Good Samaritans and bystanders, who rush road crash victims to hospitals or inform police may not be asked to disclose their identities as the government has issued standard operating procedures (SOPs) in this regard.
As per the SoPs, good Samaritans have to be dealt with 'respectfully' and such person must be asked to reveal personal details, including full name, address and phone number unless he/ she volunteers to become an eyewitness.
"In case a good Samaritan chooses to be a witness, his examination by the investigating officer shall, as far as possible, be conducted at a time and place of his convenience such as his place of residence or business, and the investigation officer shall be dressed in plain clothes, unless the good Samaritan chooses to visit the police station," says the SOP re-notified on Friday.
The SOP also specifies that in case a Good Samaritan choses to visit the police station, he/ she shall be examined in a single sitting in a "reasonable and time-bound manner".
Even it will be the responsibility of the investigating officer (IO) to arrange for an interpreter to interact with a good Samaritan, if he speaks a language that the IO can't understand.
Annually 1.4 lakh people die in road crashes in India and government reports suggest that at least 50 per cent of the fatalities can be averted if the victims are admitted to a hospital within the first one hour of a crash, called the 'golden hour'.
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