18 December 1996
Supreme Court


Case number: W.P.(Crl.) No.-000539-000539 / 1986
Diary number: 65971 / 1986






DATE OF JUDGMENT:       18/12/1996




JUDGMENT:                             WITH WRIT PETITION (CRL) NO. 592 OF 1987                       J U D G M E N T DR. ANAND, J.      The  Executive   Chairman,  Legal  Aid  Services,  West Bengal, a  non-political organisation  registered under  the Societies Registration Act, on 26th August, 1986 addressed a letter to  the Chief  Justice of India drawing his attention to certain  news items  published in the Telegraph dated 20, 21 and  22 of  July, 1986  and in  the Statesman  and  India express dated  17th August,  1986 regarding deaths in police lock-ups  and   custody.  The   Executive   Chairman   after reproducing the  new items  submitted that it was imperative to examine  the issue  in  depth  and  to  develop  "custody jurisprudence"  and   formulate  modalities   for   awarding compensation to  the victim  and/or family  members  of  the victim for  attrocities and  death caused  in police custody and to  provide for  accountability of the efforts are often made to  hush up  the matter  of lock-up deaths and thus the crime goes  unpunished and  "flourishes". It  was  requested that the   letter  alongwith the  new items  be treated as a writ petition under "public interest litigation" category.      Considering the  importance of  the issue raised in the letter being  concerned  by  frequent  complaints  regarding custodial violence  and deaths in police lock up, the letter was treated  as a  writ petition  and notice  was issued  on 9.2.1987 to the respondents.      In response  to the  notice, the  State of  West Bengal filed a  counter. It  was maintained  that the police was no hushing up  any matter  of lock-up  death and that whereever police personnel  were found  to  be  responsible  for  such death,  action   was  being   initiated  against  them.  The respondents characterised the writ petition as misconceived, misleading and untenable in law.      While the  writ  petition  was  under  consideration  a letter addressed by Shri Ashok Kumar Johri on 29.7.87 to the Hon’ble Chief Justice of India drawing the attention of this Court to the death of one Mahesh Bihari of Pilkhana, Aligarh in police custody was received. That letter was also treated as a  writ petition  and was directed to be listed alongwith



the writ petition filed by Shri D.K. Basu. On 14.8.1987 this Court made the following order :      "In almost  every states  there are      allegations and  these  allegations      are now  increasing in frequency of      deaths   in    custody    described      generally by  newspapers as lock-up      deaths. At  present there  does not      appear  to   be  any  machinery  to      effectively    deal    with    such      allegations. Since  this is  an all      India   question   concerning   all      States, it  is desirable  to issues      notices   to    all    the    State      Governments  to  find  out  whether      they are  desire to say anything in      the matter.  Let notices  issue  to      all  the   State  Governments.  Let      notice  also   issue  to   the  Law      Commission of  India with a request      that suitable  suggestions  may  be      returnable  in   two  months   from      today."      In response  to the  notice, affidavits have been filed on behalf  of the  States  of  West  Bengal,  Orissa,  Assam Himachal Pradesh,  Madhya  Pradesh,  Harayana,  Tamil  Nadu, Meghalaya ,  Maharashtra and  Manipur. Affidavits  have also been filed  on behalf  of Union  Territory of Chandigarh and the Law Commission of India.      During the course of hearing of the writ petitions, the Court felt  necessity of  having assistance from the Bar and Dr. A.M.  Singhvi, senior  advocate was  requested to assist the Court as amicus curiae.      Learned counsel  appearing for different States and Dr. Singhvi, as  a friend  of the court. presented the case ably and though  the effort  on the  part of the States initially was  to   show  that  "everything  was  well"  within  their respective States,  learned counsel  for the parties, as was expected of  them in  view of  the importance  of the  issue involved, rose  above their  respective briefs  and rendered useful assistance  to this Court in examining various facets of the issue and made certain suggestions for formulation of guidelines by  this  court  to  minimise,  if  not  prevent, custodial violence  and kith  and kin  of those  who die  in custody on account of torture.      The Law  Commission of  India also  in response  to the notice issued  by this  Court forwarded  a copy of the 113th Report regarding  "injuries in  police custody and suggested incorporation of Section 114-B in the India Evidence Act."      The importance  of affirmed rights of every human being need no  emphasis and,  therefore, to deter breaches thereof becomes a  sacred duty  of the  Court, as  the custodian and protector of  the fundamental  and the basic human rights of the citizens.  Custodial  violence,  including  torture  and death in  the lock  ups, strikes  a blow at the Rule of Law, which demands  that the  powers of  the executive should not only be  derived from  law but  also that the same should be limited by  law. Custodial  violence is a matter of concern. It is aggravated by the fact that it is committed by persons who are supposed to be the protectors of the citizens. It is committed under  the shield  of uniform and authority in the four walls  of a police station or lock-up, the victim being totally helpless.  The  protection  of  an  individual  from torture and  abuse by  the police  and other  law  enforcing officers is  a matter  of deep  concern in  a free  society.



These petitions  raise important  issues  concerning  police powers, including  whether monetary  compensation should  be awarded for  established  infringement  of  the  Fundamental Rights guaranteed  by Articles 21 and 22 of the Constitution of India. The issues are fundamental.      "Torture" has  not been  defined in  Constitution or in other penal  laws. ’Torture’  of a  human being  by  another human being  is essentially an instrument to impose the will of the  ’strong’ over  the ’weak’  by  suffering.  The  word torture today  has become  synonymous wit the darker side of human civilisation.      "Torture is  a wound in the soul so      painful  that   sometimes  you  can      almost touch  it, but it is also so      intangible that there is not way to      heal   it.   Torture   is   anguish      squeezing in  your chest,  cold  as      ice and heavy as a stone paralyzing      as sleep  and dark  as  the  abyss.      Torture is  despair  and  fear  and      rage and  hate. It  is a  desire to      kill    and    destroy    including      yourself."      Adriana P. Bartow      No violation  of any  one of  the human rights has been the subject  of so  many  Conventions  and  Declarations  as ’torture’- all  aiming at  total banning of it in all forms, but inspite  of the  commitments made  to eliminate torture, the fact  remains that  torture is  more widespread not that ever before,  "Custodial torture"  is a  naked violation  of human dignity and degradation with destroys, to a very large extent, the  individual  personality.  IT  is  a  calculated assault on  human dignity  and  whenever  human  dignity  is wounded, civilisation takes a step backward-flag of humanity must on each such occasion fly half-mast.      In all  custodial crimes that is of real concern is not only infliction  of body  pain but  the mental agony which a person undergoes  within the four walls of police station or lock-up. Whether  it is  physical assault  or rape in police custody, the extent of trauma a person experiences is beyond the purview of law.      "Custodial violence"  and abuse  of police power is not only peculiar  to this country, but it is widespread. It has been the  concern of  international  community  because  the problem is universal and the challenge is almost global. The Universal Declaration  of Human Rights in 1984, which market the emergency of worldwide trend of protection and guarantee of certain  basic human rights, stipulates in Article 5 that "No one  shall be  subjected to torture or to curel, inhuman or degrading  treatment or  punishment." Despite  the  pious declaration, the  crime  continues  unabated,  though  every civilised nation  shows its  concern and takes steps for its eradication.      In England,  torture was  once  regarded  as  a  normal practice  to   ger  information  regarding  the  crime,  the accomplices and the case property or to extract confessions, but with  the development  of common  law and  more  radical ideas imbibing  human  though  and  approach,  such  inhuman practices were  initially discouraged  and eventually almost done  away   with  ,  certain  aberrations  here  and  there notwithstanding. The  police powers of arrest, detention and interrogation in England were examined in depth by Sir Cyril Philips Committee- ’Report of a Royal Commission on Criminal Procedure’ (command - Paper 8092 of 1981). The report of the Royal Commission  is, instructive. In regard to the power of



