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Know Your Rights: A woman cannot be arrested after sunset and before sunrise

In recent times, there have been growing cases where modesty of women has been abused during police arrest. Taking a note of these incidents, the Honorable Supreme Court and several High Courts have prescribed various guidelines to check on incidents of police atrocities on women.


  |  Updated On : November 14, 2017 09:45 PM
New Delhi :  

The Indian women have carved out a niche for themselves by reaching the zenith of their chosen career paths. Despite their rising stature in the ever-evolving Indian social set up, they still are subject to heinous crimes on account be being considered as soft targets in a male chauvinist society. 

In recent times, there have been growing cases where modesty of women has been abused during police arrest. Taking a note of these incidents, the Honorable Supreme Court and several High Courts have prescribed various guidelines to check on incidents of police atrocities on women.

After several instances of women being harassed by policemen got reported, the Supreme Court came out with a ruling stating that women cannot be arrested after sunset and before sunrise.

So let us have a closer look at this law and how does it safeguard the rights of women in IndiaWomen enjoy the right of being present in the police station only during the daytime.

Even if there is a woman constable accompanying the officers, the police can’t arrest a woman at night. If a case arises where a woman has committed a serious crime, the police have to get it in writing from the magistrate explaining why the arrest is necessary during the night. 

According to Section 46(4) of the Criminal Procedure Code, 1973 which governs the arrest of women, It is specifically mentioned that “Save in exceptional circumstances, no woman can be arrested after sunset and before sunrise, and where such exceptional circumstances exist, the woman police officer shall, by making a written report, obtain the prior permission of the Judicial Magistrate of the first class within whose local jurisdiction the offence is committed or the arrest is to be made.

Reference Case - The ruling on 'A woman can’t be arrested after sunset and before sunrise' was awarded by the Bombay High Court in the Mrs. Bharati S. Khandhar vs Shri. Maruti Govind Jadhav case on 21 December, 2012.

Going by the laws in place, it becomes imperative for women in India to know about these rights so that they can exercise the same if a situation arises.

First Published: Tuesday, November 14, 2017 09:39 PM


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