Difference Between Cognizable Offence and Non Cognizable Offence

Edited by Diffzy | Updated on: August 29, 2022

       

Difference Between Cognizable Offence and Non Cognizable Offence Difference Between Cognizable Offence and Non Cognizable Offence

Why read @ Diffzy

Our articles are well-researched

We make unbiased comparisons

Our content is free to access

We are a one-stop platform for finding differences and comparisons

We compare similar terms in both tabular forms as well as in points


Introduction

An offense is a crime that violates a specific law and calls for a specific punishment. We all know that a criminal must first be apprehended before being questioned by the police to be punished. After that, a correct sequential process is followed until the matter is heard in court. The official criminal code of India is known as the Indian Penal Code or I.P.C. It covers every significant facet of criminal law. It defines all actions that qualify as criminal offenses. Offenses can be categorized into three categories based on their nature and seriousness. These include bailable and nonbailable offenses, cognizable and non-cognizable, and compoundable and non-compoundable.

Criminal offenses that a police officer may detain without a warrant under Schedule I of the Criminal Procedure Code or under any other legislation for a limited period up to that law takes effect are known as cognizable offenses. It implies that the need to detain the suspect is urgent. Under CrPC Section 2(c), it is granted. Non-cognizable offenses are those for which a police officer lacks the legal right to arrest without a warrant. Under CrPC Section 2(l), it is granted. It implies that non-cognizable offenses are less severe, and therefore there is less need to arrest someone without a warrant.

Cognizable Offence Vs. Non-Cognizable Offence

offense alludes to wrongdoing or a crime. More precisely, an offense is any conduct that is criminal and for which a complaint is made to the proper authorities, such as the police or a magistrate. The crime may be categorized into cognizable offenses and non-cognizable offenses. A cognizable offense is one for which the accused can be detained by the police without a warrant. On the other hand, a non-cognizable offense is one in which a warrant is not necessary for an arrest and requires the court's express consent for an inquiry to proceed. To better grasp the law, one needs to be aware of the distinctions between cognizable and non-cognizable offenses when it comes to crimes.

The severity of an offense determines the grounds for categorization. The severity of each offense is determined by its penalty. Serious offenses are classified as cognizable offenses and are punished by imprisonment of at least three years. The CrPC does not define the term "cognizable" and does not specify a precise methodology for classifying offenses. It does, however, state in general terms that crimes that are punishable by death, life in prison, or a sentence of more than three years are regarded as cognizable crimes. In the event of a non-cognizable offense, the police are prohibited from detaining the suspect without a warrant and from opening an inquiry without the court's approval. Non-cognizable crimes include forgery, cheating, defamation, public disturbance, etc.

When one of these offenses occurs, one files a criminal complaint with the metropolitan magistrate, who will instruct the relevant police station to launch an inquiry. The charge sheet is expected to be submitted to the court by the police officer, and then there will be a trial. If the accused is found guilty following the trial, the court issues a warrant for his or her arrest.

Difference Between Cognizable Offence And Non-Cognizable Offence in Tabular Form

Table: Cognizable Offense Vs. Non-Cognizable Offense
Parameters Of Comparison
Cognizable Offence
Non-Cognizable Offence
Significance
A cognizable offense is one in which the police are permitted to report the crime on their own.
Non-cognizable offenses are those for which the police lack the power to detain a suspect on their own.
Petition
F.I.R. and grievance
Merely a complaint.
Includes
Killing, raping, stealing, abduction, etc.
Fraud, abuse, violence, slander, etc.
Arrest
Without permission
Needs a warrant
Offense
Heinous
Significantly less horrible
Consent of the court
Not necessary to start the inquiry.
To start an inquiry, the court must provide its prior authority beforehand.
Crime severity
Serious crimes are recognized offenses.
Offenses that cannot be recognized are less severe.
Examples
Killing, stealing, abduction, etc.
Assault, fraud, slander, etc.
Statutory
It is described in Section 2(c) of the Criminal Procedure Code of 1973.
Section 2(I) of the Criminal Procedure Code of 1973 defines it.

What Is Cognizable Offence?

