The Karnataka High Court has held that inspectors of police and Anti- Corruption Bureau have lawful authority to register FIRs and undertake investigation for offences under the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988.
Justice John Michael Cunha observed that as officers in-charge of police stations, the inspectors of police and Anti-Corruption Bureau have lawful authority to register the FIRs and further by virtue of the general notification issued by the state government under Section 17 of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988, and they are also legally entitled to investigate into the offences under provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988.
The case of public servants booked under the Prevention of Corruption Act before the high court was that the office of the inspectors of police has not been declared as a police station under Section 2(s) of CrPC, 1973, and only Deputy Superintendent of Police is authorised to investigate offences under the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988, as per the notifications issued by the Karnataka Government, therefore, in the absence of similar notification declaring the office of the inspector of police, as a police station, the respondent cannot register the case and proceed with its investigation.
Rejecting these contentions, the court held that the government having declared the office of the deputy superintendent of police as “police station” within the meaning of 2(s) of the code, the police inspectors attached to the Anti-Corruption Bureau as ‘officers in-charge’ of the police station could always exercise the powers available to an officer in charge of a police station.
“Perusal of the notification dated 30.3.2016 amplifies the view that the state government intended to declare the Office of the Deputy Superintendent of Police where the Police Officers are stationed as the Police Station for the purpose of registering the cases and investigation of the offences under the provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988,” the court said.
Read the Judgment here.