arrest, the  Report recommended  that the  power  to  arrest without a  warrant must  be related  to and  limited by  the object to  be served  by the  arrest, namely, to prevent the suspect  from   destroying  evidence   or  interfering  with witnesses or  warning accomplices  who  have  not  yet  been arrested or  where there  is a  good reason  to suspect  the repetition of the offence and not to every case irrespective of the object sought to be achieved.      The Royal  Commission suggested certain restrictions on the  power   of  arrest  on  the  basis  of  the  ‘necessity principle’. The Royal commission said :      ".... We  recommend that  detention      upon arrest  for a  offence  should      continue only on one or more of the      following criteria :      (a)  the  person‘s‘s  unwillingness      to identify himself so that summons      may be served upon him;      (b)  the  need   to   prevent   the      continuation or  repetition of that      offence;      (c)  the  need   to   protect   the      arrested person‘s  himself or other      persons or property;      (d)  the need to secure or preserve      evidence of  or  relating  to  that      offence or  to obtain such evidence      from  the  suspect  by  questioning      him; and      (e)  the likelihood of the person‘s      failing  to   appear  at  court  to      answer anycharge made against him."      The Royal Commission also suggested      :      "To  help  to  reduce  the  use  of      arrest we  would also  propose  the      introduction here  of a scheme that      is  used   in  Ontario  enabling  a      police officer  to  issue  what  is      called an  appearance notice.  That      procedure can  be  used  to  obtain      attendance at  the police   station      without   resorting    to    arrest      provided a  power to arrest exists,      for example to be finger printed or      to participate in an identification      parade. It  could also  be extended      to attendance  for interview  at  a      time convenient both to the suspect      and   to    the   police    officer      investigating the case...."      The power  of arrest,  interrogation and  detention has now  been  streamlined  in  England  on  the  basis  of  the suggestions made by the Royal Commission and incorporated in police and  Criminal Evidence Act, 1984 and the incidence of custodial violence  has been minimised there to a very great extent.      Fundamental rights occupy a place of pride in the India Constitution.  Article  21  provides  "no  person  shall  be deprived of his life or personal liberty expect according to procedure established  by law". Personal liberty, thus, is a sacred and  cherished  right  under  the  Constitution.  The expression "life  of personal  liberty"  has  been  held  to include the  right to  live with  human dignity  and thus it would also include within itself a guarantee against torture



and assault  by the  State or  its functionaries. Article 22 guarantees  protection   against  arrest  and  detention  in certain cases  and declares  that no  person who is arrested shall be  detained in  custody without being informed of the grounds of such arrest and the shall not be denied the right to consult and defend himself by a legal practitioner of his choice. Clause  (2) of  Article 22  directs that  the person arrested and  detained in  custody shall  be produced before the nearest  Magistrate within  a period of 24 hours of such arrest, excluding  the time  necessary for  the journey from the place  of arrest to the court of the Magistrate. Article 20(3) of the Constitution lays down that a person accused of an offence  shall not  be compelled  to be a witness against himself. These  are some  of  the  constitutional  safeguard provided to  a person  with a  view to  protect his personal liberty against  and unjustified  assault by  the State,  In tune with  the constitutional  guarantee a  number statutory provisions also  seek to  project personal  liberty, dignity and basic  human rights  of  the  citizens.  Chapter  V.  of Criminal Procedure  Code, 1973  deals  with  the  powers  of arrest of  a person  and the safeguard which are required to be followed  by the  police to  protect the  interest of the arrested person.  Section 41, Cr. P.C. confers powers on any police officer  to arrest  a person  under the circumstances specified therein  without any  order or a warrant of arrest from a Magistrate. Section 46 provides the method and manner of arrest.  Under this  Section no  formality  is  necessary while arresting  a person.  Under Section  49, the police is not permitted  to use  more restraint  than is  necessary to permitted to use more restraint than is necessary to prevent the escape  of the  person. Section  50 enjoins every police officer arresting  any person without warrant to communicate to him  the full  particulars of the offence for which he is arrested and the grounds for such arrest. The police officer is further enjoined to inform the person arrested that he is entitled to  be released  on bail  and he  may  arrange  for sureties in  the event  of his  arrest  for  a  non-bailable offence. Section 56 contains a mandatory provision requiring the police  officer making  an  arrest  without  warrant  to produce the  arrested person  before  a  Magistrate  without unnecessary delay  and  Section  57  echoes  Clause  (2)  of Article 22 of the Constituion of India. There are some other provisions also  like Section 53, 54 and 167 which are aimed at affording  procedural safeguards  to a person arrested by the police. Whenever a person dies in custody of the police, Section 176 requires the Magistrate to hold and enquiry into the cause of death.      However, inspite  of the  constitutional and  statutory provisions aimed  at safeguarding  the personal  liberty and life of  a citizen,  growing incidence of torture and deaths in police  custody has  been a disturbing factor. Experience shows that  worst violations  of  human  rights  take  place during the  course of  investigation, when the police with a view to secure evidence or confession often resorts to third degree methods  including torture  and adopts  techniques of screening arrest  by either  not   recording the  arrest  or describing the  deprivation of liberty merely as a prolonged interrogation. A  reading of  the morning  newspapers almost everyday carrying  reports of dehumanising torture, assault, rape and  death in  custody of  police or other governmental agencies is  indeed depressing.  The increasing incidence of torture and  death in  custody  has  assumed  such  alarming proportions that  it is  affecting the  creditibility of the Rule of  Law and  the  administration  of  criminal  justice system. The community rightly feels perturbed. Society’s cry



for justice becomes louder.      The Third  Report of  the National Police Commission in India expressed its deep concern with custodial demoralising effect with custodial torture was creating on the society as a whole.  It made some very useful suggestions. It suggested :      ".......An   arrest    during   the      investigation of  a cognizable case      may be  considered justified in one      or   other    of   the    following      circumstances :-      (1)  The  case   involves  a  grave      offence   like   murder,   dacoity,      robbery,  rape   etc.,  and  it  is      necessary to arrest the accused and      bring his movements under restraint      to  infuse   confidence  among  the      terror stricken victims.      (ii)  The   accused  is  likely  to      abscond and  evade the processes of      law.      (iii)     The accused  is given  to      violent behaviour  and is likely to      commit further  offences unless his      movements   are    brought    under      restraint.      (iv) The  accused   is  a  habitual      offender and unless kept in custody      he  is  likely  to  commit  similar      offences   again.   It   would   be      desirable   to    insist    through      departmental  instructions  that  a      police  officer  making  an  arrest      should  also  record  in  the  case      diary the  reasons for  making  the      arrest,  thereby   clarifying   his      conformity   to    the    specified      guidelines......"      The recommendations  of the  Police Commission  (supra) reflect the  constitutional concomitants  of the fundamental right   to    personal   liberty    and    freedom.    These recommendations, however,  have not  acquired any  statutory status so far.      This Court  in Joginder  Kumar Vs. State [1994 (4) SCC, 260] (to  which one  of us,  namely, Anand,  J. was a party) considered the  dynamics of misuse of police power of arrest and opined :      "No arrest  can be  made because it      is lawful for the police officer to      do so.  The existence  of the power      of  arrest   is  one   thing.   The      justification for  the exercise  of      it is  quite  another...No.  arrest      should be made without a reasonable      satisfaction  reached   after  some      investigation about the genuineness      and bonafides  of a complaint and a      reasonable belief  both as  to  the      person’s complicity  and even so as      to  the   need  to  effect  arrest.      Denying person  his  liberty  is  a      serious matter."      Joginder Kumar’s  case (supra)  involved  arrest  of  a practising lawyer  who had  bee called to the police station in connection  with a  case under  inquiry on 7.1.94. On not



