HC seeks Delhi Police response on uploading data of proclaimed offenders

The court had assigned responsibility to Delhi Police and district courts for uploading the data of proclaimed offenders in criminal cases

Delhi High Court (photo: IANS)
Delhi High Court (photo: IANS)


Delhi High Court has sought a response from Delhi Police regarding the procedure to be followed for verification and uploading of data relating to proclaimed offenders on an online user-friendly portal.

Earlier, now-retired Justice Talwant Singh had asked the National Informatics Centre (NIC) to create software and facilitate other requirements for uploading the names and details of proclaimed offenders for citizens to be able to assist the police by providing information about their whereabouts, and enable appropriate action.

Justice Amit Bansal noted the need for clarification on which agency is responsible for uploading the data on the online portal and for complying with the directions of the predecessor bench to implement the project.

Senior advocate Arun Mohan, serving as amicus curiae in the matter, also raised concerns about ambiguity in identifying the responsible agency during a meeting of the court-appointed committee.

The court had appointed the committee to oversee the implementation of these instructions, with the data initially being uploaded onto internal servers and later onto a public platform developed by the NIC after verification.

Justice Bansal has sought a report from the DCP (legal division), Delhi Police, regarding the procedure for verification and data uploading, and has listed the matter for further hearing on 6 December.

Justice Singh had stated that the NIC, under the guidance of the monitoring committee, should develop the necessary software and provide the infrastructure and search facilities for the data.

Initially, the data should only be accessible to authorised individuals on internal servers until it has been checked, re-checked, and verified by the stakeholders. Subsequently, it can be uploaded onto a public platform developed by the NIC for Delhi District Courts, the court had said.

The court had assigned responsibility to Delhi Police and district courts for uploading the data of proclaimed offenders in criminal cases, while the director/in-charge of the inter-operable criminal justice system was instructed to provide technical and tactical support to the project.

It had specified that, at this stage, only data regarding proclaimed offenders in cases registered by the Delhi Police and accused individuals declared as proclaimed offenders in private complaints filed directly in Delhi District Courts should be uploaded.

Data relating to cases registered by other law enforcement agencies, such as the Central Bureau of Investigation and the Enforcement Directorate, may be uploaded after a minimum gap of six months, subject to the decision of the monitoring committee.

Furthermore, the court had said that it expects officials from the Delhi Police and district courts responsible for uploading the data to utilise databases and web-search engines, as well as data available from other agencies, to update information about the addresses and other details of proclaimed offenders.

The court had directed the Delhi Police (Headquarters) to assess the necessary manpower to operate a centralised cell for processing and coordinating information on proclaimed offenders.

Additionally, the court had instructed the Delhi government to forward the suggestion made by amicus curiae, senior advocate Arun Mohan, regarding the introduction of legal provisions for dealing with proclaimed offenders to the appropriate authorities for consideration.

The monitoring committee was asked to submit a report every three months.

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