Ipc 144

This article is written by Parul Chaturvedi pursuing LLB from Dr. R.M.L Law College Bangalore. It is an exhaustive article dealing with the procedure to file a complaint against a police officer in PCA, the roles and functions of PCA with the latest amendments and provisions.

Introduction

In every country, there is law and order to maintain peace and harmony for the proper regulation. Police are an essential part of society to make sure that there is no violence, killing, robbery, theft. They worked as a recognized agent for the government. During the time of emergency, like the present situation of lockdown and curfew the role of police is very significant to control any mishap to happen in the city to maintain proper law and order. Citizens are also dependent on the police at the time of need. The police are expected to be a collective and vital organization of society. Their power and function are crucial on one hand and difficult on the other. The dominance of different powers in the hands of police contributes to the opening of the door to human rights corruption and infringement. This article will communicate the powers and roles of the police. In case the police violate a human right, where can citizens complain? What are the provisions in CrPC? Where can one file a complaint against police if they illegally beat us?

Police atrocity is a serious problem. The crime committed by police remains one of the most serious and disruptive human rights violations in India. The excessive use of force by the police officers, including unjustified shootings, severe beatings, fatal, and rough treatment against criminals. The order from senior officials and politicians constitutes a major barrier to the police for escaping from their duty and encouraging them to commit human rights violations. They escape due punishment and are able to repeat their offences. Police officers  cannot accept crimes committed by them they deny easily when exposed by the media or in news and in explanation they tend to show that the act was a mistake. Police violence occurs in all major cities nowadays and systems to deal and cope with misconduct had similar failure across all cities examined, complainants face enormous barriers in seeking administrative punishments or criminal prosecution of officers who have committed human rights violations.

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Police Forces

Police powers are subject to two primary police roles. Their functions are maintaining proper law and order and investigation of illegal activities. The Police Act describes the police as a vehicle for crime prevention and detection. The Police define most of its powers from the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 and the Police Act, 1861. Some of the police powers are as follows. Police officers have the power to investigate the cognizable case of the Code of Criminal Procedure Act 1973.

There are two categories of offences:

Cognizable offences –  some examples are murder, rape, kidnapping, theft, dowry death.

Non Cognizable offences – some examples are forgery, defamation, cheating, public nuisance.

Power of Police to Investigate

The Investigation of Police starts when;

  1. FIR is filed.
  2. Evidence of the commission of a cognizable offence.
  3. A competent magistrate shall order the police at any time.   
  4. The Police have the power:
  • To prosecute both Cognizable and Non-Cognizable offences. 
  • To test Cognizable offences without the orders of the Magistrate. 
  • To wait for the delegation of a cognizable offence.
  • To probe under Section 157 without the filing of FIR.
  • And the right to compel witnesses to carry out an investigation. 
  • To prosecute such a witness. 
  • To conduct a medical examination and forensic test of rape victims.

                   

Power of Police to Arrest

  1. Police Power to prosecute arrests for both Cognizable and Non-cognizable offences. 
  2. A warrant required in case of non-cognizable offences.
  3. No warrant required for arrest in case of cognizable offences.
  4. Detention period increased by 15 days on order of the Magistrate.
  5. In the absence of evidence, the accused is released by police.

Power of Preventive Arrest

The detained person is likely to commit an offence. Section 107 and Section 151 of CrPC grants police the power to detain preventively. The police can only arrest when there is no other way to avoid such an offence. By referring to the case, State Of M.P. & Anr vs Medha Patkar & Ors on 2 August, 2011 in the High Court of Jabalpur in appeals related to the building of Omkareshwar Dam on Narmada river in Madhya Pradesh in writ petition filed in High Court. The HC had issued directions for allotment of agricultural land in lieu of building dams for Rehabilitation and Resettlement policy. Certain landowners of Madhya Pradesh were protesting after being affected by the Sardar Sarovar Project. Even though they posed no threat to commit cognizable offences but nonetheless they were beaten and arrested. The Supreme Court held that this was an infringement of Article 21 of the Constitution. Section 151 addresses the grounds of the arrests. The Preventive arrest laws are given legal recognition under the Constitution of India and provisions cannot be said to be in violation of Article 21 and Article 22.

