“Although the courts have not assumed to define ‘liberty’ with any great precision, that term is not confined to mere freedom from bodily restraint. Liberty under law extends to the full range of conduct, which the individual is free to pursue, and it cannot be restricted except for a proper governmental objective”. Warren. Former Chief Justice of Supreme Court of United States.
Human Right violations by a law enforcement agency like Police is a universal malady but in a democratic set-up, the operational styles of the public institutions should be geared to respond to the needs of the good governance and that is assured by the special aspect that they draw sustenance from the people’s support and elicit public participation in their working. This weight of democratic accountability on the law enforcement agencies must lead towards a consistent and humane environment so that the human rights culture, which is desired by the most, must be positively promoted. Across the world there is a revamping of institutions of Government in the light of the well–recognized human rights standards. Human Rights are inherent in a person by virtue of his/her being a human. They comprise both civil and political rights as well as economic, social and cultural rights. Criminal justice as a vital institution is also reoriented in the same spirit. However, there are problems of human rights violations by criminal justice agencies.
One of the processes that impose a major threat to the liberty of the individual is that of arrest. This is very much required in various cases for the protection of the larger interests of the society; at the same time, the same law of arrest can be misused by the police for the numerous crimes that may be committed behind the bars of the police station, one of them being the police atrocities. Under this scenario, the researcher tries to look into the specific area of human rights issues in the pre-trial process mainly that of arrest in the due course of paper, the question has arisen time and again as to why the importance is given to the protection of Human Rights at the pre-trial stage? One of the reasons can be that, if a wrong is done to an arrested person at the beginning of the process, it cannot be corrected at any stage whatsoever as this is the basis of the whole trial. As it is true that a lot of Human Rights violations take place during the arrest procedure only, which is an insult to the dignity of an individual. To make sure that the power to arrest is not arbitrary exercised by the police officer Article 22 of the constitution of India and chapter V of criminal procedure code provides direction for safeguards against arbitrary arrest.
The emphasis on the importance of the Human Rights in police functioning means that a system of ideal regulation of the police organization, which helps it to hold high ideals and continuously monitor its own functioning.
Cite this article:
Kunwar Aditya Singh, Human Rights and Police Process. Research J. Humanities and Social Sciences. 3(4): October-December, 2012, 450-457.