This is a technique primarily used in criminal cases to identify the accused
in court. The idea of this procedure is to see if witnesses can identify the
accused among various people. The Indian Evidence Act, of 1872 deals, inter alia,
with the admissibility and inadmissibility of evidence in court, including the
examination of witnesses and the evidentiary value of documents submitted to the
Court of First Instance1.
Test identification is useful to law enforcement, not as evidence in court.
Judges are off duty in test identification parade arrangements, largely like
police, but if an identifier misidentifies her, the whole investigation could
well be sidetracked and the investigation never resolved in an identification
A disadvantage to testing is that this is a parade recommendation to officers
that specific procedures must be clearly explained to investigators and that
police should not be involved during inspection identification parades.
Governments should increase their capacity to conduct test identification
parades. It's carried out in its usual location, but the windows should be
tinted so that these key people can see what's going on instead of the judges,
The Test Identification Parade is governed by Section 540-A of the Criminal
Procedure Code, 1973 and Section 9 of the Indian Evidence Act, 1872. Nothing in
the Code of Criminal Procedure authorizes investigative authorities to organize
parades or to give defendants the right to demand parades. Sec 162 of CrPC
effectively regulates these parades. Also, in the case of Rajesh and Anr v.
3, the court ruled that refusal to participate in the process
identification parade could not be grounds for conviction.
History Of Tip
Until 2005, there were no specific provisions in the Evidence Law or the Code of
Criminal Procedure for identifying defendants. A 2005 amendment to the CRPC
introduced a new Section 54 that required testing for the identification ofan
arrested person. A test identification parade should be held as soon as possible
with the necessary protections and precautions. However, test identification is
not required if the defendant has been seen several times at different times and
places by witnesses4.
For hundreds of years, India has had a lively identity parade. This greatly
contributes to the speeding up of investigations and early resolution of
incidents. Test identification parades can be conducted by police
officers,magistrates, or individuals. However, it can only retain evidential
value under section 80 of the Evidence Act 1872 if it is done by the magistrate
himself and the court presumes its credibility5.
If conducted by a T.I.P. Police Officer/Judge of the Peace, witnesses
identifying the accused may be questioned duringthe trial. Up. Generally done in
Dacoity, Riots, and Heinous Crimes. Identification is an act of the mind that
takes advantage of the opportunity to see the victim. Observation should be good
because older men cannot find the accusedas easily as young men can easily find
Test Of Credibility
The reliability of identification by identifiers in terms of the test
identification parade varies from situation to situation and from case to case.
The timing, severity of the incident, the actions perpetrated by the offender,
and the traumatic experience at the time such an event occurred, record
permanent scars on the victim's mind and identifiers, making it clear who
committed the act. remember to the time, place, and number of people involved
all play a part. If this took place during the day in an open area, the victim
may have had enough light to clearly identify the person, including whether the
person had their face covered.
Identification is not considered adequate if the individual covers the face or
other body parts, as the classifier cannot identify the individual. We believe
the court will decide whether to hold the parade depending on the circumstances
of the case. In the case of the Raman Bhai Narayan Bhai Patel v. AIR, Gujarat
(1999) SCC6 case, the attack took place in broad daylight, and the courts ruled
that if the crime was committed in broad daylight, the witnesses would
easily remember and identify the person. said to be identifiable. A conviction
was committed based on identification by the Test Identification Parade.
In the case of Dana Yadav v. State of Bihar
AIR (2002) SCC7, the Supreme Court
of India held that the sole purposeof a TIP was to corroborate the court and
identify the defendant and should be identified in the court. I made a clear
decision. Generally, not used if the suspect's name is not mentioned before the
initial investigation or police.
In Anil Kumar vs. U.P. State.
AIR (2003) SCC8, the Hon'ble Supreme Court of
India held that retention of TIP was not mandatory and the defendant had no right
to assert the retention of her TIP. The delay in arresting TIP is not fatal, but
efforts should be made to arrest the defendant as quickly as possible so as not
to expose witnesses to the defendant's pranks.
The credibility of the identification done by the identifier a regard to the
test identification parade, the credibility varies from circumstance to
circumstance and case to case. The time, severity of the incident acts done by
the criminal, such traumatic experiences when done, it
registers a permanent scar in the mind of the victim or identifier, that they
remember the person who did the act clearly.
Even time of the day when the act
was committed, place of occurrence, no of people involved, everything comes in
to play. If done during the day time in an open place, it can be that there was
enough lighting for the victim to clearly identify the person, similarly,
whether the persons covered their faces, etc all comes into consideration.
