Three new criminal laws come into force across India from July 1: What it means | India News

New Delhi: Three new Criminal LawsBharatiya Naya Sanhta, Indian citizens would be protectedAnd Bharatiya Sakshya Adhanim — who will replace him. British period The Indian Penal Code, the Code of Criminal Procedure, and the Indian Evidence Act, shall come into force respectively. July 1st2024.
The new laws, which were passed by the previous NDA government, aim to modernize India's criminal justice system by including provisions such as:

  • Zero FIR: Allowing people to lodge an FIR at any police station, irrespective of jurisdiction, to eliminate delays in initiating legal action.
  • Online registration of police complaints and electronic service of summons.
  • Compulsory videography of crime scenes for all heinous crimes to strengthen investigation.
  • Summons can be served electronically, speeding up the legal process, reducing paperwork, and ensuring effective communication between all parties involved.
  • Delivery of speedy justice with required judgments within 45 days of completion of trial and charges within 60 days of first hearing.
  • Addressing the sensitivity of crimes against women and children, including recording victim statements of women officers and speedy medical reports.
  • New provisions to deal with emerging crimes such as false promises of marriage, gang rape of minors, and mob violence.
  • For the first time, the definition of terrorism, with a wider scope to include the “economic security” of the country.
  • In Bharatiya Naya Sanhita, the number of sections in IPC has been reduced from 511 to 358.
  • Merging of overlapping parts and simplifying the language

The laws are meant to be in keeping with the Indian ethos, as opposed to colonial-era laws that prioritize justice and fairness over punishment alone, Union Home Minister Amit Shah said in the Lok Sabha when the laws were being debated.
The government has recently said that extensive preparations have been made to ensure smooth implementation of the new criminal laws across the country, including training programs and technological upgrades.

Criticism from the opposition

While the new laws have been hailed as a much-needed update to colonial-era legislation, the opposition has cited several problems.

  • The new laws increase the maximum period of police detention from 15 days to 60-90 days, increasing the risk of police abuses and coercion of evidence.
  • These laws give police officers broad discretion to choose whether to prosecute under the new laws or the existing UAPA, without clear guidelines.
  • The new laws introduce vaguely worded offenses related to “terrorism”, “organized crime”, and “acts threatening sovereignty”, which can be applied arbitrarily.
  • The definition of “terrorism” has been expanded beyond the existing UAPA to include acts that “disrupt public order” or “destabilize the country”, leaving wide scope for abuse. .
  • Enhanced police powers and vague crimes threaten basic rights such as freedom of expression and personal liberty.
  • Removing the provision of legal aid from the point of arrest is seen as particularly problematic for the protection of the rights of the accused.

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