

Based on the information so provided the investigation started. F.I.R. can also be registered by the Judicial Magistrate by giving direction to the concerned jurisdictional area of the Police Station.


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