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Punjab and Haryana HC stepped in for police reform, Haryana DGP is directed to comply Guidelines of DK Basu case

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The Punjab and Haryana High court directed the DGP of Haryana to comply the Supreme Court guidelines in DK Basu vs State of West Bengal case.

The said guidelines have elevan directions to protect citizens from “Custodial violence, including torture and death in the lock ups”.

The petitioner, a farmers union “Sabka Magal Ho”, alleging that on September 10, 2020 the farmers were injured by police without uniform during their agitations against the Farmers’ Bills in Haryana.

The petitioner said in its petition that, the said guidelines are not being implemented in the state after 23 years.

Justice Arun Monga taking a tough stand and said that,

“In the premise, without commenting on the merits of allegations/ averments contained in the writ petition, the same is disposed of with a request to the Director General of Police, State of Haryana, to once again sensitize police officials of the state, on regular intervals, qua the aforesaid safeguards/parameters, to be followed by police officials while on duty.”

The guidelines in DK Basu vs State of West Bengal case (simplified)

  • “During detention or arrest, the police personnel should bear accurate, visible and clear identification and name tags with their designations. The particulars of all such police personnel who handle interrogation of the arrestee must be recorded in a register.”
  • “a memo of arrest, at the time of arrest such memo shall be attested by at least one witness, who may be either a member of the family of the arrestee or from locality.”
  • “The arrested or detained person shall be entitled to inform family, friend about arrest and the place.”
  • “The family/friend will be informed telegraphically within a period of 8 to 12 hours after the arrest, if the live outside the district.”
  • “The arrested person will be made aware of this right to have someone informed.”
  • “An entry must be made in the diary at the place of detention regarding the arrest of the person which shall also disclose the name of family/friend.”
  • “Inspection Memo must be signed both by the arrestee and the police officer, if the arrested person seeks for medical examinaion.”
  • “The arrestee should be subjected to medical examination by trained doctor every 48 hours during his detention in custody by a doctor on the panel.”
  • “Copies of all the documents including the memo of arrest, referred to above, should be sent to the Illaqa Magistrate for his record.”
  • “The arrestee may be permitted to meet his lawyer during interrogation, though not throughout the interrogation.”
  • “A police control room should be provided at all district and state headquarters, where information regarding the arrest and the place of custody of the arrestee shall be communicated by the officer causing the arrest, within 12 hours of effecting the arrest.”

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