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Criminal lawyer: after discharging the accused magistrate has no power to direct further investigation suo moto.

Supreme Court of India

Justice M R Shah

The interesting question arose for consideration before the supreme court of India that whether the magistrate has power to direct for the investigation suo moto after he takes cognizance of the police report and discharge the accused by exercising power under section 227 CrPC.

In the case titled as "Bikas Ranjan Rout Versus Government of NCT of Delhi", the Supreme Court of India has held that the powers available to the magistrate at pre cognizance stage are not available at the post cognizance stage as per the scheme of the Criminal Procedure Code.

It was further held that once the magistrate takes cognizance and discharge the accused under section 227 CrPC thereafter the magistrate has no power to direct for further Investigation on its own.

However, it was held that the police is empowered to do further Investigation on their own and to file supplementary chargesheet even after discharge of the accused, and in that case the magistrate is competent  to take cognizance of the said supplementary chargesheet against the accused who has already been discharged  in earlier police report, and issue summons for its appearance.

The Appeal was accordingly allowed.

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