Conditions For The Identification Parade
- It is for the satisfaction of the prosecution that investigation was
moving in the right direction 9.
- It is to test the strength and trustworthiness of the evidence 10.
- It acts as corroborative evidence 11.
- It is to test the ability of the witness to recognize the suspect 12.
- It is to corroborate the substantive evidence in the process of cross-
examination of the witness 13.
- Police held identification parade to enable witnesses to identified the
properties which are the subject matter of offence and to identify the person 14.
- It is to check the veracity of the witnesses who claim to see the
accused i.e. to test the memory of witnesses and they can be considered as an eye-witness 15.
Constitutionality Of Test Identification Parade
A magistrate's order requiring a person to attend test identification parade
does not violate his fundamental right under Article 20(3) of the Constitution.
The identification of the accused at TIP by someone not accused's own act. His
mere attendance or exhibition of body cannot be regarded as furnishing any
positive volitional evidentiary act16.
Article 20(3)of the Constitution of India is also not violated by compelling an
accused to stand up and show his face for the purpose of identification. It does
not amount to giving of testimony as to the final facts. He can also be
ordered to disclose any scar or mark on his body for the purpose of
During the course of investigation, witnesses may say that they will identify
the culprits, if they were shown to them, they will identify the properties, if
the properties are produced before them. Therefore, the necessity of holding of
testof identification parade during the investigation is necessary to test the
memory and veracity of the witness does arise.
Test of identification parade is
integral part of investigation. In regard to the admissibility of test of
identification parade, they are relevant by virtue of Section 9 of Indian
Evidence Act. Hon'ble Supreme Court of India was pleased toopine in Budhasen V.
State of A.P
.18 that the T.I.P. has two fold objectives:
- Establishing identity of the accused and corroborating the identity of
witness before trial.
- TIP also tests the memory of the witnesses.
Generally speaking, accused cannot demand TIP as a matter of right but if
demanded, never turn down such demand. If the prosecution turns down the request
of the accused for identification, it runs the risk of the veracity of the eye
witnesses being challenged on that ground, as held in Lajjaram v. State
Identification evidence is highly persuasive to triers of fact. There is an
intuitive sense that when someone witnesses a stranger commit a crime, he or she
should be able to remember that face. After all, we see and remember faces every
day. However, more than four decades of research has revealed this assumption to
be flawed, there is clear evidence that witnesses often struggle with accurately
recognizing the face of a stranger perpetrator20. Indeed, although eyewitness
testimony can be an important and valuable form of evidence, eyewitness
identification errors are a leading cause of wrongful convictions in many
The evidence which requires particular attention is identification evidence,
which resembles confession evidence in being, at the same time, both extremely
compelling and potentially unreliable. Witnesses are frequently required to
identify persons whom they have only seen fleetingly and often in confused
circumstances. The identification of the perpetrator is often the only issue
that needs to be determined in a criminal trial22.
Mistaken identity may often occur in good faith, but the effects can be
extremely serious for the defendant and, for this reason, there is an obvious
need for caution in relation to such evidence. As with evidence of lies by the
defendant, the hazards associated with identification evidence are addressed by
means of a Judge's direction, but there are additional safeguards which apply
where the identification has been made by means of a formal procedure conducted
under police supervision, such as an identification parade23.
Analysis Of Supreme Court Judgment
Kedar Singh Vs. State Of Bihar Air (1999) Scc 24In this case, the Hon'ble Supreme Court ruled that because there is never
complete darkness, individuals could be identified even at night in complete
darkness. There may be other ways to identify individuals. For example, body
type, clothing, gait, voice, etc. Therefore, if a defendant hides his face, he
can be identified by his gait, tattoos, watch, voice,clothing, shoes, and body
type. This type of evidence is called indirect/circumstantial evidence.
Heera Vs. State Of Rajasthan Air (2007) Scc 25In this case, all major judgments related to test identification parade are
referred by the court in order to give the decision for the case. It was that
7-armed people came and hit members working at a petrol station at 2 am in the
morning, threw stones due to which glass broke, and due to the stone, they woke
up. They beat the people with lathisand robbed 12000 rupees from them, even when
the neighbour came to see what was happening, he was also attacked with lathis.
Recovery was made of items as per section 27 of the Evidence Act,1872 etc. was
admissible, Test identification parade was conducted by a civil judge and
magistrate, the necessary terms of conducting a parade was told by the court,
the court said something like test identification parade is only tested and has
no place for provision in court or evidence. Accused were identified, all
requisite procedure was adhered to and the appeal was dismissed as there
wasnothing wrong in the judgement of the lower court, and identification parade
is right in the case.