Abuse of Powers of Police under Preventive Arrest

Section 107 and Section 151 stated that if an individual is arrested he was not given the right to be heard for the next 6 days.

Case Study– In the case of Ahmed Noormohmed Bhatti v State of Gujarat, it was held that the instruction given to the detainees must also be followed in line with the cases of Preventive arrests. 

Case Study– The court in the case of D K Basu v State of West Bengal gave these in the Article 21 & 22 the Custodial death and Custodial Violence of Power of Arrest mentioned in the guidelines. The Constitution Article 21 & 22 custodial death and abuse power of arrest requirements whether monetary compensation should be given for the stated violation of fundamental rights guaranteed under Articles 21 & 22. The court specified in paragraph 36 of the judgment. The conditions of arrest and declared monetary or pecuniary compensation. It shall be reasonable and indebted. The court also held that a provision is neither unfair nor unconstitutional due to the authority’s arbitrary power of it. There must be sufficient scrutiny in each case to decide whether the arrest is unconstitutional or not.

The important points in guidelines are as follows:

  1. Arrest or detention proceedings before the legislative provisions are enacted in that name as preventive measures: The identity of all those police officers who interrogate the arrested person shall be reported in a log document. The police officer should carry memos of arrest and it shall be prepared at the time of arrest and at least one witness shall certify these memorandum. The date, place of arrest and place of custody of an arrested person shall be informed by the police by telegraph via the District Legal Aid Organization and the police station of the region concerned within 8 to 12 hours of the arrest. A police checkroom should be given at all district and state headquarters where information on the arrest and the place of custody of the arrested person should be reported by the arrested officer within 12 hours of the arrest and shown on the conspicuous notice board in the police checkroom in paragraph 36.
  2.  In addition to constitutional and statutory safeguards, these requirements do not, from time to time, detract from various other directions given by the courts in connection with safeguarding the arrested person’s rights and dignity.
  3. Monetary or pecuniary compensation is adequate and even efficient and, at times, perhaps the only acceptable remedy for redressing the recognized violation by the public servants of a citizen’s fundamental right to life and the State is vicariously liable for its acts. The citizen’s argument is based on the concept of strict liability, and does not include the protection of sovereign immunity, and the person will seek the sum of compensation from the Government, which would have the battle to be paid by the wrongdoer.

                 

Human Rights 

The human rights commissions established under the Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993 (the Act) provide another means of holding the police accountable in cases of misconduct. The most important of these commissions is the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), which was established on October 12, 1993.

Certain provisions in Human Rights which tell us about the basic rights of the person

International Commitments

One of the significant roles of the UN charter is to promote and encourage human rights and fundamental freedom include- 

  • International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. 
  • International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

Article 3 of the UDHR

Every person has the right to life, liberty, and security. The right is enshrined in Article 6 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights: it exemplifies that each individual has the inherent right to life. The right is protected by statute. For countries that have not abolished the death penalty, death sentences can only be imposed on the most serious offences for accordance with the law in effect at the time of the crime and not in contravention of the terms of this covenant and the convention on the prevention and punishment of the crime of genocide. This sentence should only be imposed in compliance with a final judgment passed down by a competent judge. Since loss of life constitutes the crime of murder, it is recognized that nothing shall be validated in this article. The convention on the rights of the child contains this right in Article 6 and also contained in Article 11 of the International Convention on the Protection of the ‘Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families’.

Article 6(1) of the ICCPR 

Every person has an inherent right to life; it shall be protected by the law. No one should be deprived of his freedom arbitrarily. Article 6 of the convention, paragraph 1 states that no one shall be unlawfully deprived of life and that that right shall be secured by law. It lays the foundation for the obligation of States parties to respect and safeguard the right to life, to give effect to it through legislative and other measures, and to provide effective remedies and reparations for all victims of the right to life violations.