receiving any  satisfactory account  of his whereabouts, the family member of the detained lawyer preferred a petition in the nature of habeas corpus before this Court on 11.1.94 and in compliance  with the  notice, the  lawyer was produced on 14.1.94 before this court the police version was that during 7.1.94 and  14.1.94 the  lawyer was  not in detention at all but was  only assisting the police to detect some cases. The detenue asserted  otherwise. This  Court was  not  satisfied with the  police version.  It was  noticed that though as on that day  the relief  in habeas corpus petition could not be granted but the questions whether there had been any need to detain the  lawyer for  5 days  and if  at all he was not in detention  then  why  was  this  Court  not  informed.  Were important questions  which required  an answer.  Besides, if there was  detention for  5 days,  for what  reason  was  he detained. The Court’ therefore, directed the District Judge, Ghaziabad to  make a  detailed enquiry and submit his report within 4  weeks. The  Court  voiced  its  concern  regarding complaints of  violations of  human rights  during and after arrest. It said:      "The horizon  of  human  rights  is      expanding. at  the same  time,  the      crime rate  is also  increasing, Of      late, this Court has been receiving      complaints  about   violations   of      human     rights     because     of      indiscriminate arrests.  How are we      to strike  a  balance  between  the      two?      ...................................      A realistic approach should be made      in  this   direction.  The  law  of      arrest   is    one   of   balancing      individual  rights,  liberties  and      privileges, on  the one  hand,  and      individual   duties,    obligations      weighing and  balancing the rights,      liberties  and   privileges  of  he      single  individual   and  those  of      individuals collectively; of simply      deciding what  is wanted  and where      to put the weight and the emphasis;      of deciding  with  comes  first-the      criminal  or   society,   the   law      violator or the abider....." This Court  then set  down certain procedural "requirements" in cases of arrest.      Custodial death is perhaps one of the worst crimes in a civilised society  governed by  the Rule  of Law. The rights inherent in  Articles  21  and  22(1)  of  the  Constitution required to  be jealously  and  scrupulously  protected.  We cannot wish  away the problem. Any form of torture of cruel, inhuman  or   degrading  treatment  would  fall  within  the inhibition of  Article 21  of the  Constitution, whether  it occurs during  investigation, interrogation or otherwise. If the functionaries  of the Government become law breakers, it is bound  to breed  contempt for  law  and  would  encourage lawlessness and  every man would have the tendency to become law  unto   himself  thereby   leading  to  anarchanism.  No civilised nation  can permit  that tp happen. Does a citizen shed off  his  fundamental  right  to  life,  the  moment  a policeman arrests him? Can the right to life of a citizen be put in  abeyance on  his arrest?  These questions  touch the spinal court  of human  rights  jurisprudence.  The  answer, indeed, has  to be  an emphatic  ’No’.  The  precious  right



guaranteed by Article 21 of the Constitution of India cannot be denied  to  convicted  undertrials,  detenues  and  other prisoners in  custody, except  according  to  the  procedure established by  law by  placing such reasonable restrictions as are permitted by law.      In Neelabati  Bahera Vs. State of Orissa [1993 (2) SCC, 746], (to  which Anand,  J. was  a party) this Court pointed out that  prisoners and  detenues are  not denuded  of their fundamental rights  under Article  21 and  it is  only  such restrictions as  are permitted  by law, which can be imposed on the  enjoyment of the fundamental rights of the arrestees and detenues. It was observed :      "It  is  axiomatic  that  convicts,      prisoners or  undertrials  are  not      denuded of their fundamental rights      under Article  21 and  its is  only      such restrictions, as are permitted      by law, which can be imposed on the      enjoyment of  the fundamental right      by   such   persons.   It   is   an      obligation of  the State  to ensure      that there  is no  infringement  of      the  indefeasible   rights   of   a      citizen   o    life,   except    in      accordance  with   law,  while  the      citizen  is  in  its  custody.  The      precious   right    guaranteed   by      Article 21  of the  constitution of      India cannot be denied to convicts,      undertrials or  other prisoners  in      custody,   expect    according   to      procedure established by law. There      is a  great   responsibility on the      police  or  prison  authorities  to      ensure  that  the  citizen  in  its      custody  is  not  deprived  of  his      right to  life. His  liberty is  in      the   very    nature   of    things      circumscribed by  the very  fact of      his confinement  and therefore  his      interest  in  the  limited  liberty      left to him is rather precious. The      duty of  care on  the part  of  the      State is  responsible if the person      in  custody   of  the   police   is      deprived   of   his   life   except      according    to    the    procedure      established by law.      Instances have  come to  out notice were the police has arrested a  person without  warrant in  connection with  the investigation of  an offence,  without recording the arrest, and the  arrest person  has been  subjected  to  torture  to extract information  from him  for the  purpose  of  further investigation or  for recovery   of  case  property  or  for extracting confession  etc. The torture and injury caused on the body  of the  arrestee has  sometime resulted  into  his death. Death  in custody  is  not  generally  shown  in  the records of  the lock-up  and every  effort is  made  by  the police to dispose of the body or to make out a case that the arrested person died after he was released from custody. Any complaint against  such torture  or death  is generally  not given any  attention by  the police officers because of ties of brotherhood.  No first information report at the instance of the  victim or  his kith and kin is generally entertained and even the higher police officers turn a blind eye to such



