The victims of crime are not aware of the offences but most of the offenders are aware of the act because they have mens rea and they did the preparation. But what is a victim supposed to do?
The definition of victim is mentioned under Section 2(wa) of Code of Criminal Procedure as a person which has suffered loss or injury due to commission of any act or commission of any offence and the accused is charged for the same.
The guardian and legal heir also comes under the preview of the definition Victim.
So, whenever a victim goes to the Police Station, they can lodge a FIR (First Information Report) and N. C. R (Non Cognizable Report). If cognizable offences have been committed then he can file First Information Report and in Non Cognizable offence, Non Cognizable Report will be lodged.
Victims can also go to file a complaint before a Magistrate.
After the complaint and First Information Report has been lodged, investigation and inquiry comes into motion.
In Cognizable offences, Police starts its investigation and arrests the accused without warrant. In non cognizable offences, the Police starts its investigation and arrests the accused with a warrant.
So, one could conclude that investigation starts when a person lodges First Information Report or Non Cognizable Report and ends when the trail is started.
In case of Inquiry, Magistrate takes Cognizance and inquiry can be performed by him anytime.
So, basic difference between the investigation and inquiry is –
Investigation is defined under Section 2 (h) of Code of Criminal Procedure. Police initiate investigation and investigation ends when he submits police reports. However, re-investigation can be done if required.
Inquiry is defined under Section 2 (g) of Code of Criminal Procedure. Magistrate initiates inquiry if he is not satisfied, he can initiate it anytime.