Article 5 of the UDHR 

No one shall be subjected to misery, suffering or inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. A more efficient remedy for action in violation of fundamental rights was given for the right to equality before the law. It is mentioned in terrorism and human rights (2008) act that the human rights organizations actively functioning to the danger of international terrorism. Human rights groups, under international law, will take part under attempts to decide on a common concept of terrorism. A victim-centered approach will encourage them to extend human rights to a broader spectrum of issues, making their activism more applicable to those who suffer as a result of terrorism. The study explores how advocates could establish values that are more comprehensible. Others are human rights approaches to armed groups and national human rights institutions are of UDHR.

Article 9 of the Declaration 

The arbitrary arrest, imprisonment or exile shall not be extended to everyone. Everyone shall have the right, in full equality, to a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal, to determine his rights and obligations and to make any criminal charges against him. Everyone charged with a penal offence has the right to be presumed innocent until proven guilty according to the law in a public trial at which he has had all the guarantees necessary for his defence. No one shall be held guilty of any offence on account of any act or omission which did not constitute a criminal offence under national or international law at the time the offence was committed.

Article 7 of the ICCPR 

No one shall be subjected to misery, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. No one shall be subject to medical or scientific experimentation without his free consent. Everyone has the right to liberty and security of person. No arbitrary arrest or detention. Equality of liberty. This has also secured the right to fair trial and equality before the courts. Under Article 7 UNHRC (Prohibition of Torture, or Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment) there are standard minimum rules for the treatment of prisoners, declaration on the protection of all persons from being subjected to torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment; convention against torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment and code of conduct for law enforcement officials.

The reason behind the Police Brutality

Misconduct by law enforcement a serious problem. In the U.S. justice department, the civil rights division has examined shortcomings in accountability of police misconduct. 

Problematic Police Officers    

Also known as problem officers have significant records of misuse, have complaints from the public against them, and are subject to special monitoring, training and psychological counselling. 

To prevent the intense risk of incurring violence or abuse in any future incident:

  • Police must be monitored- All officers who commit violence are thoroughly investigated and punished for using excessive forces that trigger crime. 
  • Human rights Watch-  Monitor and identify those police officers who break human rights law. They analyse police misconduct reports and mark a difference between an officer with a clean record and a good repo. Police officers who commit a mistake and an officer with a long history of complaints and a repute as a “problem.”
  • Police corruption- In fact, it accounts for a large percentage of complaints about harassment and civil litigation.

Factors affecting Police Brutality

  • Racism is a prime factor in the US and in other countries black people suffer more as compared to white and in India also racism and castism are prevailing in Indian police. The 2019 India Justice Report states that Muslims are scarcely represented in India’s police forces (excluding the state of Jammu and Kashmir) with data on their representation no longer being held since 2013.
  • Ineffective training causes police brutality.
  • Weekly off days – Approximately 40% of police family members replied that the police officer (in their family) spends much less than enough time with the family. Just about 10 %of police staff family members indicated that police had spent enough time with the family.
  • A lack of female officers causes brutality. Reason for the need for greater inclusion of women in the police force, and for higher recruitment of women in the ranks of officers. Even in a scenario where, according to NFHS statistics, 99 % of sexual assault cases go unreported, the caseload for women in the police force in 16 of the selected states studied is relatively much higher. Hence, particularly in the case of women in the police force, the demand for fair representation emerges not just from the principle of diversity but also from the legal necessity of procedures to be followed when dealing with cases of crimes against women and children.
  • Reporting default report of police misconduct.

What action should be taken in case of police misconduct?

The first step is to report the police misconduct. It helps a victim to win a lawsuit against the officers who injured him. It also helps to show that a defendant in a criminal case is persuaded by officers to confess a crime. Many people don’t report to a police misconduct they have experienced, they are not sure how to go about it.