complaints. Even  where a  formal prosecution is launched by the victim  or his  kith and  kin,  no  direct  evidence  is available to  substantiate the  charge of torture or causing hurt resulting  into  death  as  the  police  lock-up  where generally torture  or injury  is caused  is  away  from  the public gaze  and the  witnesses are either police men or co- prisoners who  are highly reluctant to appear as prosecution witness due  to fear of letaliation by the superior officers of the  police. It  is often  seen that  when a complaint is made against torture, death or injury, in police custody, it is  difficult  to  secure  evidence  against  the  policemen responsible for resorting to third degree methods since they are incharge  of police  station records  which they  do not find  difficult  to  manipulate.  Consequently,  prosecution against  the   delinquent  officers   generally  results  in acquittal. State of Madhya Pradesh Vs. Shyamsunder Trivedi & Ors. [ 1995 (3) Scale, 343 =] is an apt case illustrative of the observations  made by  us above.  In  that  case,  Nathu Bnjara was  tortured at  police station,  Rampura during the interrogation. As  a result  of extensive injuries caused to him he  died in  police custody  at the  police station. The defence set  up by  the respondent  police officials  at the trial was  that Nathu  Banjara had been released from police custody at  about 10.30  p.m. after interrogation 13.10.1986 itself vide  entry EX.  P/22A in  the Roznamcha  and that at about 7.00  a.m. on  14.10.1981, a  death report Ex. P/9 was recorded at  the police station, Rampura, at the instance of Ramesh respondent  No. 6,  to the  effect that  he had found "one unknown  person" near  a tree  by the  side of the tank riggling with  pain in  his chest  and that  as  a  soon  as respondent No. 6 reached near him, the said person died. The further case  set  up  by  SI  Trivedi,  respondent  No.  1, incharge of  the police  station was  that  after  making  a Roznamcha   entry at  7.00 a.m. about his departure from the police station  he (respondent  No. 1-  Shyamsunder Trivedi) and Constable Rajaram respondent proceeded to the spot where the  dead  body  was  stated  to  be  lying  for  conducting investigation under  Section 174  Cr.P.C. He summoned Ramesh Chandra and  Goverdhan respondents  to the spot and in their presence prepared  a panchnama  EX. P/27  of the  dead  body recording the opinion therein to the effect that no definite cause of death was known.      The First  Additional Sessions  Judge acquitted all the respondents of  all the  charges holding  that there  was no direct evidence  to connect  the respondents with the crime. The State  of Madhya  Pradesh went  up in appeal against the order  of  acquittal  and  the  High  Court  maintained  the acquittal of  respondents 2 to 7 but set aside the acquittal of respondent  No. 1, Shyamsunder Trivedi for offences under Section 218, 201 and 342 IPC. His acquittal for the offences under Section  302/149 and 147 IPC was, however, maintained. The State  filed an  appeal in  this court by special leave. This Court  found that the following circumstances have been established by the prosecution beyond every reasonable doubt and coupled  with the  direct evidence of PWs 1, 3, 4, 8 and 18  those   circumstances  were  consistent  only  with  the hypothesis  of   the  quilt  of  the  respondents  and  were inconsistent with their innocence :      (a)  that  the  deceased  had  been      brought alive to the police station      ad was  last seen  alive  there  on      13.10.81;      (b)  That  the  dead  body  of  the      deceased  was   taken  out  of  the      police station  on 14.1.81 at about



    2 p.m.  for being  removed  to  the      hospital;      (c)  that SI Trivedi respondent No.      1, Ram  Naresh  shukla,  Respondent      No. 3,  Raja Ram,  respondent No. 4      and Ganiuddin respondent No. 5 were      present at  the police  station and      had all  joined hands to dispose of      the dead body of Nathu-Banjara:      (d)  That  SI  Trivedi,  respondent      No. 1  created false  evidence  and      fabricated false clues in the shape      of documentary evidence with a view      to screen  the offence and for that      matter, the offender:      (e)  SI   Trivedi   respondent   in      connivance   with   some   of   his      subordinates,  respondents   herein      had taken steps to cremate the dead      body  in   haste   describing   the      deceased as  a ’lavaris’ though the      identity of the deceased, when they      had interrogated  for a  sufficient      long time was well known to them.      and opined that:      "The observations of the High Court      that the presence and participation      of these  respondents in  the crime      is doubtful  are not borne out from      the  evidence  on  the  record  and      appear to  be an  unrealistic  over      simplification  of  the  tell  tale      circumstances  established  by  the      prosecution."      One of  us (namely,  Anand, J.)  speaking for the Court went on to  observe :      "The  trial   court  and  the  High      Court,  if   we  may  say  so  with      respect, exhibited  a total lack of      sensitivity  and   a   ’could   not      careless’ attitude  in appreciating      the  evidence  on  the  record  and      thereby  condoning   the  barbarous      there  degree   methods  which  are      still being  used, at  some  police      stations,  despite  being  illegal.      The exaggerated  adherence  to  and      insistence upon  the  establishment      of proof  beyond  every  reasonable      doubt, by the prosecution, ignoring      the  ground   realities,  the  fact      situations   and    the    peculiar      circumstances of  a given  case, as      in the  present case, often results      in miscarriage of justice and makes      the  justice   delivery  system   a      suspect. In  the ultimate  analysis      the society  suffers and a criminal      gets encouraged. Tortures in police      custody, which  of late  are on the      increase, receive  encouragement by      this   type   of   an   unrealistic      approach of  the Courts  because it      reinforces the  belief in  the mind      of the  police that  no harm  would



    come to  them if  an  odd  prisoner      dies in  the lock-up, because there      would  hardly   be   and   evidence      available  to  the  prosecution  to      directly implicate  them  with  the      torture. The Courts, must not loose      sight of  the   fact that  death in      police custody is perhaps on of the      worst  kind   of  crime   in  a   a      civilised society,  governed by the      rule of  law and  poses  a  serious      thereat  to  an  orderly  civilised      society."      This Court then suggested :      "The Courts  are also  required  to      have a  change in their outlook and      attitude,  particularly   in  cases      involving custodial crimes and they      should exhibit more sensitivity and      adopt a  realistic  rather  than  a      narrow  technical  approach,  while      dealing with  the case of custodial      crime so  that as  far as  possible      within  their  powers,  the  guilty      should  not   escape  so  that  the      victim    of    crime    has    the      satisfaction  that  ultimately  the      Majesty of Law has prevailed."      The State  appeal was  allowed  and  the  acquittal  of respondents 1,  3, 4  and 5  was set  aside. The respondents were convicted  for various  offences including  the offence under Section  304 Part  II/34 IPC  and sentenced to various terms of  imprisonment and fine ranging from Rs. 20,000/- to Rs.. 50,000/-. The fine was directed to be paid to the heirs of Nathu  Banjara by  way of  compensation. It  was  further directed :      "The Trial  Court shall  ensure, in      case the  fine is  deposited by the      accused   respondents,   that   the      payment of  the same is made to the      heirs of  deceased  Nathu  Banjara,      and the  Court shall  take all such      precautions as are necessary to see      that the  money is  not allowed  to      fall  into   wrong  hands   and  is      utilised for  the  benefit  of  the      members  of   the  family   of  the      deceased  Nathu   Banjara,  and  if      found  practical   by  deposit   in      nationalised Bank or post office on      such terms  as the  Trial Court may      in consultation  with the heirs for      the  deceased   consider  fit   and      proper."      It needs  no emphasis  to say  that when the crime goes unpunished, the  criminals are  encouraged and  the  society suffers. The  victim of  crime or  his kith  and kin  become frustrated and contempt for law develops. It was considering these aspects  that the  Law Commission  in its 113th Report recommended the  insertion of  Section 114B  in  the  Indian Evidence Act.  The Law  Commission recommended  in its 113th Report that  in prosecution  of  a  police  officer  for  an alleged offence  of having caused bodily injury to a person, if there  was evidence that the injury was caused during the period when the person was in the custody of the police, the



