Question: What is Police Diary? State its object. [UPAPO 2002] Find the answer to the mains question only on Legal Bites. [What is Police Diary? State its object.] Answer Section 172 of Cr.P.C lays down provisions regarding the diary of proceedings in the investigation. Sub-section (1) of the code states that “Every police officer making an investigation under this Chapter… Read More »

Question: What is Police Diary? State its object. [UPAPO 2002] Find the answer to the mains question only on Legal Bites. [What is Police Diary? State its object.] Answer Section 172 of Cr.P.C lays down provisions regarding the diary of proceedings in the investigation. Sub-section (1) of the code states that “Every police officer making an investigation under this Chapter shall day by day enter his proceedings in the investigation in a diary, setting forth the time at which the...

Question: What is Police Diary? State its object. [UPAPO 2002]

Find the answer to the mains question only on Legal Bites. [What is Police Diary? State its object.]

Answer

Section 172 of Cr.P.C lays down provisions regarding the diary of proceedings in the investigation.

Sub-section (1) of the code states that “Every police officer making an investigation under this Chapter shall day by day enter his proceedings in the investigation in a diary, setting forth the time at which the information reached him, the time at which he began and closed his investigation, the place or places visited by him, and a statement of the circumstances ascertained through his investigation.

[(1-A) The statements of witnesses recorded during the course of an investigation under Section 161 shall be inserted in the case diary.

(1-B) The diary referred to in sub-section (1) shall be a volume and duly paginated.]

(2) Any Criminal Court may send for the police diaries of a case under inquiry or trial in such Court and may use such diaries, not as evidence in the case, but to aid it in such inquiry or trial.

(3) Neither the accused nor his agents shall be entitled to call for such diaries, nor shall he or they be entitled to see them merely because they are referred to by the Court; but, if they are used by the police officer who made them to refresh his memory, or if the Court uses them for the purpose of contradicting such police officer, the provisions of section 161 or section 145, as the case may be, of the Indian Evidence Act, 1872 (1 of 1872 ), shall apply.”

Every Police Officer making an investigation shall enter his proceedings in a Diary, which must be used at the trial or inquiry, not as evidence in the case, but to aid the Court in such inquiry or trial.

The case Diary is only a record of the day-to-today investigation of the Investigating Officer to ascertain the statement of circumstances ascertained through the investigation. A Court is within its competence to read a Police Diary as an aid and that can be done to satisfy its conscience in appreciating the legal evidence available on the record but not beyond. The entries in the case Diary are not the evidence, nor can they be used by the accused or the Court, unless the case comes within the scope of Section 172 (3).

Assuming that there is a failure to keep a diary as required by Section 172 Cr.P.C., the same cannot have the effect of making the evidence of such police officer inadmissible and what inference should be drawn in such a situation depends upon the facts of each case. It is well-settled that the entries of the police diary are neither substantive nor corroborating evidence and they cannot be used by or against any other witness than the police officer and can only be used to the limited extent indicated above. The above-stated principles are reiterated in many decisions rendered by the courts.

As early as 1897 the Full Court of the Allahabad High Court in Queen Empress v. Mannu, ILR Allahabad VoL XIX 390 examined the scope of Section 172 Cr.P.C. and the meaning of the police diaries and Edge, CJ. who spoke for the Court held thus:

“Section 172 of the Code of Criminal Procedure provides for the two events, on the happening of either of which the accused or his agent is entitled to see the special diary: and it enacts that, except on the happening on one of those events, “neither the accused nor his agents, shall be entitled to call for such diaries, nor shall he or they be entitled to see them merely because they are referred to by the Court.

In my opinion, the plain meaning of section 172 is that the special diary, no matter what it may contain, is absolutely privileged, unless it is used to enable the Police officer who made, it to refresh his memory or is used for the purpose of contradicting him.”

Coming to the entries that are to be made and the “aid” which the courts can have, it was further observed:

“A properly kept special diary would afford such information, and such information would enable the Magistrate or Judge to determine whether persons referred to in the special diary, but not sent up as witnesses by the Police, should be summoned to give evidence in the interests of the prosecution or of the accused. It must be always remembered that it is the duty of the Magistrate or of the Judge before whom a criminal case is, to ascertain if possible on which side the truth is, and to decide accordingly.”

The Police Diary mentioned in sub-section (2) to Section 172 Cr.P.C. refers to the general diary where entries are made about the events which take place in the Police Station in Chronological order and it is ordinarily difficult to fabricate false entries in such diary and this diary has to be maintained day by day. This diary is known as a general diary.

The entries in the diary prepared under Section 172 are only notes of secondary evidence of witnesses who can be examined in the first instance and whose evidence, if necessary, should be recorded in the open Court in the presence of the accused. Therefore, they do not assume the character of either the substantive evidence or the corroborative evidence. It, therefore, follows that neither the accused nor his agent is entitled to see the diary, though the Court may call for the diary and refer to it.


Important Mains/Long Questions for Judiciary, APO & University Exams

  1. CRPC Mains Questions Series Part I: Important Questions
  2. CRPC Mains Questions Series Part II: Important Questions
  3. CRPC Mains Questions Series Part III: Important Questions
  4. CRPC Mains Questions Series Part IV: Important Questions
  5. CRPC Mains Questions Series Part V: Important Questions
  6. CRPC Mains Questions Series Part VI: Important Questions
  7. CRPC Mains Questions Series Part VII: Important Questions
  8. CRPC Mains Questions Series Part VIII: Important Questions
  9. CRPC Mains Questions Series Part IX: Important Questions
  10. CRPC Mains Questions Series Part X: Important Questions
  11. CRPC Mains Questions Series Part XI: Important Questions
Updated On 11 May 2022 3:54 AM GMT
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