There are three ways of becoming a good eyewitness

First to know what kind of information is relevant in court. To catch the right details there is the online portal where you can lodged the complaint directly like in the U.S  Police misconduct complaint form for lodging online complaints, in the U.K police complaint form for complaints against police misconduct. While in India a person has to directly approach the Police Complaint Authority of the state where the crime is committed. Describe in your own words by writing the whole incident that happened during that time and give a running commentary of the action. Write down everything you remember that happened right after the incident it’s good to know names and numbers.

Police Misconduct Report 

Submitted to an attorney in prospect of litigation. The Police Conduct Report gives answers to all questions, leave blank if you don’t know the answer but don’t guess, give proper answers about locations and distance. In the first information about yourself,  kindly fill in your information like name, address etc. About the incident described the whole information about an incident i.e., location, time and any witness during an incident. For the media, witnesses and other witnesses it depends on how many police officers are involved in these incidents. Add extra pages i.e; 2 ,4, 5 depending on numbers of police involved. Detailed information about the victim, officer, Commanding officer, what led up to the incident, how the incident started, who initiate it, what led to disputes, information about official orders, what happened during the incident, property, wrongful searches or arrest and any injury to the victim by the police officer. This information needs to be furnished in both cases as if the victim wants to sue the police or else charged with a crime in the incident police illegally beats you up.

In case you don’t want to file an online complaint. send a report to the Regional Police review committee or Police Complaints Authority (PCA). They are a private community organization. Attach a copy of the Police Misconduct Report in the committee form and give a detailed account of the event. These reports will be useful in the future. It will be beneficial for the victim to present a previous report of an officer who has a history of abuse.

Following points should come in mind if a person suffers injury from Police and he approaches for his complaint:

  • How can one find a criminal defence lawyer and any witness who is representing the victim?
  • Where to find a police misconduct lawyer to protect and serve you?
  • Whether to reveal everything before the police began threatening or hurting the victims? It is better to tell the police details about the incident before they harass you.
  • Who initiated the incident first? The victim or a police officer? 
  • Any witness present during the incident.
  • Obstruction of justice or interfering with an office.

Complaining to appropriate authority India

Police Complaint Authority: The power of the Police Complaints Authority are as under:

  1. Furnish information useful for the subject matter of inquiry and authority to give its opinion.
  2. The opinion may be taken from the police officer in charge of the police force in the National Capital Territory of Delhi and, upon receipt of additional information from the police officer in charge of the police force in the territory of the Union, the facts of the opinion would be taken additionally by the authority.
  3. Some of the cases directly inquired by authority on finishing of the inquiry, communicate its findings to the Commissioner of Police Delhi with a direction to:
    • Register a First Information Report (FIR) and Initiate a departmental action based on such findings.
    • Forwarding the evidence collected to the police.
    • The authority’s directives are binding, except for the government, where reasons are recorded in writing, the NCT of Delhi disagrees with the authority decision.

Duties of the Police Complaints Authority

The authority must investigate the allegations of ‘serious misconduct’.  This is done either Suo Moto or on a complaint obtained from any of the following:

  1. A victim or any other person on his/her behalf.
  2. The National or the State Commission on Human Rights.
  3. The police.
  4. Any other source.
  5. “Serious misconduct” here mean any act or omission of a police officer that leads to or amounts to death in police custody;
  6. Severe hurt, as defined in Section 320 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860;
  7. Rape or attempt to commit rape;
  8. Arrest or detention without due process of law;
  9. Extortion;
  10. Land/house grabbing; 
  11. Any incident involving serious abuse of authority.
  • Satisfied prima facie about the genuinity of the complaint the Authority shall investigate into a complaint of such arrest or detention
  • The authority may also examine any other case introduced by the administrator/central government.
 Prakash Singh & Ors Vs. Union of India & Ors (2006) 

The Supreme Court ruled on 22 September 2006 on the case trial “Prakash Singh & Ors Vs. Union of India & Ors”: Taking account of far-reaching changes that took place in the country after the Indian Police Act of 1861 had been enacted and the lack of any comprehensive national evaluations of the police system, following drastic changes in political policy after independence. The Indian Government, on 15th Nov 1977, appointed a Commission to investigate the role and efficiency of the police and as an enforcement agency. The enforcement agency is an institution to protect the rights of the citizens enshrined in the Constitution.