Court may  presume that  the injury was caused by the police officer having the custody of the person during that period. The Commission  further recommended  that the  court,  while considering the  question of presumption, should have regard to  all  relevant  circumstances  including  the  period  of custody statement  made by  the victim, medical evidence and the evidence  with the  Magistrate may have recorded. Change of burden  of proof  was, thus,  advocated. In  sham  Sunder Trivedi’s case  (supra) this  Court also  expressed the hope that the  Government and  the legislature would give serious thought  to   the  recommendation  of  the  Law  Commission. Unfortunately,  the   suggested  amendment,   has  not  been incorporated in  the statute  so far.  The need of amendment requires no  emphasis -  sharp rise  i  custodial  violence, torture and  death in custody, justifies the urgency for the amendment and we invite Parliament’s attention to it.      Police is,  no  doubt,  under  a  legal  duty  and  has legitimate right to arrest a criminal and to interrogate him during the  investigation of  a an  offence but  it must  be remembered that  the law does not permit use of third degree methods  or   torture   of   accused   in   custody   during interrogation and  investigation with that view to solve the crime. End  cannot justify  the means. The interrogation and investigation into  a crime  should be in true sense purpose full to  make the  investigation effective.  By torturing  a person and  using their  degree methods, the police would be accomplishing behind  the closed  doors what  the demands of our legal order forbid. No. society can permit it.      How do we check the abuse of police power? Transparency of  action  and  accountability  perhaps  are  tow  possible safeguards which  this Court  must insist upon. Attention is also required  to be  paid to properly develop work culture, training and  orientation of  police force  consistent  with basic human values. Training methodology of the police needs restructuring. The  force needs  to be  infused  with  basic human values and made sensitive to the constitutional ethos. Efforts must  be made to change the attitude and approach of the police  personal handling investigations so that they do not sacrifice basic human values during interrogation and do not resort  to questionable  form of  interrogation. With  a view to  bring in  transparency, the presence of the counsel of  the   arrestee  at   some  point   of  time  during  the interrogation may  deter the  police from using third degree methods during interrogation.      Apart  from   the  police,   there  are  several  other governmental authorities  also like  Directorate of  Revenue Intelligence,  Directorate  of  Enforcement,  Costal  Guard, Central Reserve  Police Force  (CRPF), Border Security Force (BSF), the  Central Industrial  Security Force  (CISF),  the State  Armed   Police,  Intelligence   Agencies   like   the Intelligence Bureau,  R.A.W, Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) ,  CID, Tariff  Police, Mounted  Police and ITBP which have the power to detain a person and to interrogated him in connection with  the  investigation  of  economic  offences, offences under  the Essential  Commodities Act,  Excise  and Customs Act.  Foreign Exchange Regulation Act etc. There are instances  of   torture  and   death  in  custody  of  these authorities as  well, In  re Death  of Sawinder Singh Grover [1995 Supp  (4) SCC,  450], (to which Kuldip Singh, j. was a party) this  Court took  suo moto  notice of  the  death  of Sawinder  Singh   Grover  during   his  custody   with   the Directorate  of   Enforcement.  After   getting  an  enquiry conducted by  the additional District Judge, which disclosed a prima  facie case  for investigation and prosecution, this Court directed  the CBI to lodge a FIR and initiate criminal



proceeding against  all persons  named in  the report of the Additional District  Judge and  proceed  against  them.  The Union of  India/Directorate of Enforcement was also directed to pay sum of Rs. 2 lacs to the widow of the deceased by was of the relevant provisions of law to protect the interest of arrested persons in such cases too is a genuine need.      There  is   one  other  aspect  also  which  needs  out consideration, We  are conscious of the fact that the police in India  have to  perform a  difficult and  delicate  task, particularly in  view of  the deteriorating  law  and  order situation,  communal   riots,  political   turmoil,  student unrest,  terrorist   activities,  and   among   others   the increasing  number   of  underworld   and  armed  gangs  and criminals, Many  hard core  criminals  like  extremist,  the terrorists, drug  peddlers,  smugglers  who  have  organised gangs, have  taken strong  roots in the society. It is being said  in   certain  quarters   that  with   more  and   more liberalisation and  enforcement of  fundamental  rights,  it would lead  to  difficulties  in  the  detection  of  crimes committed by  such categories  of hardened criminals by soft peddling interrogation. It is felt in those quarters that if we  lay   to  much   of  emphasis  on  protection  of  their fundamental rights  and human  rights such  criminals may go scot-free  without   exposing  any   element  or   iota   or criminality with  the result,  the crime would go unpunished and in  the ultimate  analysis the society would suffer. The concern is  genuine and  the problem  is real.  To deal with such a  situation, a balanced approach is needed to meet the ends of  justice. This  all the  more so,  in  view  of  the expectation of  the society  that police  must deal with the criminals in  an efficient and effective manner and bring to book those  who are  involved in the crime. The cure cannot, however, be worst than the disease itself.      The response  of the  American supreme Court to such an issue in Miranda Vs. Arizona, 384 US 436 is instructive. The Court said :      "A  recurrent   argument,  made  in      these cases  is that society’s need      for  interrogation  out-weighs  the      privilege.  This  argument  is  not      unfamiliar to this Court. See. e.g.      Chambers v.  Florida, 309  US  227,      240-41, 84  L ed  716, 724, 60 S Ct      472 (1940). The whose thrust of out      foregoing  discussion  demonstrates      that    the     Constitution    has      prescribed  the   rights   of   the      individual when confronted with the      power   of   Government   when   it      provided  in  the  Fifth  Amendment      that  an   individual   cannot   be      compelled to  be a  witness against      himself.  That   right  cannot   be      abridged. "              (Emphasis ours)      There  can  be  no  gain  saying  that  freedom  of  an individual must  yield to  the security  of the  State.  The right of preventive detention of individuals in the interest of security  of the  State in  various situations prescribed under different  statures has been upheld by the Courts. The right to  interrogate the detenues, culprits or arrestees in the interest  of the  nation, must  take precedence  over an individual’s right  to personal  liberty.  The  latin  maxim salus populi  est supreme  lex (the  safety of the people is the supreme  law)  and  salus  republicae  est  suprema  lex



(safety of  the state  is the  supreme law) co-exist an dare not only  important and relevant but lie at the heart of the doctrine that  the welfare  of an  individual must  yield to that of the community. The action of the State, however must be "right,  just and  fair". Using  any form  of torture for extracting any  kind of  information would neither be ’right nor just  nor fair’  and, therefore, would be impermissible, being offensive  to Article 21. Such a crime-suspect must be interrogated -  indeed subjected to sustained and scientific interrogation determined  in accordance  with the provisions of law.  He cannot,  however, be  tortured or  subjected  to third degree  methods or  eleminated with  a view  to elicit information, extract confession or drive knowledge about his accomplices, weapons etc. His Constitutional right cannot be abridged except  in the  manner permitted  by law, though in the  very  nature  of  things  there  would  be  qualitative difference in  the methods of interrogation of such a person as compared  to an ordinary criminal. Challenge of terrorism must  be  met  wit  innovative  ideas  and  approach.  State terrorism is not answer to combat terrorism. State terrorism is no answer to combat terrorism. State terrorism would only provide legitimacy to ’terrorism’. That would be bad for the State, the  community and above all for the Rule of Law. The State must, therefore, ensure that various agencies deployed by it  for combating  terrorism act within the bounds of law and not  become law  unto themselves. that the terrorist has violated human  rights of  innocent citizens  may render him liable for punishment but it cannot justify the violation of this human  rights expect  in the  manner permitted  by law. Need,  therefore,   is  to  develop  scientific  methods  of investigation  and   train  the  investigators  properly  to interrogate to meet the challenge.      In  addition   to  the   statutory  and  constitutional requirements to  which we  have made  a reference, we are of the view  that it would be useful and effective to structure appropriate  machinery  for  contemporaneous  recording  and notification of  all cases  of arrest and detention to bring in transparency and accountability. It is desirable that the officer arresting  a person  should prepare  a memo  of  his arrest on  witness who  may be a member of the family of the arrestee or  a respectable person of the locality from where the arrest  is made.  The date  and time  of arrest shall be recorded in  The memo  which must  also be counter signed by The arrestee.      We therefore,  consider it  appropriate  to  issue  the following requirements to be followed in all cases of arrest or detention  till legal  provisions are made in that behalf as preventive measures : (1)  The  police  personnel  carrying  out  the  arrest  and handling the  interrogation  of  the  arrestee  should  bear accurate, visible  and clear  identification and  name  togs with their  designations. The particulars of all such police personnel who  handle interrogation  of the arrestee must be recorded in a register. (2)  That the  police officer carrying out the arrest of the arrestee shall  prepare a  memo of  arrest at  the  time  of arrest a such memo shall be attested by atleast one witness. who may  be either a member of the family of the arrestee or a respectable  person of  the locality from where the arrest is made. It shall also be counter signed by the arrestee and shall contain the time and date of arrest. (3)  A person who has been arrested or detained and is being held in  custody in a police station or interrogation centre or other  lock-up, shall  be entitled  to have one friend or relative or  other person known to him or having interest in



