Custodial Interrogation

Custodial Interrogation:

Custodial interrogation is qualitatively more elicitation-oriented than questioning  a suspect who is well ensconced with a favourable order of anticipatory bail under sec.438 of CrPC. In a case, effective interrogation of a suspected person is of tremendous advantage in disinterring many useful information and also materials which would have been concealed.

Success in such interrogation would elude if the suspected person knows that he is well protected and insulated by a pre-arrest bail order during the time he is interrogated.

Very often interrogation in such a condition would reduce to a mere ritual. The argument that the custodial interrogation is fraught with the danger of the person being subjected to third-degree methods need not be countenanced, for, such an argument can be advanced by all accused in all criminal cases.

The Court has to presume that responsible police officers would conduct themselves in a responsible manner and that those entrusted with the task of disinterring offences would not conduct themselves as offenders.

“Bail and not jail is a normal rule”

Unless exceptional circumstances are brought to the notice of the Court which may defeat the proper investigation and fair trial, the Court will not decline bail to a person who is not accused of an offence punishable with death or imprisonment for life.

(Excerpts from the Supreme Court judgment of State rep. by CBI v. Anil Sharma, reported in 1997 (3) CTC 60)

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