ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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To Whom Does Fairness in Procedure Matter?

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Any society that is bound by the liberal principle of individualism and the corresponding set of rights to protect individual freedom makes the principle of fairness in procedures absolutely important. It is needless to mention that fairness in procedure is guaranteed by the transparent and efficient functioning of both investigative (police) as well as confirmatory (forensic experts) agencies. The police personnel and forensic experts are supposed to use their expertise and knowledge to produce evidence that is beyond any reasonable doubt. Procedures that are to be followed particularly in regard to the criminal law system are expected to produce an outcome in the form of justice for an individual. It is in this sense that fairness is linked to the following template: “Not only justice must be done, but also seen to be done.”

Justice critically hinges on the fairness in procedure. Fairness in the particular context of the criminal justice system has to be defined in terms of impartiality and scientific objectivity by confirmatory agencies like the forensics laboratory, and procedure-bound and hence impartial investigation by agencies such as those handling criminal cases. These institutions are supposed to arrive at a coherent form of evidence that is not amenable to any manipulation or dilution. Put differently, they should not be accused of either diluting the evidence or destroying it altogether.

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Updated On : 16th Oct, 2019

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