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Report No. 198

(Q) 11. Should a person be held liable to punishment if he discloses the identity of any protected person without the authorization of the Court that granted the protection? If so, what punishment should be prescribed?

(i) All the respondents have agreed that any breach of the statutory provision regarding maintenance of confidentiality must be made punishable and punished severely.

We recommend that the unauthorized disclosure by any person of the identity of a witness admitted to a Witness Protection Programme must be made an offence under the proposed law and must be made severely punishable.

(ii) As regards the quantum of punishment, the suggestions of the respondents ranged from 3 years to 7 years and fine between Rs.5000 and Rs.50,000.

We recommend that having regard to the fact that we are proposing Witness Protection Programmes for offences triable by a Sessions Court, breach of security as to identity must be visited with a punishment of 3 years with fine which may go upto Rs.10,000.



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