A cognizable offense is one for which the police officer can make the arrest of the defendant without a warrant and can launch an inquiry without the judge's approval. Once the suspect is taken into custody for such offenses, he or she will appear before the magistrate within the allotted period. The court's acceptance is implied in cognizable offenses since the crime is serious in character. The first information report, or F.I.R., is only filed in cases of offenses that are punishable by law. Murder, rape, rioting, robbery, dowry deaths, abduction, criminal breach of trust, and other terrible offenses are recognized as serious offenses.

 A recognized offense is one for which a police officer may arrest without a warrant or the consent or order of the magistrate in line with the First Schedule or any other legislation now in effect. Serious offenses are recognized as such. For example, consider crimes like murder, rape, dowery murder, kidnapping, theft, criminal breach of trust, and unnatural offenses.

Procedure to be used in situations of offenses that are punishable

F.I.R.

F.I.R. is information that a person, known or unknown, has committed a crime specified as a cognizable offense of the Criminal Procedure Code. The informant must sign the document. The F.I.R. must be forwarded to the magistrate for his review and record after being sent to the informant in two copies. This is viewed as the cornerstone or core of the prosecution case. According to legend, F.I.R. is the original, unadulterated, unguided case account and is rarely untrue.

Report to the Magistrate

The officer-in-charge notifies the relevant judicial magistrate of a reported cognizable offense and designates either himself or a junior officer to conduct the inquiry.

Investigation

The investigation gets started as soon as the information is received and documented in a cognizable offense. Warrants and all other procedures related to the magistrate's order come later. Then, the police officer assigned to the case moves forward to locate the culprit, make the arrest, and learn the case details. Unfortunately, section 468 of the Criminal Procedure Code does not specify a deadline for concluding an investigation into particularly heinous offenses. Still, one may always file a complaint with the Supreme Court under Article 21, which guarantees the right to freedom under the Indian Constitution if an investigation is delayed unreasonably.

Documentation Lookup and Production

For a cognizable offense, the police can search if they think it is necessary during an investigation. Additionally, he has the authority to require someone to produce any papers necessary for the case.

Arrest

A person is physically restrained after being accused of committing a crime that is cognizable when they are arrested. For a person to be arrested, three conditions must be met: Intent to arrest legally; lawful detention; the detained individual is aware of his rights and understands why he is being held.

Declaration of Witnesses

The individuals involved in the case, primarily the witnesses and the accused, are interrogated, and the testimonies of their versions of events are documented during the inquiry.

The Medical Exam

It is the responsibility of the police officer to arrange for a medical examination to be done within 24 hours of the incident being reported in cases of rape, molestation, and other crimes requiring one.

Trial

Every witness who testifies will now testify in court under oath, giving the same evidence, which is the hallmark of a trial. There are numerous types of trials: Trials of warrant cases, summons cases, trials initiated after cognizance of a police report, and trials conducted by magistrates. As warrant cases and session cases deal with more severe and heinous offenses, they are typically used for cognizable trial offenses.

Judgment

The judgment includes the issues to be decided, the ruling on those issues, and the justifications after considering the witnesses' testimony, the accused's examination, and the accused's cross-examination.

What Is a Non-Cognizable Offence?

Offenses that are bailable and included under the Indian Penal Code's first schedule are known as non-cognizable offenses. When an offense is not cognizable, the police are not allowed to make an arrest without a warrant or launch an inquiry without the court's previous consent. It covers offenses including forgery, assault, fraud, libel, public disturbance, harm, and mischief. A criminal complaint must be filed with the metropolitan magistrate in the instance of a non-cognizable offence, and the magistrate will then instruct the relevant police station to launch an appropriate investigation. Next, a charge sheet is submitted to the court, and the trial then takes place. The court will provide directives about the issuance of an arrest warrant for the accused following the trial.