Related to this case the latest judgments by  Ranjan Gogoi, Chief Justice of India while passing the order on the said I.A. On 16.1.2019, this Court referred:

To the principles behind the judgment of this Court in Prakash Singh & Ors. vs. Union of India & Ors. Reference to Article 142 of the Constitution of India, the Selection and a minimum term of DGP is done by selecting a Director General of State Police by a State Government among the three highest officers in the department among Public Service Commission by the union on the basis of its service length, very good record and a wide range of experience for the heading of the public service. After selection, he shall have a minimum term of office of at least two years, irrespective of the date of his allowance/pension. The DGP can, however, by acting in consultation with the State Security Commission after any action taken against it in compliance with the rules of All India Services (Discipline and Appeal), or after having been convicted in a criminal or corrupting criminal law trial, be deprived of its obligations by the State Government or if it is otherwise unable to perform its duties. The court noted that different States had enacted their respective Police Acts and made further amendments to their respective Police Acts 1 (2006) 8 SCC 1 3 respectively. Consequently, all those amendments did not fully comply with the judgment laid down by this Court in Prakash Singh (Supra).This led to the filing of the writ petition (i.e. Writ Petition (Civil) No.286 of 2013 challenging the validity of the provisions of Police Acts enacted by different States. The Public Grievances Commission shall also be called the Police Complaints Authority. The Authority here shall determine the “Authority” for the purposes of taking part in the complaints against Delhi Police, until the Delhi Police Act, 1978 is replaced by the new Police Act.

Police Complaint Authority Karnataka

Section 20-D(7)

  • These authorities are enacted by the directive of government under section 20-D(7) of the Karnataka Police Amendment Act,2012. The role of the state PCA to receive the complaints against police officials of the rank of Superintendent of Police and above rank.
  • Public Rights: Can file complaints against the Deputy Superintendent of Police, ranked below the grade of DPCAs.
  • These authorities have been structured by the direction of the Supreme Court to state governments to include a local mechanism to deal with a wide range of complaints against the police responsible for them. The aim is to bring over a positive change in the Police culture

Provisions of Sections 20C, 20D and 20E of Karnataka Police Act, 1963 as Amended by the Karnataka Police (Amendment) Act, 2012.

(1) 20C On notification of the official gazette

The State Government’s composition shall represent the State Police Complaints Authority consisting of five individuals, namely:

  1. Chairman is chosen from the panel of three retired High Court Judges on due consideration by the Chief Justice of the Karnataka High Court;
  2. One member of a retired civil service officer equals the rank of Principal Secretary of Government and one member from the Civil Society.
  3. One Civil Society member and the three persons nominated to be the Member of the Civil Society, chosen by the State Government from the panels of three names identified by the Selection Committee.

The three persons each represent:

  1. Human Rights Commission.
  2. Karnataka Public Service Commission. 
  3. Lokayukta. 

Role of the State Government to appoint: The Chairman as a member of the Search Committee an officer equivalent to or above the rank of Deputy Secretary of State Government and Home Department as a Search Committee Convenor. Panel members serving humanitarian services in the fields of education, health, education of the poor, etc. and not participating in any political party or ideological group. One woman IPS Officer. An additional general of the Police appointed by the Government of the State as ex-officio officer and executive secretary of the Authority.

(2) Disqualification of member

An individual shall be disqualified for being named as a member of his:

  1. An association with any AntiSocial or Anti-National party or body; 
  2. Being convicted and sentenced to imprisonment for an offence shall, in the opinion of the State Government, consider moral turpitude;
  3. An undischarged insolvent individual of unsound mind declared by a competent court;
  4.  Any other disqualifications as may be prescribed.

