Hey Indians, How Well Do You Know Your Rights If You Get Arrested?

    Any idea when you can meet your lawyer? Or if the police have to inform your family?

    Sajjad Hussain / AFP / Getty Images

    According to official reports, at least 591 people died in police custody in India between 2010 and 2015. NGO Humans Rights Watch presented BuzzFeed with their recently published report on deaths in police custody in India, with the aim of educating people about their basic human rights while under arrest.

    Test how well you know yours.

    1. You are being arrested. What must the police officer do?

      Correct! 
      Wrong! 

      Show their ID and tell you why you are being arrested.

      Code of Criminal Procedure, section 41B (a) says police personnel carrying out arrests should bear accurate, visible and clear identification of their name and designation. Section 50 guarantees every arrested person the right to be informed of the grounds of arrest.

    2. Who do the police have to inform about your arrest?

      Correct! 
      Wrong! 

      A relative or friend and tell them where they took you.

      According to Supreme Court guidelines and Code of Criminal Procedure, section 41B (c), police should immediately inform the arrested person of their right to have someone informed of their arrest and place of detention.

    3. Do you sign anything when you are arrested?

      Correct! 
      Wrong! 

      You and a relative or friend signs an arrest memo.

      Police officers carrying out arrests should prepare a memo of arrest stating the time and date of arrest, signed by an independent witness and counter-signed by the person arrested. Code of Criminal Procedure, section 41B (b).

    4. Where can your family find out about your arrest?

      Correct! 
      Wrong! 

      State and district police control rooms.

      According to the Code of Criminal Procedure, section 41CA, all police control rooms at district and state headquarters should prominently display information regarding the names and addresses of the persons arrested and the name and designation of the police officers who made the arrest. The state police headquarters is also required to maintain a database of information regarding all arrests made by the police so that this information is easy accessible to the public.

    5. When can you meet your lawyer?

      Correct! 
      Wrong! 

      During interrogation but not the entire time.

      The arrested person is entitled to meet a lawyer of their choice during interrogation, though is not entitled to have counsel present throughout the interrogation. Code of Criminal Procedure, section 41D.

    6. If you can't afford a lawyer, what happens?

      Correct! 
      Wrong! 

      You have the right to free legal aid soon after your arrest.

      The Indian Supreme Court has said that every person arrested has the right to free legal aid from the time of arrest. It is the duty of the police to immediately inform the nearest legal aid committee about an arrested person seeking legal aid.

    7. Can you find out who interrogated you?

      Correct! 
      Wrong! 

      Yes. Police should record names of all officials who interrogated you.

      The Supreme Court has said details of all police personnel handling interrogation of the arrested persons should be recorded in a register.

    8. How long can police keep you in custody?

      Correct! 
      Wrong! 

      Until 24 hours, after which they require permission from a magistrate.

      Police should produce the person under arrest before the appropriate court within 24 hours of the arrest. The police cannot keep a person in custody after 24 hours without the permission of a magistrate. Code of Criminal Procedure, sections 56, 57, 167.

    9. When does the police officer have you examined by a doctor?

      Correct! 
      Wrong! 

      Right after arrest.

      The arrested person should be examined at the time of arrest by a medical doctor and all existing injuries should be recorded in a report. The report must be signed both by the arrested person and the police officer making the arrest and a copy of the report should be provided to the arrested person. Code of Criminal Procedure, section 54.

    10. Can you see a doctor again?

      Correct! 
      Wrong! 

      You have the right to be examined every 48 hours while in police custody.

      The Supreme Court has said that the arrested person should be subjected to a medical examination by a trained doctor every 48 hours approved by state health department.

    Read Human Rights Watch's full 114-page report, “‘Bound by Brotherhood’: India’s Failure to End Killings in Police Custody" here.

    Andre Borges is a social news reporter for BuzzFeed and is based in Mumbai.

    Contact Andre Borges at andre.borges@buzzfeed.com.

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