Arrest Of Arnab Goswami Violated Guidelines Of Supreme Court To Protect The Rights Of Arrestee; Fit Case For Contempt Of Court: All India Bar Association

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All India Bar Association (AIBA) has condemned the arrest of noted journalist Arnab Goswami by Mumbai Police as it has violated the landmark guidelines to protect the rights of arrestee as enumerated in judgment delivered by Hon’ble Supreme Court in D. K. Basu v. State of West Bengal (AIR 1997 SC 610).

In a letter to the Governor of Maharashtra, Chairman of AIBA, Dr. Adish C Aggarwala, Senior Advocate, appealed for immediate release of the journalist as it is blatant misuse of power by Maharashtra Govt. against Republic TV and Arnab Goswami. The illegal arrest is an attack on individual freedom and the 4th pillar of democracy.

The following guidelines of Hon’ble Supreme Court in the judgment passed in D. K. Basu v. State of West Bengal (AIR 1997 SC 610), have been violated by Mumbai Police in the matter of arrest of Arnab Goswami

DUTIES OF POLICE MAKING ARREST AND HANDLING INTERROGATION:

All Police personnel should wear name tags clearly indicating their name and designation.

Police must enter the complete details of Police officials conducting interrogation in a register.

ARREST MEMO:

The Police officer making an arrest has to prepare an Arrest Memo that records details of the arrest.

The arrest memo must contain:

  1. The signature of at least one witness, who can be a relative of the arrestee or a respectable person of the locality where the arrest is made.
  2. The time, date, and place of the arrest. The arrested person should sign the arrest memo after it is properly prepared.

INSPECTION MEMO:

If the arrested person requests it, the arresting officer must record any minor/major injuries on his/her body in an Inspection memo. The memorandum should be signed by the arrested person and the arresting officer. A copy of the Memo must be given to the arrested person.

INFORMATION ABOUT THE ARREST AND DETENTION:

The arrested person has the right that his/her relative/friend is informed about the arrest. The Police must contact and inform the relative/friend of the time and place of arrest, and the exact location where the arrested person is detained, at the earliest. If the relative / friend is in a different district / city, the concerned Police station should be informed by telegraph within 8-12 hours of the arrest and then convey the information to the relative / friend. The information of the arrest should also be sent through the district legal aid committee.

RIGHT TO A LAWYER:

The arrested person has the right to meet and consult a lawyer during his/her interrogation. The Police cannot deny this.

ILLAQA MAGISTRATE:

The Police must send one copy of all documents, relating to the arrest (including the Arrest and Inspection Memos) to the Illaqa Magistrate for his/her records.

POLICE CONTROL ROOM:

Police Control Rooms should be set up in all district and state headquarters. The arresting officer has the duty to inform the control room about the place of detention of the arrested person. This has to be done in all arrests. This information must be sent to the Control Room within 12 hours of the arrest. This information must be displayed clearly on the notice board of the Control Room. Duties of Police making arrest and handling interrogation:

These directions should be mandatorily followed. Refusal to do so results in the initiation of contempt of Court proceedings. Departmental action should be initiated against Police officials who have violated above safeguards guaranteed to the citizens of the country.

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