Supreme Court to hear plea on redressal of wrongly prosecuted persons

The petition says innocents fall victims to malice of authorities who use criminal justice system to settle scores

Updated - April 22, 2022 11:49 pm IST

Published - April 22, 2022 09:12 pm IST - NEW DELHI

A view of Supreme Court of India in New Delhi. File

A view of Supreme Court of India in New Delhi. File | Photo Credit: S. Subramanium

The Supreme Court on Friday agreed to hear on April 26 a petition highlighting the need for the government to frame guidelines for compensating victims of wrongful prosecution by the police or authorities.

A Bench led by Justice U.U. Lalit said the petition filed by advocate Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay would remain on board the list of cases on April 26.

Mr. Upadhyay has argued that “India, with a population of around 1.5 billion, has no effective statutory/legal mechanism for the wrongful prosecutions due to police and prosecutorial misconduct resulting in a pandemic of false cases which has not only destroyed the social fabric of the nation but also affected the overburdened judiciary with alarming pendency of over 40 million cases”.

Law panel guidelines

The petition said the government had not bothered to implement the recommendations made by the Law Commission of India in its 277th report on the miscarriage of justice in 2018.

The commission had prepared the report on the basis of a Delhi High Court order in the Babloo Chauhan case in November 2017 to undertake a “comprehensive examination of issue of relief and rehabilitation to victims of wrongful prosecution and incarceration”.

Mr. Upadhyay has urged that, being custodian of the Constitution and protector of the right to life, liberty and dignity, the apex court “may use its plenary constitutional power to frame the guidelines for compensation to victims of wrongful prosecutions”.

The petition said innocents fall victims to the malice of the authorities who use the criminal justice system to settle scores.

“Due to no fear of being prosecuted by courts and growing tendency to frame innocents for ulterior motives there has been unprecedented surge in filing of false cases,” the plea said.

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