Elucidate the key differences in Section 144 of CrPC and Curfew while highlighting their role in crowd control.
When a group of people assembles with an intention of disturbing the public tranquility, such assembly is known as an unlawful assembly. Section 144 of Criminal Procedure Code(CrPC) & Curfew provisions are used to prevent such assemblies.
Section 144 of CrPC empowers the executive magistrate to prohibit the unlawful assembly of five or more people in the area in which it is imposed. After the imposition of section 144, obstructing police from taking such unlawful assembly is also a punishable offence. Such members can also be booked for “engaging in rioting”. Section 144 also empowers the authorities to block the internet access.
On the other hand Curfew orders, people to stay indoor for a specific time period. This can be very helpful while handling the violent situation. The curfew orders can be for a specific group or for the general public. It prohibits any outdoors activity without prior police approval. Only essential services are allowed to run while markets, schools are ordered to remain shut.
These provisions are used in situations like rioting, violent protests, stone pelting, damage to public property. Stern action should be taken against those who take law and order in hand. This will act a deterrent for such activities in future.