Justice Minister Ali Sabry yesterday presented the Code of Criminal Procedure Amendment Bill which makes provisions to ensure that suspects in custody are protected to the extent provided for in the Convention against Torture and other Cruel inhuman or Degrading Treatment or the Punishment Act No 22 of 1994.
It will be the duty of every Magistrate to visit every police station situated within the judicial division in respect of which he is appointed, at least once in every month to ensure that the suspects under police custody at such police stations are protected to the extent provided for in the Convention against Torture and other cruel, inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment Act No 22 of 1994.
The Magistrate who visits the police station shall personally see the suspect and look into his well-being, welfare and conditions under which he is kept at such police station and then record his observations and complaints the suspect may make. Where the Magistrate is of the opinion that the suspect may have been subjected to torture, he may direct that the suspect be produced before a Judicial Medical Officer for a medical examination and the report be submitted by the medical officer to him as per the Bill. Then the Magistrate can order treatment if the suspect is subjected to torture and change the custody of the suspect. (Yohan Perera and Ajith Siriwardana)