Guwahati, June 04: In a significant development aimed at enhancing transparency and accountability within the law enforcement system, the Gauhati High Court has directed the Arunachal Pradesh government to install a comprehensive closed-circuit television (CCTV) system in all police stations across the state.
This directive comes in response to a suo moto Public Interest Litigation (PIL) registered after the tragic incident of lynching two individuals on February 19, 2018, who were taken from police custody at the Tezu Police Station in Arunachal Pradesh.
The court’s decision underscores the critical need for a robust CCTV system to be implemented in every police station in Arunachal Pradesh. By ensuring the presence of CCTV cameras, the court aims to deter any potential human rights violations and hold accountable those responsible for any misconduct or abuse of power within the police force.
The installation of these surveillance cameras will not only serve as a deterrent but also provide crucial evidence in case of any untoward incidents or allegations.
To facilitate effective monitoring and management of the CCTV system, the court has directed that the footage captured by these cameras be centralized and monitored in a Centrally Located Control Room. This centralized control will enable real-time monitoring, ensuring that any irregularities or violations are promptly identified and appropriate action is taken.
The court has further instructed the Additional Advocate General to oversee the implementation of this directive by liaising with the concerned authorities and seeking necessary instructions. This proactive approach by the court reflects its commitment to upholding the principles of justice, fairness, and accountability within law enforcement agencies.
Notably, the division bench comprising Chief Justice Sandeep Mehta and Justice Mitali Thakuria has also taken cognizance of the importance of CCTV systems in police stations beyond Arunachal Pradesh. They have directed the Advocate General of Assam to conduct an inquiry into the presence and status of CCTV systems, if any, in the police stations of Assam.
This move highlights the court’s broader concern for the implementation of CCTV surveillance as a means to ensure transparency and protect the rights of individuals in police custody across the region.
The next hearing on this matter has been scheduled for June 16, during which the court will review the progress made by the respective governments in complying with the directives. It is expected that the Arunachal Pradesh government, along with other concerned authorities, will take prompt action to fulfill the court’s order and expedite the installation of CCTV systems in all police stations.
The implementation of comprehensive CCTV systems in police stations not only promotes transparency and accountability but also instills public confidence in the justice system. It serves as a deterrent against any potential abuse of power and fosters an environment where individuals can trust that their rights will be protected.
By taking this proactive step, the Gauhati High Court has reinforced the significance of upholding human rights and ensuring the fair and just treatment of individuals within the criminal justice system.