Reasonable and reasonable suspicion legally defines
S J Tubrazy
The word “reasonable” has been defined in Chambers 21st Century Dictionary as under:–
“Reasonable: 1. sensible; rational; showing reason or good judgment 2 willing to listen to reason or arguments 3. In accordance with reason 4 fair or just moderates; not extreme or excessive.”
In Raghbir Singh v. CIT (AIR 1958 Punjab 250) the word “reasonable” has been interpreted as rational according to the dictates of reason and not excessive or immoderate. An act is reasonable when it is conformable or agreeable to reason, having regard to the facts of the particular controversy. The Supreme Court of India in case of Rena Drago v. Lalchand Soni (1998) 3 SCC 341 observed that it is difficult to give an exact definition of the word “reasonable”. Reason varies in its conclusions according to the idiosyncrasy of the individual and the times and the circumstances in which he thinks. The word “reasonable” has in law prima meaning of reasonable in regard to those circumstances of which the actor, called upon to act reasonable, knows or ought to know. The concept or reasonable does not exclude notions of morality and ethics.
The words “reasonable suspicion” has been defined in Judicial Dictionary 13th Edition. K J Aiyar as under:
“What is a reasonable complaint or reasonable suspicion, no doubt depends upon the facts of each case, but it should be at least founded upon some definite’ feelings tending to throw suspicion on the person arrested and the proceedings.
Suspicion and credible information. what is a reasonable suspicion or credible information must depend on the circumstances of each particular case, but it must be based on some definite facts tending to throw suspicion on a .person arrested and not on mere vague surmises or’ information.”
The same words have been defined in Black’s Law Dictionary 17th Edition as under:
“reasonable suspicion. A particularized and objective basis, supported by specific and articulable facts, for suspecting a person of criminal activity. A police officer must have a reasonable suspicion to stop a person in a public place.”
It will be noticed by reading the suspicion that the word `suspicion’ has been qualified with the word `reasonable’, therefore while forming the opinion, as required under subsection (4), the opinion must be based on some reasons which shall serve as links between the material on which the suspicion is based and the opinion.