his welfare  being informed, as soon as practicable, that he has been  arrested and  is being  detained at the particular place, unless the attesting witness of the memo of arrest is himself such a friend or a relative of the arrestee. (4)  The time,  place of  arrest and  venue of custody of an arrestee must  be notified  by the  police  where  the  next friend  or  relative  of  the  arrestee  lives  outside  the district or  town through  the legal Aid Organisation in the District and  the  police  station  of  the  area  concerned telegraphically within  a period  of 8 to 12 hours after the arrest. (5)  The person arrested must be made aware of this right to have someone  informed of his arrest or detention as soon he is put under arrest or is detained. (6)  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 he next friend of the person who has been informed of the arrest an the names and particulars of the police officials in whose custody the arrestee is. (7)  The arrestee  should, where  he so  requests,  be  also examined at  the time  of his  arrest and  major  and  minor injuries, if  any present  on his/her body, must be recorded at that  time. The  "Inspection Memo" must be signed both by the arrestee and the police officer effecting the arrest and its copy provided to the arrestee. (8)  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  of  approved  doctors appointed by  Director, Health  Services  of  the  concerned Stare or  Union Territory.  Director, Health Services should prepare such a penal for all Tehsils and Districts as well. (9)  Copies of  all the  documents  including  the  memo  of arrest, referred  to above,  should be  sent to  the  illaga Magistrate for his record. (10) The arrestee may be permitted to meet his lawyer during interrogation, though not throughout the interrogation. (11) 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 and at the police control room it should be displayed on a conspicuous notice board.      Failure to  comply with  the  requirements  hereinabove mentioned shall  apart from rendering the concerned official liable for departmental action, also render his liable to be punished for  contempt of  court  and  the  proceedings  for contempt of court may be instituted in any High Court of the country, having territorial jurisdiction over the matter.      The requirements,  referred to above flow from Articles 21 and  22 (1)  of the  Constitution and need to be strictly followed. These  would apply  with equal  force to the other governmental agencies  also to  which a  reference has  been made earlier.      These   requirements    are   in    addition   to   the constitutional and  statutory safeguards  and do not detract from various  other directions given by the courts from time to time  in connection  with the  safeguarding of the rights and dignity of the arrestee.      The requirements  mentioned above shall be forwarded to the Director  General of  Police and  the Home  Secretary of every Stare/Union Territory and it shall be their obligation to circulate  the same  to every  police station under their charge and  get the same notified at every police station at conspicuous place.  It would also be useful and serve larger interest to  broadcast the  requirements on  the  All  India



Radio  besides  being  shown  on  the  National  network  of Doordarshan and  by publishing and distributing pamphlets in the  local   language  containing   these  requirements  for information of  the general public. Creating awareness about the rights of the arrestee would in out opinion be a step in the right  direction to  combat the  evil of custodial crime and bring  in transparency  and accountability.  It is hoped that these  requirements would  help to curb, if not totally eliminate,  the   use   of   questionable   methods   during interrogation  and   investigation  leading   to   custodial commission of crimes. PUNITIVE MEASURES UBI JUS  IBI REMEDIUM  - There is no wrong without a remedy. The law  will that  in every  case where  man is wronged and undamaged he  must have  a remedy.  A  mere  declaration  of invalidity of  an action or finding of custodial violence or death in  lock-up does  not by itself provide any meaningful remedy to  a person whose fundamental right to life has been infringed. Much more needs to be done.      Some punitive  provisions are  contained in  the Indian Penal  Code which seek to punish violation of right to life. Section  220  provides  for  punishment  to  an  officer  or authority who  detains or keeps a person in confinement with a corrupt  or malicious  motive. Section 330 and 331 provide for punishment  of those who inflict injury of grievous hurt on a person to extort confession or information in regard to commission of  an  offence.  Illustration  (a)  and  (b)  to Section 330  make a  police officer  guilty of  torturing  a person in order to induce him to confess the commission of a crime or  to induce him to confess the commission of a crime or to  induce him  to point out places where stolen property is deposited. Section 330, therefore, directly makes torture during interrogation  and investigation punishable under the Indian Penal  Code. These Statutory provisions are, However, inadequate  to   repair  the  wrong  done  to  the  citizen. Prosecution of the offender is an obligation of the State in case of  every crime  but the  victim of  crime needs  to be compensated  monetarily   also.   The   Court,   where   the infringement  of   the  fundamental  right  is  established, therefore, cannot stop by giving a mere declaration. It must proceed further  and give compensatory relief, nor by way of damages as  in a  civil action  but by  way of  compensation under the public law jurisdiction for the wrong done, due to breach of  public duty  by the  State of  not protecting the fundamental right  to life  of the  citizen. To  repair  the wrong done  and give  judicial redress for legal injury is a compulsion of judicial conscience.      Article 9(5)  of the International convent on civil and Political Rights, 1966 (ICCPR) provides that "anyone who has been the  victim of  unlawful arrest or detention shall have enforceable  right   to  compensation".   of   course,   the Government of  India as  the time  of its  ratification  (of ICCPR) in 1979 had made a specific reservation to the effect that the  Indian legal  system does not recognise a right to compensation for victims of unlawful arrest or detention and thus did  not become party to the Convent. That reservation, however, has  now lost its relevance in view of the law laid down by  this Court in number of cases awarding compensation for the  infringement of  the fundamental right to life of a citizen. (See with advantage Rudal Shah Vs. State of Bihar [ 1983 (4) SCC, 141 ]: Sebastian M. Hongrey Vs. Union of India [ 1984  (3) SCC,  339] and  1984 (3) SCC, 82]; Bhim Singh Vs State of  J & K [1984 (Supp) SCC, 504 and 1985 (4) SCC, 677] Saheli Vs.  Commissioner of  Police.  Delhi  [1990  (1)  SCC 422]}.  There   is  indeed   no  express  provision  in  the



