malaymail.com 02 May, 2021 08:30 am

Custodial deaths are most reprehensible — Hafiz Hassan

Custodial deaths are most reprehensible — Hafiz Hassan
MAY 2 — In the light of the tragic death of A. Ganapathy who died while having treatment at Selayang Hospital after he was sent there from police custody, let’s recall what a Federal Court Judge said less than 40 days ago: “Custodial deaths are one of the most reprehensible of wrongs in a...

Ganapathy who died while having treatment at Selayang Hospital after he was sent there from police custody, let’s recall what a Federal Court Judge said less than 40 days ago: “Custodial deaths are one of the most reprehensible of wrongs in a civilised society governed by the rule of law.” (Federal Court Judge Nallini Pathmanathan in Koperal Zainal bin Mohd Ali & Ors v Selvi a/p Narayan (joint administrator and dependant of Chandran a/l Perumal, deceased) & Anor, [2021] 3 MLJ 365) In short, the death of an individual whilst in police custody — if it is established that the death was caused by the police — is a clear violation of the most fundamental liberty, that is, the right of life guaranteed in Article 5(1) of the Constitution.” A person may be taken in police custody pursuant to a lawful remand order issued by a Magistrate, but if he is subjected to abuse and the abuse is to such an extent that there is an element of criminal and tortious acts having been committed during the period of his detention, then the detention becomes unlawful.Accordingly, most legal systems identify, acknowledge and protect the right to life as the most basic of human rights.

” “This precious right of life is available to all and cannot be denied to persons in custody, prisoners or persons awaiting trial.A civilised society that is governed by the rule of law must be vigilant to protect the fundamental rights of those in custody to ensure that they are not subject to custodial violence.

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