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Can the police search the mobile phone?  - 'How to hold it and take off your underwear'

Can the police search the mobile phone? – ‘How to hold it and take off your underwear’

Thiruvananthapuram, First Posted Aug 3, 2021 at 7:37 PM IST

Thiruvananthapuram: A video of a police team seizing the mobile phone of an uninsured two-wheeler in Malappuram and questioning locals has been circulating on social media. Everyone asks who gave the police the power to do this. Do the police really have such power? Questions are being raised about the circumstances in which the police can seize a mobile phone.

It is a well known fact that there is no connection between an insurance document and a mobile phone. In such a situation, the police have no authority to seize or search someone’s mobile phone. It is also a violation of the fundamental rights of the citizen. But a person’s mobile phone is not something that the police can fully check.

However, Thiruvananthapuram’s lawyer Ajith Sasthamangalam said police are not allowed to seize someone’s phone during a vehicle search. “Grabbing and checking someone’s cell phone you see on the road is like taking off your underwear,” he said.

He said it was clear at a glance that the action of Malappuram Traffic SI Indurani and his colleagues was a violation of fundamental rights. But there are also cases where the police have the legal authority to seize and search a mobile phone. “His phone may be stopped with the permission of the court as part of the defendant’s investigation in a case,” lawyer Ajith said.

“Police may search a suspect’s phone without court permission as part of an investigation into piracy of a movie,” says Superior Court attorney PJ Paulson. ‘If a person is suspected of being involved in a case like this, the police can do it if they need to check their phone. But if you want to be detained after a phone check, you need the permission of the court, ” he said.

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It is the responsibility of the citizen to know the laws of the country. Problems can be avoided by being careful not to break the law. Citizens should be careful not to engage in criminal activity, including downloading and viewing counterfeit movies as soon as they are released while using the phone. Attorney Paulson said it would be easier for police to take a person to court if they find criminal content on the phone, even if it is illegally seized.

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Last Updated August 3, 2021 8:22 PM IST