Procedural Mechanism in the Criminal Justice System viz. Police, Prosecutor, and Judicial system

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Procedural Mechanism in the Criminal Justice System viz. Police, Prosecutor and Judicial system

                                                                                                                       Written by: Aayushi Mishra


India has a highly developed criminal jurisprudence and prosecution system, supported by legal precedents, although there may be certain challenges or concerns connected to the execution of the same by Police and implementation by the Judiciary. There has been a deliberate effort on the side of Indian courts to protect the rights of the accused. Similarly, Article 21 of the Indian Constitution has been read to defend the rights, life, and liberty of citizens by embracing natural justice concepts.

A criminal trial in India is governed by the Criminal Procedure Code (Cr.P.C.), a comprehensive and exhaustive procedural law that governs the manner in which evidence is gathered and examined, witnesses are interrogated and accused are interrogated, arrests are made, police and court procedures are followed, bail is granted, a criminal trial is conducted, a conviction is reached, Criminal trials in India are generally controlled by The Code of Criminal Procedure of 1973, unless otherwise specified (Cr.P.C.).

For all transgressions, barring those covered by other Indian laws, the Indian Penal Code (IPC) is the primary penal code of India. A detailed treaty on the law of “evidence”, which can be offered in court, the manner of producing evidence in court, and the evidential value that can be attached to such evidence.

Expert and scientific evidence are also dealt with by IEA. To cope with criminality in particular instances, various extra laws have been enacted. IPC’s substantive law is codified in IPC’s criminal procedure code, in which The police, the prosecutor, and the judicial system are the key actors in the criminal justice system.

Power and functions of police under CRPC

The Powers of Police are very wide and are based on two main functions of Police. These functions are Maintaining of Law and Order and Investigation of illegal activities. The Police Act defines Police as an instrument for the prevention and detection of Crime[1] The Police define most of its powers from the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 and the Police Act, 1861. Following are some of the Powers of Police;

Powers of Police to Investigate

 The Police have the power to investigate Cognizable as well as Non-Cognizable offences. Police officers can investigate Cognizable offences without the magistrate’s orders. If a Police officer suspects the commission of a cognizable offence, he has the power to investigate under section 157 without the filing of FIR.[2] Police also have the power to require the presence of witnesses in order to pursue an investigation.

Males under 15 years and over 60 years of age, females, physically disabled persons shall not be required to attend as a witness except for their residences.[3] Police can examine these witnesses as well. Police also has the power to conduct a medical examination of rape victims.[4]

Power to Arrest

Police have the power to arrest the persons as well. The Police can make arrests for both Cognizable as well as Non-cognizable offences. For non-cognizable offences, a Police officer has no authority to arrest a person without a warrant. However, a Police officer can arrest a person without a warrant for Cognizable offences[5]

Power of Preventive Arrest

Persons likely to commit an offence are detained in a preventive arrest. Globally, it is a hotly debated issue. There are sections of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) in India that allow for a variety of police powers, including preventive A person may be ordered to show cause if an Executive Magistrate receives information that he is likely to commit a breach of peace.

Also, the magistrate can order him to execute a bond to maintain order for the duration of the Cognizable offences must be prevented. If the Police know that a person is planning to commit any recognised crime, they can arrest them without a warrant or an order from a magistrate. But the police can only arrest someone if it’s the only way to prevent the crime.

The purpose of these provisions is to prevent an offence from being committed. Controversy has surrounded the constitutionality of these sections for years As a result, many people have filed petitions questioning the legality of preventive arrest provisions When the Sardar Sarovar Project affected certain landowners in MP, they protested. In spite of the fact that they did not pose any danger in terms of committing criminal offences, they were still beaten The Court held that this was in violation of Article 21 of the Constitution.[6]

To prevent a crime, the police can only arrest someone if it is the only way to do so All of these provisions have been put in place in order to prevent an offence from being In recent years, there has been controversy over the constitutionality of these sections This has led to several petitions challenging the legality of preventive arrest provisions in the law. Certain landowners in MP protested when the Sardar Sarovar Project affected them. But even though they didn’t pose any criminal risk, they were still beat.

Public prosecutors as the ‘gate keepers’ of criminal justice

This section introduces students to the concepts of prosecutorial independence and impartiality by illustrating the main characteristics of the role of prosecutors in society.

They play a vital role in society. Because they are responsible for initiating the prosecution and repression of crimes, they are the “gatekeepers” of criminal justice. As defined in Section 24 of the Criminal Procedure Code, the Public Prosecutor is an individual You can think of them as a basic principle of the rule


There are a variety of functions that the Public Prosecutor can perform depending

  • It is the responsibility of the Additional Public Prosecutor in Session Court and High Court to supervise the function performed by the Public Prosecutor
  • Assist the Additional Prosecutor in prosecuting criminal cases in Session Court
  • This person examines the charge sheet prepared by the agencies and submits an acquittal or discharge to the court system. Their responsibilities include evaluating evidence and submitting petitions to revise a On top of that, they are responsible for prosecuting crimes in the Court of Metropolitan
  • Director of Prosecution- it is the head office. They exercise the overall control and supervision of officers of Directorate. They also look after the Account Branches.