Raju Manjhi Vs. State Of Bihar 26Judgment in this landmark case was handed down by Judge N. V. Ramana and Hon'ble
MR. Judge Mohan M. Shantanagodar. The lower court where the appeal was filed was
the Patna High Court. In fact, one night a year,nearly 10 to 12 people between
the ages of 20 and 26
broke into Kamdeosin's house, stole things, and complaints were filed, leading
to police investigations. The injured were taken to hospital after the location
of their injuries was determined.
A number of witnesses were questioned, and the
lower court claimed it followed the cinematic nature of the story and continued
its investigation. No witness identifications were made during the test
identification parade, but this does not mean that the accusations against the
defendants are false. and not for any other purpose. The identification
parade moves into the investigation phase.
Habib Vs. State Of Bihar 27In this case, the Hon'ble Supreme Court is T.I.P.'s weak proof. As a rule of
caution, if the only evidence against the defendant is identification by a
witness, this should not be considered sufficient to justify a conviction.
Amit Singh Bhikam Singh Vs. State Of Maharashtra 28In this case the Hon'ble Supreme Court held that T.I.P. doesn't constitute
Evidence but can only be used for corroboration of statement in the court. The
Evidentiary value of T.I.P. conducted at the Investigation stage, cannot be
considered as important Substantial Evidence and also conviction can't be
based/founded on the sole reason of T.I.P.,the witness Identification is
required in the court in order to convict.
Facets Of Test Identification Parade
- Evidence of sniffer dogs:
In Abdul Razzak v. State of Maharashtra 29, it was
held by the Supreme Court that the evidence of dog tracking is admissible but
ordinarily, is not of much weight. The possibly of misunderstanding between the
dog and its master is close to its heels. The possibility of misrepresenting or
wrong inference from the behaviour of dogs cannot be ruled out.
- Identification by finger print:
The accepted conclusion of science is that
several fixed and typical variety of ridges on fingertips are clearly
distinguishable and that the chance of two individuals bearing the same
combinationof such marks are so small as to be negligible. Hence identity of
finger marks is the strongest evidence of the identity of person and such
evidence is admissible.
- Joint Test Identification Parade (TIP):
In Sheikh Sintha Madhar alias Jaffar
alias Sintha v. State 30, it was held that there is no invariable rule that that
the two accused persons cannot be made part of the same test identification
parade. Joint Test Identification Parade does in no manner affects the validity
of Test Identification Parade.
The purpose of holding a TIP is just to ensure
that whether the investigation is going on the right track ornot and is merely a
corroborative evidence. If the accused is already known to the witness, Test
Identification Parade does not hold much value and it is the identification in
the court which is of utmost importance.
The probative value of the test identification parade is absolute, the use of
the test identification parade as mandatory evidence is outdated, and the test
identification parade has only a corroborative value as evidence.
As explained more detailed manner in the cases section of the paper, in the case
of State of Himachal Pradesh vs Lekhraj31 it was mentioned that "Test
identification is considered a safe principle of judiciousness for
authentication of the sworn testimony of various evidentiary value people
appearing as witnesses in court with regards to the character of theaccused.
There may anyway be special cases to this general principle when for instance
the court is intrigued by a specific observer on whose testimony it can securely
depend without such or other corroboration32.
A parade taken at an inquest is not considered material substantive evidence, a
conviction may be based on the sole grounds of a test identification parade, and
a conviction requires the identification of witnesses in court. Even if the same
people who came forward in the parade came forward in court, the added value
would be the same.
Test identification is usually required when the suspect's identity is in
jeopardy. This is necessary for situations wherethe victim has never met the
suspect before the incident. Usually, when a crime is inflicted on a victim, the
victim can see the offender and later identify the offender using various
mechanisms such as build, height, etc. If the investigator can identify the
person, a test identification parade will be held in such cases. The parade
should be held as close aspossible, including in front of the Magistrate33.
Pakistan: An identification parade is an investigative tool used by police to
identify criminals when there are witnesses. It is to provide the suspect of a
crime with a person (dummy) that matches their description. Witnesses are then
required to identify the suspect from the individual. Indeed, neither the
Criminal Procedure Code of 1898 nor his Qanun- e-Shahadat Ordinance of 1984
provides any instructions or details on how to conduct an identity test. Article
22 of the Qanun-e-Shahadat Regulations 1984, which is commonly referred to for
identifying tests,refers only to their relevance and does not provide
Specific guidelines to be followed when conducting an identification parade are
set out in the Rules and Orders of the Lahore High Court, Volume 3, Chapter 11,
Part C.392. The details of the identification parade procedure will be recorded
in the case file and the certification of the identification parade procedure
will be attached to the courtrecords34.