(3) Any non-official member of the State Police Complaints Authority shall serve for a term of three years.

(4) The State Police Complaints Authority shall look into complaints against officers of the rank of Superintendent of Police and above, including Additional Superintendent of Police, and take cognizance of allegations of serious misconduct by the police officers which would include incidents involving:

  • Death
  • Grievous hurt 
  • Rape in police custody

(5) “Misconduct” specified in this section, any deliberate violation or neglect by a police officer of any statute, rule, regulation applicable to the police that adversely affects the rights of any member of the public, except “serious misconduct” as specified in the definition (1).

(6) In Suo moto cases investigated by the State Police Complaints Authority inform the Director-General and the Inspector-General of the Police and advise him to give his views on the complaint during the inquiry. The State Police Complaints Authority takes into account the views and information given by the Director-General and Inspector-General of Police with material relating to the cases. Given the State Police Complaints Authority has no control over the complaint against police officers where, for this reason, a separate authority is established by some other Statute.

(7) On the conclusion of the inquiry, the State Police Complaints Authority shall forward its report to the disciplinary authority for punitive action against the accused officers if the charges are completely or partially proved.

(8) The State Police Complaints Authority shall also control, track and inspect the activity of the District Police Complaints Authorities. It shall compile and refer to the Government an annual report on the functioning of the State Police Complaints Authority and District Police Complaints Committees. Complaint Authorities and submit to the Government. The annual report includes: 

  1. The numbers and types of cases of “serious abuse” and “abuse” reported by the State Police Complaints Authority throughout the year; 
  2. The number and types of cases of “serious misconduct” referred by the complainants when they were unhappy with their complaint by the department; 
  3. The number and types of cases referred to above in which they provided advice or guidance;
  4. The number and types of cases of “serious misconduct” referred to it by the complainants upon being dissatisfied by the departmental inquiry into his complaint; 
  5. The number and types of cases referred to above in which advice or direction was issued by it to the police for further action; 
  6. All other relevant Administrative and financial matters may be recommended.

Important points highlights related to Section 20D

20D District Police Complaints Authority

1) By notification in the Official Gazette, the Government on discussion with the State Police Complaints Authority comprises the District Police Complaints Authority under the chairmanship of the Regional Commissioner for the Region and three other members, namely:

(i) one former Civil Service member shall be an officer.

(ii) the member of the Civil Society shall be chosen by the Government of the State between a panel of three names appointed by the Selection Committee composed of three individuals, one each representing.

 The Human Rights Commission;

  • Karnataka Public Service Commission; 
  • Lokayukta. 

One of the representatives shall be named by the State Government as Chairman of the Search Committee and an officer, not below the rank of Deputy Secretary to Government, Home Department, as the Committee’s convener. The persons in the panel shall be a responsible individual who has offered humanitarian service in the fields of education, health, the uplifting of the needy, etc. and who has not associated with any political party or ideological group.

(iii) The District Police Chief will be an ex-officio officer and the Authority’s executive secretary.

2) It will be the duty of the district police complaints authority to ensure that all its members and their staff are regularly trained, inter alia about:

  • technical and legal issues related to departmental inquiries; 
  • specific forms of human rights violation;
  • appropriate handling of victims of police abuse.

 3) The District Police Complaints Authority shall:

  • The right to investigate corruption or violation of power by or against police officers in and below the grade of Deputy Police Superintendent after allowing him a chance to be heard. The Authority shall have the power to investigate any case itself or order an investigation and submission of a report by any other body. The District Police Complaints Authority shall refer their complaints against the accused officers to the competent disciplinary authority for effective action;
  • If the complaint contains allegations against any police officer of or above the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police the District Police Complaints Authority, shall forward the same to the State Complaints Authority, for further action;
  • Forward the reports of “serious crime” specifically obtained by it to the State Police Reports Authority for further action: provided that the District Police Complaints Authority has no jurisdiction over complaints against officers unless a separate authority is created for this reason by any other Statute.

