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Legal aid is matter of “right” not “discretion of state”: Arnab’s right

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Final Year Law Student of "Symbiosis Law School "

Right to consult a Lawyer is a matter of right- it’s neither the states discretion nor it should be done at mercy of police. Whether its Arnab or anyone else. This is a matter of right which can be claimed by anyone and one is entitled to get.

Article- 22 (1) of the Indian Constitution provides that every arrested person has the right to choose and elect his own lawyer to defend him in the court of law for whatever crime he may/ may not have committed.
Section- 41D of CrPC allows prisoners to be able to consult with their lawyers even during their interrogation.
Section- 303 of CrPC allows every alleged convict/ criminal the right to be defended by a lawyer of his choice even if the criminal proceedings against him have already begun.

Nandini Satpathy vs Dani (P.L.) And Anr.1978 SCR (3) 608 which held that it is essential to the spirit of Art. 22(1) that an accused be allowed to consult a lawyer during interrogation. Laying down this principle, the Court made two critical observations. Firstly, it acknowledged that a fair trial is a crucial facet to the rule of law, and the ends of justice can only be secured when the accused is allowed a consultation with a lawyer. Secondly, the Court took cognizance of the fact that in the absence of a lawyer, an interrogating officer has the ability to use coercive measures to draw out a self-incriminating confession. 

Rights that are given to the citizens of India casts duty upon the state to protect those right. Now state cannot anyone from exercising there right that is ultravires in nature. Similarly Mr. Arnab Goswami is given  right to consult his advocate and if he is refrain from exercising his right then it is against the ethos and very idea of Article 22 of Constitution of India. This act of state is also frustrating the very of insertion of Section 41 D of Code of Criminal Procedure.

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