Srija Choudhury
in Criminal Law
Asked February 04, 2015

How does house arrest work ?

  • 1 Answer
  • 74 Views

How does house arrest work? Isn't it quite nice to be able to stay back at home, my own home. Where is the punishment ? If I ever face imprisonment, can I choose to remain under house arrest than prison incarceration ?

Answer 1

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Ayushi Singhal
There is no specific provision of house arrest in Indian laws. However the High Courts and the Supreme Court can grant house arrest because they have powers to do justice beyond the black letter law under the Criminal Procedure Code and the Constitution of India [Section 482 of the Code for the High Court and Article 142 of the Constitution for Supreme Court]. This means that even when there is no provision of a certain kind in any of the laws, the courts can borrow it from other countries or can innovate some method of their own in interests of justice, without violating the existing laws. During house arrest, the person so arrested is generally not allowed to step outside the house he/she is arrested in. The person has to remain confined and is not allowed to meet people unless so ordered by the courts. The punishment lies in the very fact that despite staying within your own house, you are not able to enjoy complete freedom. Further, the option to be house arrested cannot be chosen by you. It is the court’s discretion to grant the same and is granted in extremely rare circumstances, for e.g. when the person to be arrested is ill and requires special treatment, etc. Recently, Subrato Roy, the Sahara chief pleaded for house arrest since he wanted to complete certain deals with investors, which could help him gather money to pay back the people Sahara had allegedly played foul against. However he was refused the same on the pretext that the investors could very well visit him in the jail premises and staying at home would not grant any special edge to him in making the deals. Therefore, house arrest is a punishment, though not equal to prison arrest, and you do not have the discretion to choose the same.
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