India-UK are deliberating the scope of sharing criminal records
- India is deliberating the scope of criminal records to be shared with the United Kingdom, four years after a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the two countries.
- The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) is examining the format under which criminal records could be exchanged.
About the initiative
- It would include sharing criminal records information, fingerprints, and intelligence according to the MoU signed in January 2018
- The Ministry is examining the scope of using Crime and Criminal Tracking Network and Systems (CCTNS) to cull out the required details
- India and the U.K. are in discussions to strengthen cooperation through the Home Affairs Dialogue and Roadmap 2030.
- The Dialogue covers issues such as migration, law enforcement priorities and criminal justice cooperation
About the MoU
- It was signed during the Indian PM's visit to the U.K.
- It was on Cooperation and Exchange of Information for the Purposes of Combating International Criminality and Tackling Serious Organised Crime.
- The MoU was to establish a mechanism for the exchange of criminal records, immigration records and intelligence.
Significance of the move
- It will assist the police in protecting the public from known criminals, including sex offenders”
- It will also allow the courts in both countries to access more information to support tougher sentencing decisions
- It will further strengthen cooperation in fighting international criminality and serious organised crime.
- Sharing biometrics of accused or convicted persons with foreign countries may have legal ramifications as it could be challenged on grounds of breach of privacy.
- Sharing criminal records between two countries is a laudable step as it will pace up procedures to punish criminals and prevent crimes but breach of privacy of people should also be taken care of during this process and robust mechanisms must be placed for the same.