4) Each District police Complaints Authority submit to the State police complaints Authority an annual report to the State police complaints Authority before the end of each calendar year, inter alia, containing:

(a) numbers and types of cases of “serious misconduct” and “misconduct” forwarded by it to the State Police Complaints Authority during the year;

(b) number and types of cases of “misconduct” referred to it by the complainants upon being dissatisfied by the departmental inquiry into his complaint;

(c) number and types of cases referred to in clause (b) above in which advice or direction was issued by it to the police for further action;

(d) such other related administrative and financial matters as may be prescribed. 

20E Powers of the State Police Complaints Authority and District Police Complaints Authority: The State Police Complaints Authority and District Police Complaints Authority shall, while examining any matter under this Act, have all the powers of a civil court in trying a suit and in particular, in respect of the following matters.

The Karnataka Police Amendment Act, 2016Received the assent of the Governor on the Twenty-Sixth day of July, 2016) An Act further to amend the Karnataka Police Act, 1963: Important features:
  1. This Act may be called the Karnataka Police (Amendment) Act,2016.
  • Amendment: Amendment of Section 20 D

Words Inserted – “Regional Commissioner of the Region” 

Words replaced- “Deputy Commissioner of the concerned District”

  • Amendment: Amendment of iii in clause (i)

Words Inserted – “Joint Secretary’ to Government”

Words replaced – “Assistant Commissioner” 

  • Amendment: Amendment of section 31

Words Inserted- (za) Regulating, controlling and monitoring of safety and security of children

  • Amendment: Amendment of Section 36A, ii and iii in clause a,b,c

Words Inserted- eunuchs

Words replaced- undesirable activities, persons

Steps were taken to improve the Police Complaints Authority to stop violation by Police

Police complaints authority to look for disciplinary power

  1. First, in the absence of judicial powers, the authority will conduct inquiries against police officials and submit reports to the government for taking action.
  2. Second to create awareness about the authority and powers organized by the authority and district legal services authority.
  3. Need for the government to accord more powers to the authority.
  4. Deputy commissioners receive complaints if non-serious misconduct against constables to the rank of deputy superintendents of Police.
  5. The state authority accept complaints of all serious cases of misconduct like custodial death, rape inside police station against constables to the highest-ranked police officials.
  6. The authority also has Suo Motu powers to register complaints based on media reports or information reaching through anonymous.
  7. Bringing transparency in the system to ensure about authority was displayed in all police stations for public awareness.
  8. The Karnataka Police Complaints Authority (KSPCA) became operational in 2016, to investigate complaints of police excesses and harassment more work like similar to call center that forwards complaints to various districts about 930 complaints received officers below the rank of Superintendent of Police.
  9. Earlier headed by in chairperson of A.S Parchchapure former High Court judge.
The complaint shall be rejected in case:
  • Older complaint more than 12 months ago.
  • The complaint is insignificant and inconsiderable.
  • The complaint is frivolous or disagreeable or not made in good faith.
  • Not affected directly not to proceed further.
  • Incognito complaint. 
  • The appropriate way to resolve your complaint e.g. court proceedings.

Documents needed to file a complaint:

  • Medical report in case of injury in the police station.
  • Attached a photo of the injury. 
  • Attached a copy of the complaint in case response from police after lodging the complaint.
  • Proof of daily diary entry.

File a complaint in case:

  • A person died in police custody,
  • The rape happened in police custody,
  • Grabbing of land or house of the victim by a police officer,
  • Coercion, compulsion or blackmailing happen in the police station.

Procedure to file Complaint:

  1. Offline complaint filing process by writing application 
  2. The following should be mentioned while making a complaint against police-
    1. Complainant Name
    2. Complainant Address,
    3. Complainant contact details,
    4. The incident happens during time jot it down
    5. The time period of the incident
    6. Officer Name of whom against whom to file a complaint
    7. The reason explaining the What is said at that point of time by Police Officer 
    8. Any witness at the point of incident

This paperwork sends it to the Police Control Authority officer. 