Constitution  of   India  for   grant  of  compensation  for violation of  a fundamental right to life, nonetheless, this Court has judicially evolved a right o compensation in cases of  established   unconstitutional  deprivation   of  person liberty or life. [See : Nilabati Bahara Vs. State (Supra)]      Till  about  tow  decades  ago  the  liability  of  the government for  tortious  act  of  its  public  servants  as generally limited  and the person affected could enforce his right in  tort by  filing a  civil suit  and there again the defence  of sovereign immunity was allowed to have its play. For the  violation of  the fundamental  right to life or the basic human  rights, however,  this Court has taken the view that the  defence of  sovereign immunity is not available to the State  for the  tortious act  of the public servants and for the  established violation  of the  rights guaranteed by Article 21  of the Constitution of India. In Nilabati Behera Vs. State  (supra) the decision of this Court in Kasturi Lal Ralia Ram Jain Vs. State of U.P. [1965 (1) SCR, 375] wherein the plea  of sovereign immunity had been upheld in a case of vicarious liability  of the  State for the tort committed by its employees was explained thus:      "In this  Context, it is sufficient      to say  that the  decision of  this      Court in  Kasturilal upholding  the      State’s plea  of sovereign immunity      for tortious  acts of  its servants      is  confined   to  the   sphere  of      liability   in   tort,   which   is      distinct from the State’s liability      for  contravention  of  fundamental      rights to  which  the  doctrine  of      sovereign    immunity     has    no      application in  the  constitutional      remedy under Articles 32 and 226 of      the  Constitution   which   enables      award    of     compensation    for      contravention    of     fundamental      rights, when  the only  practicable      mode   of    enforcement   of   the      fundamental rights can be the award      of compensation.  The decisions  of      this court  in Rudul Sah and others      in that  line relate  to  award  of      compensation for  contravention  of      fundamental    rights,    in    the      constitutional remedy upon Articles      32 and  226 of the Constitution, On      the other  hand, Kasturilal related      to the  value of  goods seized  and      not returned  to the  owner due  to      the fault  of government  Servants,      the claim  being of  damages of the      tort  of   conversion   under   the      ordinary process,  and not  a claim      for compensation  for violation  of      fundamental rights.  Kasturilal is,      therefore,  inapplicable   in  this      context and distinguishable."      The  claim   in  public   law  for   compensation   for unconstitutional deprivation  of fundamental  right to  life and liberty, the protection of which is guaranteed under the Constitution, is a claim based on strict liability and is in addition to  the claim  available in private law for damages of  tortious   acts  of  the  public  servants.  Public  law proceedings serve  a different  purpose than the private law



proceedings.   Award   of   compensation   for   established infringement of  the indefeasible  rights  guaranteed  under Article 21  of the  Constitutions  is  remedy  available  in public law  since the  purpose of  public law is not only to civilise public  power but  also to assure the citizens that they live  under a  legal system  wherein their  rights  and interests  shall   be  protected  and  preserved.  Grant  of compensation in  proceedings under  Article 32 or 226 of the Constitution of  India for  the established violation or the fundamental  rights  guaranteed  under  Article  21,  is  an exercise of the Courts under the public law jurisdiction for penalising the  wrong door  and fixing the liability for the public wrong  on the  State which failed in the discharge of its public  duty to  protect the  fundamental rights  of the citizen.      The old  doctrine of  only relegating  the aggrieved to the remedies  available in  civil law limits the role of the courts too  much, as  the protector  and  custodian  of  the indefeasible rights  of the  citizens. The  courts have  the obligation to satisfy the social aspirations of the citizens because the  court and  the  law  are  for  the  people  and expected to  respond to  their aspirations.  A Court  of law cannot  close  its  consciousness  and  aliveness  to  stark realities. Mere  punishment of the offender cannot give much solace to the family of the victim - civil action for damage is a  long drawn  and cumber some judicial process. Monetary compensation  for   redressal  by   the  Court  finding  the infringement of  the  indefeasible  right  to  life  of  the citizen is,  therefore, useful and at times perhaps the only effective remedy  to apply  balm to the wounds of the family members of  the deceased victim. Who may have been the bread winner of the family.      In Nilabati Bahera’s case (supra), it was held:      "Adverting to  the grant  of relief      to  the   heirs  of   a  victim  of      custodial death  for the infraction      or   invasion    of   his    rights      guaranteed under  Article 21 of the      Constitution of  India, it  is  not      always enough  to relegate  him  to      the ordinary remedy of a civil suit      to claim  damages for  the tortious      act of  the State as that remedy in      private law  indeed is available to      the aggrieved  party.  The  citizen      complaining of  the infringement of      the   indefeasible    right   under      Article  21   of  the  constitution      cannot  be   told  that   for   the      established   violation    of   the      fundamental right to life he cannot      get any relief under the public law      by  the   courts  exercising   Writ      jurisdiction, The primary source of      the public  law  proceedings  stems      from the  prerogative writs and the      courts have  therefore, to evolve ’      new tools’ to give relief in public      law by moulding it according to the      situation with  a view  to preserve      and protect  the Rule of Law. While      concluding his first Hamlyn Lecture      in 1949  under the  title  "freedom      under the  Law" Lord Denning in his      own style warned :



         No one  ca  suppose  that  the      executive will  never be guilty the      of the  sins that are common to all      of us.  Your may  be sure that they      will sometimes to things which they      ought to  do  :  and  will  not  do      things that  they ought  to do. But      if  and  when  wrongs  are  thereby      suffered by  any of  us what is the      remedy? Our  procedure for securing      our personal  freedom is efficient,      out procedure  for  preventing  the      abuse of  power is not. Just as the      pick  and   shovel  is   no  longer      suitable for  the winning  of coal,      so also  the procedure of mandamus,      certiorari and  actions on the case      are not suitable for the winning or      freedom in  the new  age. They must      be replaced  by new  and up-to date      machinery     by      declarations,      injunctions   and    actions    for      negligence... This  is not the task      of Parliament... the courts must do      this. Of  all the  great tasks that      lie ahead  this  is  the  greatest.      Properly exercised  the new  powers      of  the   executive  lead   to  the      welfare state  :  but  abused  they      lead to  a totalitarian state. None      such must  ever be  allowed in this      country."      A similar  approach of redressing the wrong by award of monetary compensation  against the  State for its failure to protect the  fundamental rights  of  the  citizen  has  been adopted by  the Courts  of  Ireland,  which  has  a  written constitution, guaranteeing  fundamental  rights,  but  which also like  the Indian  Constitution contains no provision of remedy for  the infringement  of  those  rights.  That  has, however, not  prevented the Court in Ireland from developing remedies, including  the award  of damages, not only against individuals guilty  of infringement,  but against  the State itself.      The  informative   and  educative  observations  of  O’ Dalaigh CJ  in The  State (At  the Prosecution  of Quinn) v. Ryan [1965]  IR 70 (122) deserve special notice. The Learned Chief Justice said:      "It was  not the  intention of  the      Constitution  in  guaranteeing  the      fundamental rights  of the  citizen      that these  rights should be set at      nought   or    circumvented.    The      intention  was   that   rights   of      substances were  being  assured  to      the individual  and that the Courts      were  the   custodians   of   those      rights. As  a necessary  corollary,      it follows  that no  one  can  with      impunity set these rights at nought      of circumvent  them, and  that  the      Court’s powers  in this  regard are      as ample  as  the  defence  of  the      Constitution require."           (Emphasis supplied)      In Byrne  v. Ireland [1972] IR 241, Walsh J opined at p



