Unending Trial: The Misery of Under Trial Prisoners

  • Amar Pandey and Sonu Agarwal
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  • Amar Pandey

    LL.M. student at Manipal University, India

  • Sonu Agarwal

    Associate professor at Manipal University, India.

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Criminal Justice System in India has many facets like the role of Prosecution, Investigating Agency or the Defense Lawyer. They all combine to make a trial successful. The Trial is the base on which the Criminal Justice System is based, the more the trials are done, the faster they are done, the better the system works. But what is the current status of trials in India? The Prime Minister in one of his public rally recently pointed out that the judiciary must also look towards the state of under-trial prisoners. There is a basic presumption under criminal law that a person shall be presumed to be innocent until & unless his guilt is proved or in short known as the rule of presumption of innocence. As noted earlier there is no time limit specified for completing investigation but there are time limits attached to filing of charge sheet when we read the statutory rule laid down in Section 167 of the Code of Criminal Procedure. The accused can get the bail as a matter of right after applying to the court after the 60 days or 90 days in whatever category the case falls if within this time frame charge sheet is not filed. The accused here in this case is again an under trial. But looking at the competency of the investigating authorities & reading the provisions of Section 173 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, there is still a scope of “further investigation” that can come into picture. Preventive Detention Laws are a product of preventive form of punishment, where punishment is so stringent that it will stop future crimes. But again the problem is the form but the process. The trial in these cases takes a whole lot of time to finish & in most of the cases because the accusation is just a vendetta the trial doesn’t even start. Act like National Security Act are a prime example of it. The vagueness of the grounds of detention under the said act is such that more often the cases which are booked the detention period of the accused continues & after that the outcome of the trial is nothing. The Code of Criminal Procedure is a post-independence law which has its own problems that are of procedural nature or the non-effectiveness of the agencies involved or many other allied factors.


Research Paper


International Journal of Law Management and Humanities, Volume 5, Issue 4, Page 434 - 443

DOI: https://doij.org/10.10000/IJLMH.113352

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