The Delhi government on Thursday notified a policy to ensure protection of witnesses in “crucial” cases through a witness protection programme.
The Delhi Witness Protection Scheme “envisages categorisation of witnesses, creation of witness protection fund, types of protection and procedure for processing such request by the competent authority,” a statement issued by the Home Department read.
Witness protection scheme notified by delhi govt. Delhi becomes the first state to do that
— Arvind Kejriwal (@ArvindKejriwal) July 30, 2015
Key witnesses in criminal cases have been found murdered many-a-times in India due to a lack of a comprehensive witness protection programme.
In 2013 too, the Delhi High Court had directed the government to frame a witness protection policy. The same would have provided guidelines and principles which the police, prosecution and executive agencies would have to follow.
“After much deliberation, it was decided to have a comprehensive policy for protecting witnesses,” the Delhi government said in a statement.
For implementation, a sub-committee comprising officers of Law Department (Home department), Directorate of Prosecution and the Delhi Police has also been constituted by Delhi’s Home Department.
“Subsequently, DSLSA (Delhi State Legal Services Authority) was included in the process. All aspects relating to witness protection and practices adopted worldwide were studied,” the statement added.