Points to be noted

  • After lodging and filing a complaint no response came then contact to Police Control Authority
  • If no response came after lodging a complaint visit the RTI (Right to Information) office and describe the whole procedure to lodged the complaint again.
  • Ask the Police Control Authority about any action taken by them in your case if nothing is going to happen.
  • Visit concerned police station and file FIR if you are unsatisfied by the previous action taken
  • If the FIR doesn’t get noticed, go to senior officers of police if disappointed again then go to the magistrate and high court respectively in case of hearing. There is a procedure to file a complaint against the police. PCA will try to resolve your problem.

                 

Judiciary

The courts represent one of the most relevant external police accountability systems. Although it is possible to file petitions for writing and prosecution in the public interest in higher courts, criminal proceedings can be launched in lower courts. A number of significant judgments have been passed by the higher courts, providing protections or guidelines for controlling police conduct during the arrest, questioning and other phases of the investigation, asking the government to pay compensation in cases of custodial abuse, making adverse comments to the police for discriminating in the handling of community and caste disputes and not.

Accessing Right to Information Act (RTI)

The Right to Information Act, 2005 (RTIA) brings a constitutional right into law. It is recognized as an important law which facilitates the fulfillment of all other fundamental human rights. It mandates accountability in governance, is seen as facilitating informed citizen participation and is essential for the functioning of democracy.

Complaint through Social Media

If a complaint gets through social media, through WhatsApp, Abhayam app, click, ireport. Most of the complaints received through Whatsapp. Police officials received complaints through WhatsApp given utmost priority and resolved in a short time. Only a few of the complaints can be registered for FIRs, others are fake. Cases related to offences to ganja trade and belt shops also received through WhatsApp and international complaints received through Whatsapp. Complaints through Facebook and email also received. The Abhayam app launched in Jan 2015 and cops received 7499 phone calls from across the state of these 55 calls considered as FIR registration reports received 404 complaints with videos and photos of which 390 complaints were called test calls. FIR registered only for 8 classes. Iclink submitted 1008 reports, 382 of which were deemed FIR, and 611 were dismissed.

Conclusion

Police themselves are aware that ordinary people are scared and reluctant about approaching them. With numerous policy studies and non-government findings exposing the true nature of crime non-reporting, it is crucial that more effective and systemic steps be taken by the Indian Police Complaint Authority to develop people-friendly forms of policing. 

Given a long list of various modes of complaint and judgments supporting police reforms, the level of awareness was found to be dim about the landmark verdict of Prakash Singh vs Union of India, 2006, a critical document offering clear directions for reforms in India’s police system. Just around 14% of police reports have been heard. When police personnel were asked about the measures to be taken by the government to help them to do their job better, the most popular response was “increasing personnel and training” followed by “increasing facilities and services” given to police accompanied by working hours.

References

  1. https://karunadu.karnataka.gov.in/spca/Documents/Provisions-of-Law.pdf
  2. https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/police-complaint-authority-seeks-disciplinary-powers/article19111591.ece
  3. https://www.india.com/news/india/jaipur-case-registered-against-5-6-policemen-for-beating-gang-raping-woman-3717139/
  4. https://indiankanoon.org/doc/1897303/
  5. https://indiankanoon.org/doc/501198/
  6. https://www.ndtv.com/india-news/fir-against-up-police-officer-for-allegedly-sexually-harassing-woman-2150451
  7. https://www.ndtv.com/india-news/constable-suspended-for-allegedly-beating-up-woman-in-maharashtras-jalgaon-743486
  8. https://www.hrw.org/news/2016/12/19/india-killings-police-custody-go-unpunished
  9. https://www.advocatekhoj.com/library/judgments/announcement.php?WID=11310
  10. Code of Criminal Procedure 1973
  11. Status of Policing in India Report 2019
  12. Indian Justice Report 2019

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