264:      "In   several    parts    in    the      Constitution duties to make certain      provisions for  the benefit  of the      citizens are  imposed on  the State      in terms  which bestow  rights upon      the  citizens   and,  unless   some      contrary provision  appears in  the      Constitution, the Constitution must      be deemed toe have created a remedy      for  the   enforcement   of   these      rights. It  follows that, where the      right  is  one  guaranteed  by  the      State. It is against the State that      the remedy  must be sought it there      has been a failure to discharge the      constitutional obligation impose"           (Emphasis supplied)      In Maharaj  Vs. Attorney General of Trinidad and Tobago [  (1978)   2  All   E.R.  670].  The  Privy  Council  while interpreting Section  6 of  the Constitution of Trinidad and Tobago held  that though  not expressly provided therein, it permitted an  order for  monetary compensation,  by  way  of ’redress’ for  contravention of  the basic  human rights and fundamental freedoms. Lord Diplock speaking for the majority said:      "It was  argued on  behalf  of  the      Attorney General  that Section 6(2)      does not  permit of  an  order  for      monetary compensation  despite  the      fact that  this kind of redress was      ordered  in   Jaundoo  v.  Attorney      General  of  Guyana.  Reliance  was      placed on the reference in the sub-      section to  ’enforcing, or securing      the  enforcement  of,  any  of  the      provisions of  the  said  foregoing      sections’ as  the purpose for which      orders etc. could be made. An order      for payment of compensation, it was      submitted, did  not amount  to  the      enforcement of  the rights that had      been    contravened.    In    their      Lordships’  view   of   order   for      payment  of   compensation  when  a      right  protected  under  Section  1      ’has been’ contravened is clearly a      form of ’redress’ which a person is      entitled to  claim under  Section 6      (1)  and   may  well  be  any  only      practicable form  of redress, as by      now it  is in the instant case. The      jurisdiction to  make such an order      is conferred  on the  High Court by      para  (a)  of  Section  6(2),  viz.      jurisdiction ’to here and determine      any application  made by any person      in pursuance  of sub-section (1) of      this section’.  The very wide power      to make  orders,  issue  writs  and      give directions  are  ancillary  to      this."      Lord diplock then went on to observe ( at page 680) :      "Finally, their Lordships would say      something  about   the  measure  of



    monetary  compensation  recoverable      under   Section    6   where    the      contravention  of   the  claimant’s      constitutional rights  consists  of      deprivation  of  liberty  otherwise      that by   due  process of  law. The      claim is not a claim in private law      for damages  for the  tort of false      imprisonment,     under  which  the      damages recoverable  are  at  large      and would  include damages for loss      of reputation.  IT is  a  claim  in      public  law  for  compensation  for      deprivation of liberty alone."      In Simpson  was, Attorney  General [  Baigent’s case  ] (1994 NZLR,  667) the  Court of  Appeal in  NewZealand dealt with the  issue in a very elaborate manner by reference to a catena  of  authorities  from  different  jurisdictions.  It considered the  applicability of  the doctrine  of vicarious liability  for torts, like unlawful search, committed by the police officials  which violate  the  New  Zealand  Bill  of Rights Act,  1990. While  dealing with  the  enforcement  of rights and  freedoms as guaranteed by the Bill of Rights for which no  specific remedy  was  provided.  Hardie  Boys,  J. observed :      "The New  Zealand  Bill  of  Rights      Act, unless  it is  to be  no  more      that  an   empty  statement,  is  a      commitment by  the Crown that those      who in  the three  branches of  the      government exercise  its functions,      powers and  duties will observe the      rights hat  the Bill affirms. it is      I   consider   implicit   in   that      commitment, indeed essential to its      worth, that the Courts are not only      to  observe   the   Bill   in   the      discharge of  their own  duties but      are able  to grant  appropriate  ad      effective  remedies   where  rights      have  been   infringed.  I  see  no      reason to  think that  this  should      depend on  the terms  of a  written      constitution.  Enjoyment   of   the      basic   human    rights   are   the      entitlement of  every citizen,  and      their protection  the obligation of      every  civilised  state.  They  are      inherent in  and essential  to  the      structure of  society. They  do not      depend    on     the    legal    or      constitutional form  in which  they      are declared.  the  reasoning  that      has led  the Privy  Council and the      Courts of  Ireland and India to the      conclusions reached in the cases to      which I have referred (and they are      but a  sample)  is  in  my  opinion      equally valid  to the  New  Zealand      Bill of Rights Act if it is to have      life   and    meaning."   (Emphasis      supplied)      The Court  of appeal  relied upon  the judgment  of the Irish Courts, the Privy Council and referred to the law laid down in Nilabati Behera Vs. State (supra) thus:



    "Another valuable  authority  comes      from India,  Where the constitution      empowers  the   Supreme  Court   to      enforce rights guaranteed under it.      In  Nilabati  Bahera  V.  State  of      Orissa (1993)  Cri.  LJ  2899,  the      Supreme   Court   awarded   damages      against the  Stare to the mother of      a young  man  beaten  to  death  in      police custody. The Court held that      its power of enforcement  imposed a      duty to "forge new tools", of which      compensation was  an appropriate on      where that  was the  only  mode  of      redress available.  This Was  not a      remedy in  tort, but  one in public      law based  on strict  liability for      the  contravention  of  fundamental      rights to  which the  principle  of      sovereign immunity  does not apply.      These observations  of Anand, J. at      P 2912 may be noted.      The old doctrine of only relegating      the  aggrieved   to  the   remedies      available in  civil law  limits the      role of  the  courts  too  much  as      protector and  guarantor  of    the      indefeasible    rights    of    the      citizens.  The   courts  have   the      obligation to  satisfy  the  social      aspirations of the citizens because      the courts  and the law are for the      people and  expected to  respond to      their aspirations.  The purpose  of      public law  is not only to civilize      public that they live under a legal      system which  aims to protect their      interest   and    preserve    their      rights."      Each the  five  members  of  the  Court  of  Appeal  in Simpson’s case  (supra) delivered  a separate  judgment  but there was  unanimity  of  opinion  regarding  the  grant  of pecuniary compensation  to the victim, for the contravention of his  rights guaranteed  under the  Bill  of  Rights  Act, notwithstanding the  absence of an express provision in that behalf in the Bill of Rights Act.      Thus, to  sum up, it is now a well accepted proposition in most  of the  jurisdictions, that  monetary or  pecuniary compensation is  an appropriate  and indeed an effective and sometimes perhaps  the only suitable remedy for redressal of the established  infringement of  the fundamental  right  to life of  a citizen  by the  public servants and the State is vicariously liable  for their acts. The claim of the citizen is based  on the  principle of strict liability to which the defence of  sovereign immunity  is  nor  available  and  the citizen must  revive the  amount of  compensation  from  the State, which  shall have  the right to be indemnified by the wrong doer.  In the assessment of compensation, the emphasis has to  be on  the compensatory and not on punitive element. The objective  is to  apply balm  to the  wounds and  not to punish  the   transgressor  or  the  offender,  as  awarding appropriate  punishment   for  the   offender,  as  awarding appropriate punishment  for  the  offence  (irrespective  of compensation) must   be left to the criminal courts in which the offender is prosecuted, which the State, in law, is duty



bound to  do, That  award of  compensation in the public law jurisdiction is  also without  prejudice to any other action like civil  suit for  damages which is lawfully available to the victim  or the heirs of the deceased victim with respect to the  same matter  for the  tortious act  committed by the functionaries of  the State.  The  quantum  of  compensation will. of course, depend upon the peculiar facts of each case and no  strait jacket formula can be evolved in that behalf. The relief to redress the wrong for the established invasion of the  fundamental rights  of the  citizen, under he public law jurisdiction is, in addition to the traditional remedies and not  it derrogation  of them. The amount of compensation as awarded by the Court and paid by the State to redress The wrong done,  may in  a given  case , be adjusted against any amount which  may be  awarded to  the  claimant  by  way  of damages in a civil suit.      Before parting  with this  judgment we wish to place on record our  appreciation for  the learned  counsel appearing for the  States in  general and  Dr. A.M.  Singhvi,  learned senior counsel  who assisted  the  Court  amicus  curiae  in particular for the valuable assistances rendered by them.