Malaysia: The entire process of identifying the parade is detailed in Maral's
Criminal Case, 2013. The identification parade should be conducted as soon as
possible and all available witnesses should be invited to the first parade. Good
practice in England is that the parade should be conducted by the officer on
duty in charge of the police station, not by the officer in charge of the
investigation. Witnesses must be allowed to see the accuseduntil all
preparations have been made and they have gone to find the accused, and must not
be pre-corroborated by photographs or oral or written descriptions.
The line-up of persons in the identification parade should be of similar
character. It is a settled practise for the police to parade persons of similar
height, built and ages and the same nationality of the suspect of to identify
the suspect (R v. Dickman35, 1910; R v. Bundy, R 272). When the accused had
brown eyes and the person with such brown eyes had not been mixed in the parade
the evidence of the identification had to be rejected (Chander v. S A36, 1973).
When theaccused is a bearded man, with a tape on his neck waited with the
outside the magistrate's court and among five other persons in the parade none
was similarly bearded the evidence hadto be rejected (Yeshwant v. S A, 1973).
United Kingdom: The Court of Appeal in R v Turnbull 37 prescribed rules to
guide Judges faced with contested visual identification evidence. The guidelines
are also applicable in cases of voice recognition or identification. The
guidelines are aimed at assessing the quality of the identification.
Guidelines are as follows:
- When a case depends wholly or substantially on the correctness of one or
more identifications of the accused which the defence claims are mistaken, the judge
should warn the jury of the special need for caution before convicting the
accused in reliance on the identification. In particular he should instruct them
of the reason for the need for this warning and make some reference to the
possibility that a mistaken witness can be a convincing witness and that a
number of witnesses can all be mistaken. There is no prescribed form of words.
- The judge should direct the jury to examine closely the circumstances in
which the identification by each witness came to be made.
South Africa: In S v Hlalikaya and others 38 is an example of a case where a
suspect refused to cooperate in the holding of the usual type of identification
parade. No adverse inference was drawn from non-cooperation, but the court did
receive in evidence the results of the so-called photographic identification
parade, which was held by police in lieu of the ordinary parade. The court
concluded that the accused did not have a constitutional right to
legal representation at a photo identification parade and accordingly, whether or
not they were advised that their legal representative could be present at the
parade, was immaterial. The court further stated that if an accused were
entitled to legal representation at a photo identification parade, then the
In S v Thapedi
39 , it was held that the accused may ask for a legal
representative to assist him during the conduct of an identity parade, although
the failure to provide legal assistance at that stage does not per se amount to
parade evidence being obtained unconstitutionally.
- Evidence Of TIP Inadmissible If Suspects Were Shown To Witnesses
Was held by Supreme Court40: Even a TIP conducted in the presence of a
police officer is inadmissible, the bench of Justices BR Gavai and PS
Narasimha observed, In this case, the High Court of Kerala upheld the conviction
of the accused under Sections 143, 147, 148 of the Indian Penal Code, and
Sections 3(2)(e) of Prevention of Damages to Public Property Act, 1984, read
with Section 149 of the IPC.
The conviction was mostly based on the evidence of TIP. The accused were
allegedly involved in a violent protest against the Kerala Government decision
to delink pre degree courses from colleges and start plus two courses at the
school level. The protesters had become violent and caused damage to as many as
81 buses belonging to the Kerala State Road Transport Corporation leading to the
death of a bus conductor with KSRTC.
- Test Identification Parade Can't Be Permitted After Lapse Of
Held by Karnataka HC41: The Karnataka High Court has made it clear that
Test Identification Parade is to ascertain the identity of accused
persons and cannot be conducted after lapse of several years, as there
is risk of the witnesses having lost proper memory. It thus set aside an
order passed by the trial court permitting the investigating officer to
conduct a TIP of an accused after 11
years of filing.
- Rajasthan HC Issues Guidelines For Test Identification Parade:
In POCSO Cases,
Orders Lower Courts For Immediate Implementation in POCSO Trials42: In a
significant ruling, the Rajasthan High Court, Jaipur has issued guidelines for
Test Identification Parade (TIP) in POCSO Cases. The court ruled that special
Judges of POCSO Act cases and all the District & Sessions Judges of the State
shall ensure the immediate implementation of this order with all the judicial
officers and in all the respective courts.
- Not Prudent To Convict An Accused Solely On Basis Of
Identification For The First Time In Court Without Test Identification
Parade: Supreme Court43: Clarifying an important aspect regarding
Test Identification Parade (TIP), the
Supreme Court on Monday held that it would not be prudent to convict an accused
solely on the basis of their identification for the first time in court.
