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MHA Notifies Rules for Criminal Procedure (Identification) Act 2022: Grant Cops Access to Biometric Data

The Centre notified a controversial law the rules for Criminal Procedure (Identification) Act, 2022. the act gives powers to enforcement agencies to collect biological samples, retina scans, biometrics and behavioural attributes of convicted, arrested or detained persons. As per the act, data of people arrested under offences related to elections (Chapter IXA of the Indian Penal Code) and offences related to contempt or disobedience of public servants’ authority (Chapter X of the IPC) can only be taken with the “prior written approval” of a police officer, not below the rank of a superintendent of police.

Criminal Procedure (Identification) Act, 2022

  • In April 2022, Parliament passed the Criminal Procedure (Identification) Act, 2022 has come into force.
  • The new act has replaced the Identification of Prisoners Act, 1920, a colonial-era law, and authorises police officers to take measurements of people convicted, arrested or facing trial in criminal cases.

What is the Criminal Procedure (Identification) Act 2022?

  • The act allows Legal sanction for the police to take physical and biological samples of convicts and those accused of crimes.
  • The police will have the power to collect Data under section 53 or section 53A of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC), 1973.
  • Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC), 1973 is the primary legislation regarding the procedural aspects of criminal law.
  • National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) will have the right to keep and store, preserve, share with any law enforcement agency and destroy the record of measurements at a national level.
  • Such records can be stored up to a period of 75 years.

List of Data that can be collected:

  • Finger-impressions,
  • Palm-Print impressions,
  • Footprint impressions,
  • Photographs,
  • Iris and Retina scan,
  • Physical,
  • Biological samples and their analysis,
  • Behavioural Attributes including signatures,
  • Handwriting or any other examination

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