Criminology and criminal justice is in its infancy in India. This book attempts to examine India's crime problem in detail and document if and how its criminal justice system has responded to emerging challenges and opportunities. The objective is to move beyond mere observations and thoughtful opinions, and make contributions that are the next steps in the development of an empirical (or evidence-based) criminology and criminal justice on this vast and diverse country-by focusing on research that is both balanced and precise.
This book brings together a diverse set of 32 academics from India, the US, and the UK who have authored 19 chapters on many aspects of crime and justice in India.
The organizational components or sectors of the criminal justice system are the police, the courts, and corrections. The studies collected here provide balanced coverage of the entire criminal justice system and not just one component of it. The first section of this book consists of overviews of several major issues that affect the entire criminal justice system. Section Two considers topics related to the gateway of the criminal justice system, policing. Section Three takes up the operational problems of criminal law and courts and Section Four deals with the difficult question of punishment and correction, the last part of the criminal justice system.
Criminal Law and Courts in India
Historically, prosecutors in India functioned under the District Superintendent of Police. Beginning in 1974 and following the recommendations of the Law Commission, a permanent central governmental body, various states each created a Directorate of Prosecution. There are branches in each district to handle cases going to trial. As a result of this move, the earlier system of having police officials sometimes act as prosecutors has been abandoned in most states. Currently, prosecution of criminal cases is a function of a state-level organization, the Directorate of Prosecution. There are district-level Chief Public Prosecutors and court-level Assistant Public Prosecutors.
The local legal sector consists of magisterial courts for less serious, and sessions courts for more serious, offenses. ...