A Division Bench comprising of Justices MR Shah and Aniruddha Bose held that:
"Even applying the law laid down by this Court in the aforesaid decisions. It is
a fundamental principle of criminal justice that the defendant's guilt must be
proven beyond a reasonable doubt. Another common thread running through the
criminal justice network is that he has two possible views on the evidence
presented in the case, that the accused is guilty and that theaccused is
innocent the view which is favourable to the accused should be adopted. Kali Ram
Vs. State of Himachal Pradesh 44.
- Absence of Test Identification Parade may not be ipso facto
sufficient to discard testimony of witness who has identified accused in Court held by SC45:
While acquitting the appellants of the offences of allegedly transporting huge
quantity of spirit without license, on ground of doubtful prosecution case, the
Supreme Court has stated that that Test Identification Parade is a part of
investigation and it is not substantive evidence.
The question of holding Test Identification Parade arises when the accused is
not known to the witness earlier and the identification by a witness of the
accused in the Court who has for the first time seen the accused in the incident
of offence is a weak piece of evidence especially when there is a large time gap
between the date of the incident and the date of recording of his evidence,
added the Court.
- Godra Train Burning case 46:
In this case, comprising Justices P S Narasimha
and J B Pardiwala, that the first convict who had challenged the sentence was
identified in the Test Identification Parade. "He was pelting stones with the
motive of not letting passengers come out. The role of the second convict is
also clear," he submitted.
- Video Identification:
In the paper-based world, law assumes a process which is mutually understood
and observed by all the parties. Almost without thinking, a four-part
process takes place, involving acquisition, identification, evaluation and
admission. When we try to apply this process to digital evidence, we see
that we have a new set ofproblems 47.
Nowadays, in most countries live parades have now been largely replaced by video
parades, an innovation that has been made possible by the development of
sophisticated computer systems used to compile video images from a standardised
database of moving video clips48. In Britain, two different IT systems are in
widespread use toprovide video identification: VIPER (Video Identification
Parade Electronic Recording) and PROMAT (Profile Matching). Each system has its
own database of images.
- Forensic Identification:
When false eyewitness identifications and wrongful convictions are
discovered, they are usually exposed through post-conviction DNA testing.
However, in the vast majority of criminal cases, DNA evidence has either
been destroyed49 or, more commonly, never even existed in the first place50
This, of course, poses a significant problem for the innocent defendant
convicted based primarily on eyewitness evidence.
- Voice Identification:
Voice itself may be an issue in a criminal case, inasmuch as it may itself
be a personal characteristic upon which an
identification of a criminal depends. It thus seems appropriate that we have in
recent years seen the coining of the word ear-witness for the witness who heard,
rather than saw51 something.
- Previous Identification:
Where, in criminal proceedings, a witness gives evidence identifying the
accused as the person who committed the offence charged, evidence of a
previous identification of the accused by that witness may
be given, either by the witness
himself or by any other person who witnessed the previous identification 52 for
example a police officer who conducted a formal identification procedure such as
a video identification or an identification parade, as evidence of
In R v. Christie
54 is the leading authority that if witnesses testify that they
have identified the accused as the perpetrator, they can also present evidence
that they have previously identified the accused. Basically, prioridentification
can violate her three rules of exclusion: the hearsay rule, the rule against
selfish remarks, and the ruleagainst non-expert opinion evidence.
Considering the above guidelines and the meticulousness and diligence required
to ensure the transparency and accuracy of the identification process, it is the
personal opinion of the authors that the results of the test identification
parade should be regarded as adequate and acceptable evidence in comparison.
Before a trial court if you do not follow any of the above procedures and you
are able to directions to the witness. Furthermore, in contrast to a
parade surrounded by groups of similarly positioned people, it is the only person
or group that occupies the box designated for the defendant in court, thus
identifying the defendant in court. It's pretty easy to do.
It should also be noted that the test identification parade is held by
investigative authorities as soon as possible after the suspect's arrest and
before the suspect is taken to the court of first instance. In the court of
first instance, the defendant loses the meaning of subsequent audit results.
Delay in holding the first identification in court affect the reliability of the
evidence. The purpose of test identification is to test and strengthen the
trustworthiness of the evidence regarding identification of the accused in the
court. Hence, the absence of test identification parade would not always be
detrimental for the prosecution but it depends on the facts and circumstances of
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Award Winning Article Is Written By: Mr.Abhishek Kumar - LLB 3rd Year Ajeenkya Dy Patil University
Authentication No: AP347417860969-18-0423
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