When one of these offenses occurs, one files a criminal complaint with the metropolitan magistrate, who will then instruct the relevant police station to launch an inquiry. The charge sheet is expected to be submitted to the court by the police officer, and then there will be a trial. If the accused is found guilty following the trial, the court issues a warrant for his or her arrest. Here are a few instances of non-cognizable offenses:

  • Assault
  • Cheating
  • Forgery

Essential Components of a Non-Recognizable Offense:

Non-cognizable offenses are those for which an arrest without a warrant is not permitted by law. In such arrestable offenses, all necessary actions must be taken, including

  • Complaint
  • F.I.R. filing
  • Investigation
  • Charge sheet

The process is to be used in cases that are not cognizable.

No police officer may conduct an investigation under the Code of Criminal Procedure without the consent of the relevant magistrate. When a police officer asks the magistrate for permission, it is not mandatory for him to always give it. In certain situations, the magistrate has the option of granting permission or refusing to do so, but he must provide justification for his choice. A defendant in a case before the High Court appealed a magistrate's decision to allow the police to investigate an offense that had been filed against him under Section 182 IPC . Regarding the specifics of the case, an official investigation was carried out against several officials who engaged in corrupt behavior while doing their official responsibilities. A police officer performed a preliminary investigation before it, and as part of it, he recorded the petitioner and accused some other people's remarks.

However, during the official investigation, they changed their story and refused to back up what they had told the police officer about the fraudulent actions of the incompetent authorities. Instead, they became antagonistic and spread lies to support dishonest authorities who were corrupt. The police officer reported them for the offense under Section 182 IPC after taking it seriously. As a result, the relevant sub-inspector of police filed a complaint against them for the aforementioned non-cognizable offense, and the officer (complainant) asked the concerned magistrate for permission to look into the situation. The accused appealed the magistrate's decision to grant authorization to investigate in front of the High Court.

Main Differences Between  Cognizable Offence And Non-Cognizable Offence in Points

  1. A cognizable offense is one in which the police take independent action to recognize the crime; this action does not require judicial permission. Contrarily, a non-cognizable offense is one in which the police are not permitted to detain a suspect for a crime on their own without the express consent of the court.
  2. The police have the authority to detain someone in a cognizable offense without a warrant. Contrarily, a warrant is required in cases of non-cognizable offenses.
  3. A court's authorization is not necessary to launch an inquiry into a cognizable offense. In contrast, in order to conduct an inquiry in a non-cognizable offense, a court order must first be acquired.
  4. A cognizable offense is one in which the police take independent action to recognize the crime; this action does not require judicial permission. Contrarily, a non-cognizable offense is one in which the police are not permitted to detain a suspect for a crime on their own without the express consent of the court.
  5. The police have the authority to detain someone in a cognizable offense without a warrant. Contrarily, a warrant is required in cases of non-cognizable offenses.
  6. A court's authorization is not necessary to launch an inquiry into a cognizable offense. In contrast, in order to conduct an inquiry in a non-cognizable offense, a court order must first be acquired.
  7. Police officers must conduct an investigation into a cognizable offense even without a magistrate's order, although they can only do so in the case of a non-cognizable offense.
  8. Public Wrong + Prosecution at State's Discretion in a Cognizable Offense; Private Wrong + Prosecution at Parties' Initiative in a Non-Cognizable Offense.

Conclusion

The most important steps a police officer must take to conduct an investigation into both cognizable and non-cognizable offenses are outlined in the Criminal Procedure Code, 1974. Understanding the distinctions between the two is crucial for comprehending police authority, investigative procedures, etc. Without the magistrate's approval, the police can arrest the suspect fora cognizable offense and launch an inquiry. As cognizable offenses are serious felonies, this is done in order to catch the offender as quickly as feasible. The likelihood of the accused injuring other members of society is high. In non-cognizable circumstances, however, this is not the case. Therefore, the investigation process is the same in both, with the arrest of the accused serving as the sole variation.


Category

Law


Cite this article

Use the citation below to add this article to your bibliography:


Styles:

×

MLA Style Citation


"Difference Between Cognizable Offence and Non Cognizable Offence." Diffzy.com, 2022. Sun. 02 Oct. 2022. <https://www.diffzy.com/article/difference-between-cognizable-offence-and-non-cognizable-973>.



Edited by
Diffzy


Share this article