The Criminal Procedure (Identification) Bill, 2022 seeks to repeal The Identification of Prisoners Act, 1920. The bill empowers a Police Officer or a Prison Officer to collect measurements from a person convicted of an offence, a person ordered to give security for his good behaviour or maintaining peace under Section 117 CrPC for a proceeding under Section 107, 108, 109, 110, a person arrested with respect to an offence punishable by any law or a person who is detained under the preventive detention law. The term ‘measurement’ has been defined under the Act to mean finger impressions, palm print impressions, photographs, foot prints impressions, iris and retina scan, physical, biological samples and their analysis, behavioural attributes including signatures, handwriting or any other examination referred to in Section 53, 53A of the CrPC.
So far as the concept of ‘consent’ is concerned, which is a well known principle of evidence/law in criminal jurisprudence, the Act seeks to do away with the said procedure. However, under Clause 3 of the Bill it has been provided that a person may not be obliged to give biological samples until and unless he has been arrested or convicted for an offence against women or child or an offence punishable with more than seven years of imprisonment.
The National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) has been entrusted with the responsibility of collection, storing, preservation of measurements and storing, sharing and dissemination, destruction and disposal of records.