Law & Psychiatry in India: An Overview

The application of legal knowledge to psychiatry and of psychiatric knowledge to the legal issues is the subspecialty of psychiatry known as forensic psychiatry. In India, forensic psychiatry is still in its infancy. The legal issues pertaining to the mental health care in India appeared only after British Rule, with very minimal changes occurring post independence. Currently, the training of psychiatry postgraduates to the idea of an interface between law and psychiatry is poor. It is neglected, ignored, misinterpreted and misunderstood. To meet the standards of the developed world and international covenants, there is a pressing need by psychiatric community in the region to understand the existing legislation and to initiate changes through various agencies and regulatory bodies. This paper attempts to elucidate the interface of law and psychiatry in India in a nutshell.
Keywords: Law; Psychiatry; India

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