MENTAL DISEASES ordinance

Arrangement of Sections

1. Short title.

2. Application to District Court to inquire into the state of mind of persons suspected to be of unsound mind.

3. Proceedings thereupon by the District Court.

4. Continuation of inquiry after remand of a suspected person.

5. If no relative or friend will undertake custody of such person he shall be sent to a mental hospital.

6. Minister may, on petition of relatives admit such persons (not being paupers) into mental hospital.

7. Emergency orders.

8. Relatives may take persons confined in mental hospital under their own care.

9. Prisoners under sentence in jail on becoming of unsound mind to be removed to mental hospital.

10. Further proceeding at expiration of sentence, if the person shall not have recovered.

11. Inquiry as to property and circumstances in cases where no security is given.

12. Maintenance of persons in custody out of their own property.

13. Proceedings exempt from stamp duty.

14. Appointment of Visitors.

15. Minister to make regulations for conduct and management of mental hospitals.

16. Person escaping from mental hospital may be retaken by Superintendent within fourteen days.

17. Person escaping from mental hospital, not being an insane criminal, may be retaken after fourteen days with authority of District Judge.

18. Absence on trial.

19. Right of appeal from order of District Court.

20. Who may prosecute appeal.

21. Appeal to follow rules for appeals from interlocutory orders.

22. Duty of Court of Appeal and District Court in case of appeal.

23. Power to receive voluntary patients in mental hospitals.

24. Voluntary patient may leave mental hospital upon giving notice of intention to do so.

25. Notice to the Director of Health Services of the reception death and departure of voluntary patients.

26. Reports from the Superintendent of a mental hospital on voluntary patients under the age of sixteen years.

27. Discharge of voluntary patients from mental hospitals.

28. Power to receive temporary patients in mental hospitals.

29. Notice to the Director of Health Services of the reception death and departure of temporary patients.

30. Detention and discharge of temporary patients.

31. Power of the Director of Health Services to order discharge of voluntary and temporary patients.

32. Power to vary, forms in the Schedule.

33. Interpretation.

34. Substitution of the expression "insane criminal” for "criminal lunatic” in any written law.

SCHEDULE

SI 1 of 1873,

SI 3 of 1882,

SI 3 of 1883,

SI 2 of 1889,

SI 13 of 1905,

SI 16 of 1919,

SI 3 of 1940,

SI 13 of 1940,

SI 11 of 1943.

14 of 1952,

22 of 1955,

27 of 1956.

AN ORDINANCE to make further and better provision relating to the care and custody of persons or unsound mind and their estates.

[Date of Commencement: 9th January, 1873]

1. Short title.

This Ordinance may be cited as the Mental Diseases Ordinance.

2. Application to District Court to inquire into the state of mind of persons suspected to be of unsound mind.

Any officer of the police force, or Grama Seva Niladhari, or any private person having reason to believe that a person is of unsound mind, may apply in writing to the District Court having jurisdiction over the place in which such person so suspected is found, that his state of mind be inquired into. An application by a private person should be accompanied by a certificate from a medical practitioner that the person so suspected has been under his observation, and that he believes him to be of unsound mind.

3. Proceedings thereupon by the District Court.

(1) The District Court shall thereupon, with as little delay as possible, cause such person so suspected to be of unsound mind (hereafter called suspected person) to be brought before it, and, either then or at some other date for which the court may see reason to adjourn the inquiry, proceed to view and examine the said person, and, if need be, to hear evidence, to enable it to determine as to the state of mind of the said person.

(2) If upon such view and examination, or other proof, the District Court shall be satisfied that such person is or is not of unsound mind, it shall adjudicate accordingly :

Further observation.

Provided that it shall he lawful for the court, should it deem it necessary to subject the suspected person to further observation, to remand the suspected person once or oftener for such reasonable time as shall be specified in the order of remand to the custody of the Fiscal; and

Provided further, that it shall be the duty of the court so to remand such person in all cases where the court considers that the said person is of sound mind but two medical practitioners certify to the contrary.

(3) At the expiration of the time fixed for the remand the court shall hear evidence and find the said person of sound or of unsound mind as to it shall seems fit, and shall accordingly either discharge him or direct his further detention, as in section 5 provided.

(4) Places of remand for further observation.

All persons so remanded shall be kept in such place as the Minister shall appoint, and shall be subject to the inspection of such persons as the Minister shall nominate.

