CRIMINAL PROCEDURE CODE, 1973

code of criminal procedure

LECTURE-2

Abbreviations Used In Dictation:-

P.O/ I.O………………………………………………….. Police officer/ Investigation Officer.
I.O.P ……………………………………………………. Issue of Process.
P.R……………………………………………………….. Police Report.
O.R ………………………………………………………. Occurrence Report.
C.O.S…………………………………………………….. Court of Session.
C.J.M …………………………………………………….. Chief Judicial Magistrate.
J.M.I.C …………………………………………………… Judicial Magistrate First Class.
J.M.II.C ………………………………………………….. Judicial Magistrate Second Class.
M.M ……………………………………………………… Metropolitan Magistrate.
S.P………………………………………………………… Superintendent of Police.

Constitutional Validity of CrPC

The constitution is the grundnorm of the Indian Society and every other law to keeping essence with the spirit of the constitution. Its violation will not be allowed and if the law is not following its spirit then it is constitutionally invalid.

As the constitution has some basic structure/ principles and these principle running across each provision of the constitution e.g. natural justice, rule of law, the principle of accountability, and the principle of transparency, reasonableness, non-arbitrariness, and fairness. And if the CrPC wants to be constitutionally justified, it has to be abiding by all the above principles. If it abides, it is constitutionally valid otherwise it is invalid.

Example: – ‘A’ is arrested by I.O. what safeguards are available to ‘A’?

  • I.O has to be in uniform.
  • He has to wear identification marks.
  • People around should be aware of the arrest.
  • Memo of arrest has to be signed by an independent person.
  • Relative of the arrestee should be informed about the arrest.
  • I.O will make an entry as to who has been informed about the arrest.
  • The magistrate has the duty to check those entries.
  • I.O is responsible for the health of the accused.
  • There are rights to accused of the right to bail.
  • Accused has a right of the speedy trial (sec 309).
  • There will be hearing upon charge.
  • Right to cross-examination.
  • Evidence will be taken in presence of accused only.
  • Statement of section 313.
  • Providing documents.
  • Free legal aid.

So all these principles are making the CrPC in conformity with the basic principles of the constitution. Therefore, CrPC is constitutionally valid.

RULE OF INTERPRETATION

When a provision is ambiguous i.e. two or three interpretations is possible then that interpretation will be adopted which will fulfill the purpose of CrPC. The purpose of the CrPC is to balance the right b/w societal and individual rights. Any interpretation has to be done in light of the stated purpose.

CrPC is about balancing the rights of individuals on one hand and society on another hand. A crime is considered to be a wrong against society and it is in societal interest that criminals shall be detected and punished. For that purpose, proceeding of investigation has to be initiated i.e. arrest has to be made, the investigation has to be done, evidence has to be collected and inquiry & trial shall also be conducted.

In this entire process, the rights of the suspected person will be subjected to restrain despite the fact he is not yet declared guilty or convicted. Therefore, the question is whether such a violation shall be allowed or not for societal interest. Thus the real issue is to strike a balance b/w conflicting interest of society and individual. Even article 21 of the constitution permits curtailment of the right to life and personal liberty by a procedure established by law. Such curtailment is also necessary as societal interest is of paramount consideration. In the light of that curtailment, the question is of the mechanism by which such curtailment has to be done. In;

Maneka Gandhi v/s UOI, 1978 SC

It was held that any proceeding depriving a person of his right to life and personal liberty shall be a reasonable, non-arbitrary, and just procedure. Such a mechanism also has to be abiding by the other overarching principles of the constitution. Such as accountability, transparency, natural justice, etc. otherwise, it will be ultra-vires of the constitution.

There are several provisions, explicit and implicit such as a speedy trial, hearing on the charge, bail, right to cross-examination, legal aid, etc. which lay down the basic framework of CrPC. These principles, in essence, are nothing but the principle of the basic structure of the constitution. Therefore, the existence of CrPC within itself is constitutionally justified.

So in CrPC, the rule of interpretation, in case of ambiguity has to be the purposive rule of interpretation i.e. interpretation of an ambiguous provision shall be adopted which serves the interest of justice to the best. The interest of justice in CrPC lies in balancing b/w societal interest i.e. punishing the culprit, and in safeguarding the individual interest of the accused.

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