CBSE Class 8 Social Science Political Science Revision Notes Chapter 6

Class 8 Political Science Chapter 6 Notes

CBSE Class 8 Social Science (Civics) Chapter 6 Notes – Understanding Our Criminal Justice System

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Understanding Our Criminal Justice System Class 8 Social Science (Civics) Chapter 6 Notes

Access Class 8 Political Science – Civics Chapter 06 – Understanding Our Criminal Justice System Notes


If someone breaks the laws and rules of the government, the police are instantly informed about it. It is believed that the police decide whether or not someone is guilty because of the role that police personnel play in apprehending criminals and lawbreakers. But that is not the case. Whether or not someone is guilty is determined by a court of law after they have been arrested. Everyone accused of committing a crime has a right to a fair trial, as stated by the Constitution of the country.

Main Players in the Criminal Justice System

The main players in the criminal justice system are as follows.

  • The police
  • The public prosecutor
  • The defence lawyer
  • The judge

Role of the Police While Investigating a Crime

The police’s first and most important duty is to investigate any complaint filed as an FIR.

The investigation process includes recording witness statements and gathering evidence related to the crime. The investigation and opinion about the crime are formed on that basis.

The police present a charge sheet to the court if the accused is found guilty following the initial inquiry.

It is the judge, not the police, who decides whether a person is innocent or guilty.

Police investigations are conducted in accordance with the law and with regard to human rights.

According to Article 22 of the Constitution and Criminal Law, a person who is arrested has the following fundamental rights.

  • The individual should be informed, and he should be aware of the time of the arrest.
  • During detention, the person should not be subjected to ill-treatment or torture.
  • A person must appear before a magistrate within 24 hours.
  • A criminal (boy or girl) under the age of 15 or a woman cannot be summoned to the police station for questioning.
  • Confessions made while under arrest should not be used as evidence against criminals.

Role of the Public Prosecutor

The prosecutor’s role begins after the police investigation and the filing of the charge sheet in front of the court.

There is no involvement of the public prosecutor in the investigation.

The public prosecutor represents and prosecutes on behalf of the state.

The prosecutor is to offer the court material facts, evidence, and witnesses so the court can reach a verdict in the case.

Role of the Judge

The judge observes and listens to all witnesses and evidence presented by the prosecution and defence attorneys.

The judge must decide whether the criminal is guilty or innocent based on the evidence presented to him under the law.

The judge may impose a fine, a jail sentence, or both, depending on the statute.

Fair Trial

According to Article 21 of the Constitution and the Criminal Law, the right to life, which defines a person’s liberty or life, can only be taken away through a legal procedure.

Important Questions and Answers

  1. Explain the criminal justice system and mention the four important players in it.

Ans. The criminal justice system is the branch of government that enforces the law, resolves crimes, and punishes criminal behaviour. The purpose of the criminal justice system is to hold offenders accountable and punish them.

  1. What distinguishes a defence attorney from a public prosecutor?

Ans. A public prosecutor and a defence lawyer are a part of the criminal judiciary system. A defence attorney’s job is to do everything in their power to help an accused person clear their name of all charges while still complying with the law. In contrast, a public prosecutor’s job is to represent the state in an offence against the perpetrator.

  1. Why are different people assigned different roles in the criminal justice system?

Ans. Different people play different roles in the criminal justice system. This can be justified by the following.

  • All trial and investigation processes cannot be completed by a single person because they involve various types of work, such as arresting, recording statements, defending the accused and victim, passing affairs, and lawful judgement.
  • If all of the powers were given to a single person, the whole process might end up becoming partial and misused, which can lead to the breaking of laws.
  1. What are the requirements and processes that the police should follow when detaining, arresting, and questioning a person?

Ans: The Supreme Court of India has given the police some guidelines for arresting, detaining, or apprehending anyone. These guidelines are mentioned below.

  • At the moment of the arrest, a memo that specifies the date and time of the arrest must be written down.
  • A warrant of arrest requires the testimony of at least one witness, who can be a member of the arrested person’s family or a reputable figure in the area where the arrest took place.
  • When conducting an investigation or interrogation, the police officer should wear the appropriate uniform.
  • If the family or the known ones of the accused live outside the district, the police should notify them of his/her arrest time and location within 12 hours of his their arrest.
  1. What is an FIR?

Ans: An FIR (First Information Report) is a report filed with the police station before the start of an investigation. The law requires the police officer in charge of the crime to file an FIR whenever someone provides information about the offence. This information is given orally or in writing and includes the name, complaint address, time, date, and location of the crime, details of the crime, and a description of the offence. There is a form on which the police register the FIR, which is duly signed by the complainant. The police should also give the complainant a copy of the FIR.

  1. Why should there be a rule that confessions made while in custody are not admissible as evidence against the accused?

Ans: Since the accused may have been subjected to torture, pressure, or a change in confessions while in custody, it should be a rule that confessions made during custody cannot be utilised as evidence against the accused. As a result, they must appear in court and tell the truth in front of the judge.

  1. Define a judge’s role in the criminal justice system.

Ans: The judge’s role is as follows.

  • Listen to the witnesses.
  • Keep track of the evidence.
  • Make a note of the decision.
  • Decide on the amount or number of years the culprit will be imprisoned.
  • Pass the judgement.
  • Conduct a fair trial.


FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

1. Why is the rule of law important in a fair trial?

The rule of law, which states that everyone is equal before the law, is meaningless unless the Constitution guarantees everyone a fair trial. Justice is served after the victim receives a fair trial. Both the Constitution and the law state that all critical individuals must carry out their duties correctly. This means that they must all coordinate to ensure that everyone, regardless of class, caste, gender, religion, or ideological affiliation, receives a fair trial when charged.

2. What are the conditions of a fair trial?

Following an investigation, a court of law determines whether or not the accused person is guilty. The Constitution guarantees a fair trial to anyone accused of a crime. It’s worth noting that the judge bases his decision solely on the facts presented in court. The judge will not rule on the basis of a lack of evidence. Instead, the judge maintains his impartiality, and when presented with evidence in court, he conducts a fair trial and punishes the offender.

3. What position does the judge hold within the criminal justice system?

The judge has the responsibility to conduct the trial fairly and openly. Every eyewitness and piece of evidence presented by the defence and prosecution is heard by the judge. Based on the supplied factual evidence and the law, the judge determines whether the accused is guilty or innocent. The defendant will receive a sentence from the court if proven guilty. The judge may impose a prison term, a fine, or both, depending on the legislation.