SECTION 27 EVIDENCE ACT
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Context: The Supreme Court of India held that for evidence to be admissible under Section 27 of the Indian Evidence Act, the discovery must be a direct result of information given by the accused person while in police custody.
Section 27 of the Indian Evidence Act 1872
- Section 27 applies when a person is in police custody.
- If a person confesses to an offence while being detained by the police, this confession falls under the purview of this section.
Warning by Police Officer
- According to this section, a confession made by an accused to a police officer is admissible in court if the police officer warns the accused that they are not bound to confess.
- The police officer must inform the accused that any confession they make can be used against them in court.
- For a confession to be admissible under Section 27, it must appear to be made voluntarily. This means the confession should not be a result of any inducement, threat, or promise by the police.
- The court will consider the circumstances under which the confession was made to determine its voluntariness.
- While a confession made to a police officer is admissible, it is considered weak evidence on its own. This means that the court generally requires corroborating evidence to support the confession.
- Corroboration means additional evidence that supports the truth of the confession and strengthens its reliability.
Usage in Court
- If the confession is deemed to be voluntary and corroborated by other evidence, it can be used against the accused in court.
- The court can consider the confession while determining the guilt or innocence of the accused.
Importance of Caution
- Courts are cautious while relying on confessions made to the police because of the potential for coercion or pressure during police interrogations.
- To prevent abuse, the law requires the police to follow proper procedures and inform the accused of their rights before recording any confession.
- The admissibility and weight of a confession under Section 27 can vary based on the specific facts and circumstances of each case. Courts assess the voluntariness of the confession and consider corroborative evidence before giving it legal weight in the proceedings.
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Q. What are the key challenges faced by the Indian criminal justice system in ensuring swift and fair justice, and what reforms or initiatives have been introduced to address these challenges?