Role of the Public Prosecutor in the investigating process

  • To make an appearance in the Court and obtain an arrest warrant
  • To obtain search warrants for conducting a search in specified premises
  • To obtain police custody remand for interrogation (including custodial interrogation) of the accused
  • To initiate a proceeding for the declaration of the non-traceable offender as the proclaimed offender
  • To record the evidence of accused in the police report regarding the advisability of the prosecutions

Role of Public Prosecutors at the time of trial

After a person has been convicted and sentenced, he or she receives an As a result, it is up to the Public Prosecutor to make his case for an appropriate punishment based on all of the relevant facts, circumstances, and severity. India’s Constitution states in Article 21: “Right to Life and Personal Liberty.” When it comes to calling witnesses, the prosecutors are responsible for calling all witnesses whose testimony is crucial to the case Interrogate witnesses and make sure no one is left unquestioned. Assemble and compile all necessary

Other Important Roles

Someone is sentenced to prison after being convicted and sentenced. Because of this, it is up to the Public Prosecutor to make his case for an appropriate punishment based on all pertinent facts, circumstances, and severity There is a right to life and personal liberty in Article 21 of the Indian Constitution. It is the prosecutors’ responsibility to call all witnesses whose testimony is vital to the case. Witnesses should be interrogated, and no one should be left out Build and assemble everything you need    


“A judge ought to be wise enough to know that he is fallible and therefore, ever ready to learn and be courageous enough to acknowledge his errors”.[7]

The Indian Evidence Act, Section 165, gives the judge broad powers to ask questions. As a result of giving such wide-ranging power 1981 1 SCC 627, it is hoped that the truth and When advising a client, the attorney only cares about his or her success, but the Because of this, if the criminal court is to be an effective tool for dispensing justice, the presiding officer must stop being a spectator and By asking questions of the witnesses, he must become an active participant in the trial, demonstrating intelligence and an active interest in uncovering the truth.

The Code of Criminal Procedure delineates the powers and functions of judicial magistrates at every stage, including pre-trial, during the trial, and post-trial. All of these provisions should be well-known to you by now, so I won’t However, I would like to remind you that these powers and functions have been given to you as a public trust, and they must be exercised in full compliance with the Constitutional mandates of fair and speedy trials for both the accused and complaint

Additionally, the Code of Criminal Procedure’s introduction of Plea Bargaining (sections 265A to 265L) has been well-rece For the purposes of Section 265A, judicial officers must be aware of “offences affecting the socio-economic condition of the country.

Because of this, it’s important that the criminal justice system is A lack judicial fairness that would undermine the public’s confidence in the rule of law. Every person is presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a trial before an impartial and competent court, which is one of the fundamental principles of criminal law. Nobody should be punished without a fair trial in accordance with the law, and judicial officers have a role in ensuring

Article 22(2) provides that every person who is arrested and detained in custody shall be produced before the nearest magistrate within a period of 24 hours of such arrest and no one shall be detained in custody beyond the said period without the authority of a magistrate. The magistrate can pass an order of remand to authorise the detention of the accused in such custody as such Magistrate thinks fit, for a term not exceeding 15 days in the whole.

Justice Bhagwati summed up the purpose of these safeguards in Khatri II vs the State of Bihar.[8] Further, in Hussainara Khatoon V Case[9] it was held that it is the duty of the magistrate to inform the accused that he has a right to be released on bail on expiry of the statutory period of 90 or 60 days as the case may be. Suffice it to say that magistrates are the best persons to oversee that the accused is not denied his rights.

It was held that it is the duty of the magistrate to inform the accused that he has a right to be released on bail on expiry of a statutory period of 90 or 60 days as the case may be. Suffice it to say that magistrates are the best persons to oversee that the accused is not denied his rights.

A magistrate’s recording of confessions and dying declarations is a valuable piece of evidence because it can be used to convince The Magistrate must follow certain broad guidelines to ensure that the document inspires confidence in the court assessing it, despite the fact that there is no hard and fast rule as to how it should be recorded

To ensure speedy justice, the magistrates are empowered to deal with summons cases and a few specific warrant cases in a summary manner. For minor offences such as housebreaking, cattle trespassing, insults to the king and breach of the peace they can give an expedited version of a regular trial with a maximum sentence of 2 years in prison.


As a result of society’s response to crime and criminals, criminal Courts, police, prosecutors, and defence are the key players in this role. In a democratic society governed by rule of law and guaranteed fundamental rights, administering criminal justice satisfactorily is a difficult task.

As a result, the subordinate judiciary assumes a significant role. The role of magistrate is effectively summed up in the words of Former Chief Justice Ranganath Mishra in a writ petition relating to conditions of the subordinate judiciary in the case of All India Judges’ Association vs. Union of India[10]

About the Author

Procedural Mechanism in the Criminal Justice System viz. Police, Prosecutor and Judicial system

Aayushi Mishra

Student at Vivekananda School of Law and Legal Studies, VIPS

[1] The Police Act 1861, preamble.

[2]  State of Maharashtra v Sarangdharsingh Shivdassingh Chavan (2011) 1 SCC 577.

[3] Code of Criminal Procedure 1973, s 160.

[4]  Code of Criminal Procedure 1973, s 164A

[5] ibid, s 2(c), 2(l).

[6] Medha Patkar v State (2011) 8 SCC 55.

[7]  Speech delivered by Hon’ble Mr. Justice P.Sathasivam, Judge, Supreme Court of India on 05.01.2013 at Tamil Nadu State Judicial Academy

[8] [8] (1981) 1 SCC 627

[9] (1980) 1 SCC 108

[10] (1992) 1 SCC 119

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