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Custodial Killings: A way forward to "Goondaraj"

The occurrence of custodial death in the world's greatest democracy has raised the eyebrows of every citizen and shaken the very faith in democracy. Complaints of police excess and torture of suspects in police custody have been made in the past. Of late, such complaints have assumed wider dimensions, as the incidents of torture, assault and deaths in police custody have increased in alarming proportions. Many cases of custodial deaths may not have been seen in the light of the day and may have gone unreported and unpunished. The few but growing number of cases in which the erring police officers have been brought to book exhibit the utter callousness of the "pachydermic" police system in India.

The current arrangements are insufficient to uncover something so broadly acknowledged and profoundly settled in the framework. With such a great amount of cover between those researching and those being examined, the probability of fairness is undermined. As a transient handy solution, the lawful arrangements to explore these gruesome killings should be fortified and executed all the more genuinely. Neither any case nor complaint is filed against a situation of fake encounters. It is a violation of the law of the court and a violation of human rights.

Coming in of goondaraj in India

In India, it is seen that in the past few years a large number of cases relating to the fake encounters are taking place. The entire situation is staged in such a way that it seems that the criminal was running away from the court of law and as a crossfire, the encounter is done by the police in order to protect himself from the criminal.

According to a report by the National High Commission, there are many cases of fake encounters in India. Such cases and reports are registered overtime, half of them being even forgotten in the period. However many fake cases are fought to punish the guilty. Therefore, as per the record, exactly 440 cases during the period of 2002-2008 were recorded. In these cases, the states with the highest number of cases are Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Delhi, Uttarakhand, Maharashtra, and Andhra Pradesh.

Cases of staged encounters

As per an article by Priya Pillai, there have been rampant killings all overtaking the idea of fake encounters. In recent years, police in the Indian state Uttar Pradesh is claimed to have done 59 extrajudicial killings . The occasions have started a request by a board of four United Nations free specialists on common liberties, which is an announcement this month "communicated alert" about the killings that appeared to have occurred in police guardianship. Shockingly, extrajudicial killings are not new to India. They have been utilized in the past by the police and security powers in fluctuating settings – to control rebellions, for example, in the conditions of Bengal during the 1960s, and in Punjab during the 1980s. Right now, the pretence for a considerable lot of these killings identifies with public security offences including psychological warfare, and in regions of a dynamic clash, for example, in Kashmir, states in the North East of India including Manipur, just as regions of focal India influenced by the Maoist rebellion. Even after the intrusion of the National Human Rights Commission, there has been no change in the reporting of cases. Another especially disturbing viewpoint is how these violations are reclamation in mainstream society and by the media. Police with such genuine charges against them are named "encountered specialists", and many have been granted awards just as monetary prizes. Therefore, instead of arraignment and discipline, there seems institutional and mainstream uphold for these killings.

As per another article by Justice Markandey Katju, the justice claims that such encounters are nothing but cold-blooded murders. There was an encounter, which took place in Hyderabad claiming the lives of four men who were allegedly involved in raping a woman.

It was claimed that the four men on the way to their trail tried to run away during which such a course of action took place. The fake encounters are usually conducted without the order of the government authority. If a situation of fake encounter takes place then it is seen that no investigation procedure is followed. The current arrangements are insufficient to uncover something so broadly acknowledged and profoundly settled in the framework. With such a great amount of cover between those researching and those being examined, the probability of fairness is undermined. The police at the act of defence took such a step. Although on one part this is a brave step and even a constitutional step on the other it disrespected the whole judicial system. It was celebrated as valour for the whole country. Many fake encounters are conducted by the police force all over states like Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh.

Politicians and the role they play

When Yogi Adityanath came to power, there was a surge in the volume of fake encounters in India i.e. around 1100 police encounters. The UP chief minister had claimed to give full operational freedom to the police force. He had openly challenged the criminals out in the open to either surrender or flee the state. The police were in full force during that time. As per the new reports of the National Human Rights Commission, there has been a surge of fake encounters in India during the period between 2000 and 2017 i.e. 1782 cases. In the report, the leading state is Uttar Pradesh again. Encounters in India are the backdrop creating a visual of slow upheld movement constituting the criminal equity framework. The police regularly observe cases dissipate as preliminaries are deferred and witnesses turn unfriendly. Respondents or the defendants are likewise known to purchase their opportunity. However, even after this taking law into hands is not the judicial custom that should be followed. The police force is the torchbearers of the country. Therefore, if they undertake such measures i.e. taking law in hands will promote a wrong message within the individuals of a country. The rampant increase of fake encounters puts a question on the aspect of the social security of individuals. Police vigilantism is a tool that is being used by politicians extensively mainly for their selfish purposes. Also, these fake encounters are more favoured due to the valour shown in the media. In various hindi films like Dabang, Singham such practices are shown at a very celebrated pace. The current arrangements are insufficient to uncover something so broadly acknowledged and profoundly settled in the framework. With such a great amount of cover between those researching and those being examined, the probability of fairness is undermined. As a transient handy solution, the lawful arrangements to explore these gruesome killings should be fortified and executed all the more genuinely. No government is it state or central should give out freedom for such fake encounters. This will only harm the serenity and harmony of public order.

Criminal justice system's role

Lastly, it can be concluded that there are a large number of fake encounters that have taken place in the last couple of years. The performance of the power depends entirely on the court of law. Fake encounters are basically those situations that are created as a result of a mockery of the court of law. The fake encounters are usually conducted without the order of the government authority. If a situation of fake encounter takes place then it is seen that no investigation procedure is followed. The current arrangements are insufficient to uncover something so broadly acknowledged and profoundly settled in the framework. With such a great amount of cover between those researching and those being examined, the probability of fairness is undermined. It has a huge impact on the court administration and the criminal justice system. Hence it also affects the creditworthiness of the court of law. In a civilized country like India fake encounters are very high in number. These are mainly an alternative situation in the process of punishment through trials. In order to reduce the situation of fake encounters, a large number of changes have to be made in the criminal justice system.


Krishangi Sinha

Krishangi Sinha

Journalism Graduate, Aspires to be a media and law professional


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