Police Complaint in India – When and How to File?

Every year almost a million police complaints are filed to the Police, and as per the data by National Crime Records Bureau 7,50,000 cases are closed due to lack of evidence or due to any unfortunate reason. Filing a police complaint signifies that the citizens of our country are vigilant about their rights, and have faith over their legal guardians to make good the loss. 

A police station is a set-up to maintain peace and tranquility and to make sure that the law is obeyed in the country. In case of any violation of law or crime committed, the police have to remedy the loss at all costs and prevent further damage.

A police complaint can be filed by any individual irrespective of the fact whether one is related to the accused in any manner. There are two types of offences- Cognizable offences which include heinous crimes such as murder, rape, or any such offence punishable with death or imprisonment for life, and Non-cognizable offence includes offences that are not so serious such as forgery, cheating, assault, defamation, etc. The complaint related to cognizable offences is to be filed directly to the police or the Magistrate. On the other hand, in the case of non-cognizable offences, the complaint is to be filed directly to the Magistrate who has the power to take cognizance of the matter. This is also defined under section 200 of CrPC. In the case of a non-cognizable offence, a report filed by the police officer is deemed to be a ‘complaint’ and the officer filing is deemed to be the ‘complainant’.

Essential ingredients for a complaint:

– There should be an accusation of commission of any offence

– Accusation made could be oral or written

– It is made directly to the Magistrate

– Allegation could be against anyone whether a relative or a stranger

Define Police Complaint

A police complaint is an official complaint filed by an individual who appears to have knowledge regarding the commission of any offence. Filing a police complaint puts the complaint in action and the officers on duty are bound to investigate the matter. 

A complaint defines the facts and circumstances corresponding to the offense being reported, further assisting the police to alter the situation. As discussed above, any individual can file a complaint that could either be oral or written and could be related to a cognizable or a non-cognizable offence.

Even in cases where the individual has not suffered any injury but has been a witness to any offence is ought to report the same to the police or the Magistrate. In cases, where the police refuse to register an FIR, the complainant can file a protest petition to the Magistrate, who then orders an investigation into the matter.

In the case of Mr.Amit Khera v Govt. of NCT of Delhi & Ors, 2010

It was held by the court that an oral complaint shall also come under the purview of section 2(d) of the CrPC. The court reiterated that filing of a formal written complaint is not necessary, one can report any offense orally. If required by the Magistrate, the oral complaint shall be reduced into writing and also be attested by the complainant. 

How to draft a Police complaint

As there is no formal structure explained in any statute, a uniform usage is adopted for filing a formal letter:

– To start with, time and date are to be mentioned in the letter on the top right corner. This will assist during the filing of FIR, and such mention could help the police keep note of the complaint as many complaints are filed.

– On the left side of the letter, mention the name of the addressee i.e the name of the police officer the complaint is addressed to with the address of the police station of the nearest police station.

– A headline should be mentioned in a concise manner briefing the police about the act committed to short. It should also contain the name of the complainant, the accused and the offence committed.

– Further, the letter is segregated into three levels:

Level 1: The first level includes the explanation of the incident crisply and comprehensively by the complainant or the informant. It should include all the details such as the time and date when he met with the accused, or how the accused reacted to the situation, and so on. It should contain only facts and no concoctions.

Level 2: This includes the schedule of events that occurred later on. It should also include the type of wrong committed by the accused for which the complaint is being filed. One should remember that stating the wrong section in the complaint will not annihilate the same or have any negative impact on the complaint. 

Level 3: The last level includes the prayer clause, and the details of the complainant so he could be reached by the police during the investigation. The clause should direct the remedy being sought to the Station House Officer (SHO), or police official.

Means of Communication

Two copies are to be extracted, the original copy remains with the Police and the other one with the complainant. The police copy is then delivered to the concerned police official varying with the case, either to the SHO, ACP, DCP, or the CP.

The complaint letter is addressed to the official directly, on receival the complaint is first registered in the Daily Diary register (DD), further a second copy is issued with the DD number and details of the investigating officer with the date and time the complaint was received.

There are other means of communication as well such as filing through speed post, courier, or email. Surprisingly, even a phone call by the aggrieved or the informant amounts to a complaint and is valid under the law.

In case, the SHO is not available then the senior-most officer in the station shall assist with the filing of the FIR, or in any other case, the head constable may also assist with the filing.

Points To keep in mind:

– One should try to report the crime as soon as possible, in case of delay reason should be stated with date and time.

– Complaints can be filed orally as well, if need be the police can reduce the complaint into writing and attest the same by the complainant.

– Use of technical jargon should be avoided, and the facts should be mentioned in a crisp manner.

– Four copies of complaints are to be extracted using carbon sheets. 

– First-person language to be used while stating the facts of the situation.

– Make sure to double-check the time and date mentioned in the complaint and DD register.

– In your complaint, mention the loss or damage caused, witnesses (if any), accused details, time, and place of the offence.

– Remember not to file any false case against any person, if caught one will be charged under section 203 of the Indian Penal Code.

Complaints can also be filed online via the official website. If you want to file your complaint reach out to us at www.lawsimpl.com.



The Police Inspector,                                                                       Date – 06 September 2020

Punjabi Bagh West, 

Delhi District 

Subject – Regarding an attempt to murder in house number 684 on September 6, 2020

Respected Sir,

I am writing to inform you that on the afternoon of September 5, 2020, there was an attempted murder at my residence, numbered 684. After descending from the roof, the accused entered through the back door. The accused confronted me and my family in the hall with a gun. My wife and children were terrified. I got into a tussle with him and asked my wife to call for help. As soon as the guard heard, the accused fired a shot in my abdomen and ran. The guard, however, was unable to apprehend him, and he fled. I was rushed to the hospital and was saved. With the letter, I’ve included a CCTV recording. For the past few weeks, there have been a lot of suspicious activities in our region. Because this is a question of our safety, I suggest that you investigate the situation and take appropriate action as soon as possible. I eagerly anticipate your kind aid in this matter. 

Thank you

Yours sincerely Basant Kumar

Leave a Reply Cancel reply
Previous Article

Laws Protecting the Rights of Senior Citizen in India

Next Article

Legal Aspects of Live-In-Relationships in India

Related Posts