4. Continuation of inquiry after remand of a suspected person.

(1) Where a District Court, holding an inquiry under section 3 into the state of mind of a suspected person, deems it necessary to subject such person to further observation, and no house of observation within the jurisdiction of the court has been appointed by the Minister under that section, the court (hereinafter referred to as the original court) shall—

(a) before remanding the suspected person for further observation, hear all such evidence as may at the time be available as to the state of mind of such person; and

(b) after remanding the suspected person, transmit the record of the inquiry to the District Court (hereinafter referred to as the examining court) having jurisdiction over the place where the house of observation in which such person will be kept is situated.

(2) The examining court, on the expiration of the time fixed for the remand—

(a) shall continue the inquiry and hear evidence relating to the further observation to which the suspected person was subjected, and may for the purposes of such inquiry further remand such person once or oftener for similar observation; and

(b) shall, after consideration of all the evidence recorded at all stages of the inquiry, adjudicate on the question whether the suspected person is of sound or of unsound mind.

(3) After the expiration of the time fixed for the remand, the inquiry into the state of mind of the suspected person shall not be continued, whether by the original court under section 3 or by the examining court under this section, except in the presence of such person:

Provided, however, that where the state of health or the behaviour of such person is such as to render either his presence or his participation in the proceedings in a court-house undesirable, the District Court by which the inquiry is continued may either dispense with the presence of such person at the inquiry or continue the inquiry at the house of observation where such person is kept.

(4) Where the examining court, after inquiry continued under this section, adjudges the suspected person to be of unsound mind, the court shall direct the further detention of such person until an order under section 5 is made in respect of that person by the original court, and shall forthwith return the record of the inquiry to the original court to enable that court to make such order.

(5) Where the examining court, after inquiry continued under this section, adjudges the suspected person to be of sound mind, that court shall make order discharging such person.

Where any person so discharged does not have the necessary means to enable him to return to his home or other place of residence, the court shall make order directing such person to be conveyed by Government to his home or other place of residence or allowed such reasonable batta or sum for his travelling expenses thereto as shall be approved by the Minister by any rule or order to be issued for that purpose. Any order made under this subsection may contain such further directions as the court may consider necessary to secure the safe return of the discharged person to his home or other place of residence and the Fiscal shall give effect to such order.

(6) Any adjudication on the question whether the suspected person is of sound or unsound mind, and any order for the further detention or the discharge of the suspected person, made by the examining court under this section, shall be deemed for all purposes to be an adjudication or an order, as the case may be, made by the original court, and shall have effect accordingly.

5. If no relative or friend will undertake custody of such person he shall be sent to a mental hospital.

(1) If any fit relative or friend is prepared to undertake to enter into sufficient security for the proper custody, care, and maintenance of the person adjudged to be of unsound mind, it shall be lawful for the court to order that the person so adjudged should be placed in his charge and under his control. But if not fit relative or friend will undertake as aforesaid, the District Court shall order that such person be kept in custody until the Minister's pleasure shall be known; whereupon the Minister may issue his order to order the removal of such person to a mental hospital, and may give such further order for the safe custody of such person in such place or manner as to the Minister shall seem fit:

Provided that it shall be lawful for any relative or friend who shall have undertaken to enter into security as aforesaid, or who shall have entered into such security, to surrender such person to the court, whereupon it shall be the duty of the court to order that such person be kept in custody until the Minister's pleasure shall be known.

(2) Until the Minister's order shall be received it shall be the duty of the Fiscal to detain such person in the place appointed by the Minister for the reception of persons under remand for further observation.

6. Minister may, on petition of relatives admit such persons (not being paupers) into mental hospital.

It shall be lawful for the Minister upon any petition being presented by any guardian or relative or friend of any person of unsound mind, requesting that such person may be admitted into a mental hospital, and offering to enter into security for the expenses of his care and maintenance, to issue his warrant to the Superintendent of such mental hospital to direct that such person shall, on being brought to such mental hospital, be examined by two medical practitioners named in such warrant, and upon their granting a certificate of such person being of unsound mind, that he shall be thereupon admitted into the mental hospital, to be therein taken care of and maintained until his recovery, or until application be made for his discharge by any relative or friend, as hereinafter provided, or failure of payment of the rate hereinafter required:

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