The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Home Affairs met on Friday and decided to withhold the draft report for three bills aimed at replacing existing criminal laws.
This decision was made following a request by the Lok Sabha Leader of the Opposition and Congress leader, Adhir Ranjan Chowdhary, along with other opposition leaders like P. Chidambaram of the Congress, Derek O'Brien of the TMC, and NR Elango of the DMK. They requested more time to review the drafts and raised concerns about the bill names.
The next committee meeting is scheduled for November 6, 2023. Earlier, the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Home Affairs, chaired by BJP MP Brij Lal, began its review in the committee room of the Parliament House Annexe.
The panel reviewed draft reports for three bills: "The Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita 2023," "The Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha Sanhita 2023," and "The Bharatiya Sakshya 2023."
These bills are intended to replace the existing criminal laws, namely the Indian Penal Code (IPC) 1860, Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) 1973, and the Indian Evidence Act 1872.
When introducing the bills, Home Minister Amit Shah emphasized that these new laws aim to protect the rights granted by the Constitution to Indian citizens, in contrast to British-era laws designed to maintain colonial rule and punish rather than deliver justice. The focus of the new laws is on delivering justice, with punishment applied where necessary to deter crime.
The Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha Sanhita Bill, replacing the CrPC, will now consist of 533 sections, with 160 sections modified, nine new sections added, and nine sections repealed.
The Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita Bill, which replaces the IPC, will have 356 sections instead of the previous 511, with 175 sections amended, eight new sections added, and 22 sections repealed.
The Bharatiya Sakshya Bill, replacing the Evidence Act, will contain 170 sections, with 23 sections modified, one new section added, and five repealed.