The abuse of administrative power by law enforcement authorities in the form of violence against suspects and under-trials has emerged as one of the major human rights issues in recent times.
The abuse of administrative power by law enforcement authorities in the form of violence against suspects and under-trials has emerged as one of the major human rights issues in recent times. It is very important to understand the legal implications of such blatant violations of civil liberties in light of Article 20(3) of the Indian Constitution. Unbridled power in the hands of police authorities often results in the deprivation of basic human rights which are available to any under-custody suspect.
The aim of this article would be to generate an understanding as to how compelling such under-trials furnish information against themselves and/or other suspects through in humane means. This is completely against the Constitution and international standards such as the UDHR, Bangkok Rules as well as ICCPR.
Article 20(3)- How a Fundamental guarantee is violated
The oppression of an accused by the police owing to various reasons has been witnessed in the times of this pandemic such as the deaths of Jayaraj and Bennix in Tamil Nadu. This has forced many of us to engage in a healthy discussion as to how unlawful these acts of violence are and the need to be rectified through correct procedure. Despite the existence of Article 20(3) in the Indian Constitution, accused persons are often coerced in a violent and inhumane manner to provide information either against themselves, other suspects or maybe just due to hatred for his/her community.
Life and liberty are concepts which need to be taken very seriously and the balance between law enforcement and protection of rights needs to be gauged for ensuring that the principles of equity, reasonableness and justice are not eroded. The recent trend of police officials being excessively violent with people who do not observe the curfew casts a serious shadow on the human rights advocacy movement of the nation.
The fundamental rights or basic civil entitlements of cannot be compromised in the face of such custodial discrimination which eventually culminates in violence. There is a trend of custodial violence which has been observed over the past three years without any rectification of the same at the appropriate forums. This results in an injustice for the victims of such unwarranted violence at the hands of the police and needs to be stopped as soon as possible.
It would be interesting to know that in various instances of human rights the constitutional guarantee of no deprivation of life and liberty in accordance with established law is overlooked for some purpose or the other. Such arbitrary state action needs to be stopped for ensuring compliance with international standards as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Bangkok Rules, International Covenant in Civil and Political Rights.
It would be fitting to conclude this article on the note that the rights and liberties of every personnel to be recognized for providing adequate protection against unfair action taken against the under trial prisoners. This would entail a better sense of respect for the principles on which our great nation is held.
The recent case of Jayaraj and Bennix proved that police brutality has hit a new all-time low. It attracted a lot of chagrin from various national & international organisations such as the NHRC, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch. It needs to be understood that no person is of the above law and cannot override the said legal framework.
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