Everyone is equal before the law and also our Indian Constitution treats everybody equally. Thus, even the arrested person has got his/her own rights. In a democratic society, even the rights of the accused are hallowed, however, blamed for an offence, he does not turn into a non-person. The accused in India are afforded some rights, the most essential of which are found in the Indian Constitution. The general hypothesis behind these rights is that the government has tremendous resources accessible to it for the prosecution of individuals, and people consequently are entitled to some protection from abuse of those powers by the government. (ARRESTED PERSON’S RIGHTS)
Why are the rights of the Accused imperative?
The benefit of the assumption of innocence of the accused until the time he is really seen as guilty at the completion of a trial validated with evidence is one of the fundamental principles of our legal framework. An accused has certain rights over the span of any investigation; enquiry or trial of an offence with which he is charged and he ought to be protected against subjective or unlawful arrest. Police have wide powers conferred on them to arrest any individual under cognizable offence without going to the Magistrate, so Court ought to be watchful to see that these powers are not abused for individual advantages. No arrest can be made on mere suspicion or data.
In the case of Kishore Singh Ravinder Dev v. State of Rajasthan, it was said that the laws of India, for example, Constitution, Evidentiary and procedural have made expound provisions for shielding the rights of accused with the view to protect his (accused) nobility as a person and giving him advantages of a just, fair and unprejudiced trail.
Also, our Indian Constitution under which Article 21 is been provided which says that no person shall be deprived of his life or personal liberty except according to the procedure established by law. Thus, even the Constitution acknowledges the rights of an arrested person under the Fundamental Rights.
Rights of an Arrested Person
There are certain rights available to the arrestee. These are as follows:
- Right to Silence: The first and foremost right available to the arrested persons is the right to silence. This right states that it is upon the accused to stay quiet or not to say anything in his own favor or except if his lawyer is counseled, or he is introduced before the Magistrate. This law is fundamentally protection against implication before any of the convictions being forced. It is basically concerned about confession. Even the Justice Malimath Committee composed that “it was basically the option to the right to refuse and incriminate oneself without an appropriate charge.”
- Right to know the grounds of arrest: The accused have the right to be informed about the grounds of his arrest. As indicated by Section 50(1) of Cr.P.C., an accused who is being arrested by any police officer, with no warrant, has the right to know the full specifics of offence for which he is being arrested, as it’s the evident obligation of the police officer to inform the accused regarding the points of interest. The option to be informed regarding the grounds of arrest is a valuable right of the arrested individual. Timely information of the grounds of arrest serves him from numerous points of view. It empowers him to move the proper court for bail, or in proper conditions for a writ of habeas corpus, or to make a quick course of action for his defence.
- Right to get bailed: It is to be seen that any individual who is to be arrested without a warrant and who is blamed for a bailable offence that he be informed by the police officer about his right in regards to being released on bail by payment of the guarantee sum. Two types of offences are there- Bailable and Non-bailable offence.
- Right of an arrested person to be taken before the Magistrate without delay: It is the obligation of the authorized official making an arrest that the arrestee is brought before a judicial officer immediately, regardless of how the arrest is made with or without a warrant. Alongside this provision, it must be seen that the arrested person ought to be taken and kept in a police station just and no other spot. The equivalent has been expressed in Sections 56 and 76 of CrPC. In case the police officials fail to produce the arrested person before the magistrate within 24 hours of the arrest, then the police officials will be held guilty of wrongful detainment.
- Right of not being detained for more than 24 hours without judicial scrutiny: Regardless of whether the arrest is without a warrant or under a warrant, the arrested individual must be brought under the watchful eye of the magistrate or court within 24 hours. This is given under Section 57 of the Indian Constitution. It further goes as no person can be detained by a police officer, without a warrant, for more than 24 hours than under all the circumstances of the case is reasonable, without the order from the Magistrate.
- Rights at Trial: This right involves two rights-
- Right to a Fair Trial– Right to equality has been conceded under article 14 of the constitution. It has been given under the Code of Criminal Procedure that for a trial to be fair, it must be an open court trial. So as to prevent mystery planning and obtaining convictions, this provision has been structured. The trial can be held in a camera also in certain remarkable conditions.
- Right to a Speedy Trial– Notwithstanding this right not being referenced in the constitution, the Supreme Court in the case of Hussainara Khatoon v. the State of Bihar has made it compulsory that the examination in the trial must be led “as speedily as could be expected under the circumstances.” In cases, where the maximum punishment to be forced is 2 years when the accused is arrested, it is significant that the examination for the trial gets finished within the period of six months or is halted after an order from a magistrate has been received, except if the Magistrate gets and acknowledges, with his reasons in writing, that there is cause to extend the investigation.
- Right to Free Legal Aid: The Supreme Court on account of in Khatri(II) v. the State of Bihar held that the state is under a constitutional obligation as is certain in article 21 of the constitution also to give free legal aid to a needy denounced individual. It is imperative to take note of the way that this right begins at the time of trial and proceeds till the accused is produced the first time before the magistrate and furthermore when remanded every now and then.
- Right of the accused to produce evidence: The accused even has the option to produce witnesses in his defence if there should be an occurrence of a police report or private defence. After the examination and interrogation of all prosecution witnesses, i.e., after the fulfillment of the prosecution case, the accused will be called upon to enter upon his defence and any written statement put in will be loaded up with the record. He may even call further for questioning. The judge will continue recording the proof of prosecution witness until the prosecution ends its proof.
Thus, it can be observed that more or less, it is the police authority’s responsibility to safeguard the rights of the arrestee. They must ensure that the person they take into custody has not been dragged into unnecessarily. Still, it is for the most part accepted that regardless of the different protections in the Cr.P.C. just as in the Constitution, the power of arrest given to the police is being abused to this day. It is likewise accepted that the police regularly utilize their position of power to undermine the arrested people and exploit their office to extort money. There have additionally been multitudinous reports on custodial violence that persuade that hardship of essential rights of the arrested people has become ordinary these days.
This blog is written by Rashi Srivastava, Amity University.
Some of her blogs-
- RIGHT TO DIE: FUNDAMENTAL RIGHT?
- AN ANALYSIS OF NATIONAL IPR POLICY
- COPYRIGHT VS DESIGN
- DUAL CITIZENSHIP IN INDIA
- CHARGE UNDER CODE OF CRIMINAL PROCEDURE
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