Registering an FIR in Pakistan is easier than most people think it is. If you have witnessed a crime or have unfortunately become a victim of one, you must file an FIR in your local police station as soon as possible so the authorities can begin their investigation.
Here is everything you need to know about the process of filing an FIR in Pakistan, tracking its status, and more.
What is an FIR?
First Information Report, more commonly referred to as an FIR, is a written document prepared by the police containing information about the commission of a cognizable offence. This report is generally lodged by the victim, a witness or someone who knows about the crime. A police officer who comes to know about the crime can also lodge an FIR themselves.
Contrary to popular belief, it is not mandatory to provide the police with a written report to lodge an FIR in Pakistan. Instead, one can report the crime orally or even through the phone. It is the responsibility of the police to register an FIR without any excuses or delays. In fact, not registering an FIR is considered an offence and can result in disciplinary action against the concerned officer.
Filing an FIR is extremely important as the police can only start investigating an incident once its report has been registered. This makes an FIR one of the most important pieces of legal documents that set the process of criminal justice in motion.
It is also important to mention that one can only file an FIR for a cognizable offence, where the police have the authority to start an investigation on their own without requiring any orders from the court. When it comes to cognizable offences, the police can also arrest a person without a warrant.
Who Can File an FIR in Pakistan?
The following people can file an FIR in Pakistan following the commission of a cognizable offence:
- The victim against whom the offence has been committed
- The witness who has seen the offence being committed
- The person who knows the offence has been committed
According to a citizen’s guide published by the Centre for Peace and Development Initiatives (CPDI) Pakistan, the police may not investigate an incident even after an FIR has been filed if it is not serious or if the authorities believe there isn’t enough ground to carry out an investigation. The police may also not take any action if they have allocated all of their resources to investigate more serious offences.
Nonetheless, Section 157 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1898, makes it mandatory for the police to record their reasons for not investigating an offence. They must also update the complainant about the status of their report.
How to File an FIR in Pakistan?
Here is a step-by-step guide on how to file an FIR in Pakistan as prescribed in Section 154 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1898
Step 1: You must visit or call a police station to provide information about the commission of a cognizable offence.
Step 2: After the police officer has recorded the information and prepared the report, ask for it to be read over to you. Please remember that it is your right to review the contents of the FIR.
Step 3: Verify the information recorded by the police to make sure it includes all the information provided by you
Step 4: Sign the report once you have verified all the detail so it can be registered
Step 5: The complainants who can’t read or write must register their left thumb impression instead
Step 6: Ask the police to give you a copy of the FIR. It must be provided free of cost
How to File Online Police Complaint in Pakistan
Alternatively, you can also file online police complaints in Pakistan by visiting the official websites of provincial law enforcement agencies. The new electronic system has made it easier to register complaints as well as track their progress in terms of arrests and recovery. These databases are also integrated with NADRA and Police Human Resource Management Information System among others to ensure data integrity across all systems.
Let’s take a look at the process to file an online complaint in Pakistan.
Filing Online Complaint in Islamabad
The residents of Islamabad can visit the official website of Islamabad Police and click on ‘Submit a Complaint’ in the top navigation panel. It will redirect you to the Online Complaint System where you will be required to add your name, address, contact number, CNIC number, city, nature of the complaint and complaint details in the relevant fields.
Once you have entered all of the relevant information, please click on the ‘Submit’ button appearing at the bottom of the page.
Filing Online Complaint in Punjab
To file an online police complaint in Punjab, please visit the Punjab Police website and scroll down the main page to click on the ‘Lodge e-Complaint’ button. You will then be redirected to a new webpage, which will provide you with two options: track your complaint or register one.
If you choose to register a new complaint, you will be asked to add your name, CNIC number and phone number in the blank fields before clicking ‘Submit.’
You can also complain by calling or sending a text message to 8787.
To generate a copy of your FIR, re-open the Punjab Police website and hover your cursor over the ‘Request’ box. Select ‘Copy of FIR’ from the drop-down menu to proceed.
Filing Online Complaint in Sindh
If you want to file a complaint against a cognizable offence in Sindh, visit the Sindh Police website and click on ‘Complaint Management System’ from the list of quick links appearing on the main page to be redirected to the online complaint portal. Once there, you can start registering your complaint by entering your CNIC in the relevant field and clicking on the ‘Next’ button.
You can also use the same webpage to check the status of your police complaint.
Filing Online Complaint in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa
Visit the official website of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa police and click on ‘Online FIR’ from the left-hand navigation panel. Once the web form opens up, carefully fill in your details including your name, father’s name, CNIC number, landline number, mobile number, address, home district, home police station, date of the incident, and details of the incident among other details to file an online FIR.
On the other hand, to check the status of your FIR online, click on e-FIR in the left-hand navigation panel and enter your CNIC number in the blank field before pressing the ‘Search’ button.
Filing Online Complaint in Balochistan
To file an online complaint in Balochistan, visit the website of the provincial police and click on the ‘e-complaint’ tab appearing on the main page.
You can use this form to lodge an online complaint to any of the 33 districts in the province. If needed, you can also upload multiple files and documents on the portal.
Moreover, you can also file your complaint by calling or sending an SMS at 8787.
What Does an FIR Include?
Now that we know all about registering an FIR in Pakistan, let’s discuss its basic anatomy. Typically, a First Information Report includes:
- Name of the person lodging the FIR
- Address of the person lodging the FIR
- Date, time and location of the incident being reported
- Accurate facts about the incident
- Use of weapons, if any
- Names and description of the person(s) involved in the incident
- Names of the witnesses, if any
- Addresses of the witnesses, if any
We hope that our blog on how to file FIR in Pakistan has answered all of your pressing questions about the topic. If you found this useful, here are a few more guides that might draw your interest:
- Complete Guide to Police Force Ranks in Pakistan
- Guide to Verifying Vehicle Ownership in Pakistan
- How to Check Vehicle Registration Online In Pakistan
- Getting an Online Driving License in Pakistan
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