Good Samaritan Law – Samaritans detained by cops

Good Samaritan Law – Samaritans detained by cops

Good Samaritan Law- Bengaluru Samaritans complain they are detained by cops in a survey

A survey conducted reveals that 8 out of 10 people in the country is unaware of the 2016 Good Samaritan Law.  This Law aims to encourage citizens to offer first aid to victims.

The city of Chennai and Bengaluru respondents have the least awareness about the law.  Chennai stands at 93% and Bengaluru at 92%.

Good Samaritan Law :

This laws offer legal protection to people who give reasonable assistance to those who are, or who they believe to be, injured, ill, in peril, or otherwise incapacitated. By contrast, a duty to rescue law requires people to offer assistance and holds those who fail to do so liable.

Good Samaritan laws generally provide basic legal protection for those who assist a person who is injured or in danger. In essence, these laws protect the “Good Samaritan” from liability if unintended consequences result from their assistance.

Why is Good Samaritan law important?

Ensuring that Good Samaritans are protected from liability claims or legal actions as a result of their assistance.  It is important for ensuring that people are not afraid to render assistance to strangers when required to do so.

80% of citizens are not aware of their rights of not being harassed by either police or hospital.  None of the hospitals have displayed in their premises the Good Samaritan Charter. Hospitals are required to the public a charter in Hindi, English and regional language.

The Good Samaritan law aims to encourage people to offer first-aid to accidental victims without fear of harassment by police.  It also provides for financial help to good Samaritans who help victims in a timely manner. They will be exempted from repeated attendance in court and police station.

Percentage of awareness about the Good Samaritan Law:

India 16%

Bengaluru 8%

Indore 29%

Jaipur 28%

Chennai 7%

A large group of a police station and hospitals demand for contact details of Good Samaritans who help the victims.  57% of hospital employees and 64% of police admitted to asking contact details of good Samaritans.

The Police also agreed that they pressurize the good Samaritans to become a witness in case of helping accident victims.  9% of police admitted that they forcibly detain the bystanders to become the witness.  31% of the said eyewitnesses are accused by the police according to the lawyers who deal with the case.

Most of the people are willing to help except a small group of people who wants to escort the accident victims to hospitals or calling the police or an ambulance.

Reasons for not helping includes being scared of police harassment, getting involved in an unwanted legal tangle and being unaware of the Good Samaritan law.

Solutions :

The main solution is in having a state-specific Good Samaritan laws

Grievance redressal mechanism for good Samaritans

A reward and recognition system

A penalty system for police and hospitals that do not adhere to the law

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