Bills and Amendements Current Affairs - 2019

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Parliament passes Repealing and Amending Bill, 2019

Parliament has passed Repealing and Amending Bill, 2019 that seeks to repeal certain enactments and to amend certain other enactments. The bill provides for repealing 58 old and obsolete laws which have no relevance at present and makes minor amendments to two other laws. It was introduced in Lok Sabha on 25 July 2019 by Union Minister of Law and Justice Ravi Shankar Prasad.

Repealing and Amending Bill, 2019

Repealing certain laws in whole: Bill repeals 68 laws that have been listed in 1st Schedule of Bill.

These include: (1) Beedi Workers Welfare Fund Act, 1976 (2) Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Act, 2001.

Amendment of certain laws: Bill makes minor amendments to two Acts which relate to substitution of certain words. These two Acts are: (1) Income Tax Act (IT), 1961 and (2) India Institutes of Management (IIM) Act, 2017.

NOTE: Since NDA government came to power for 1st term in 2014, it started identifying obsolete laws and has so far repealed 1,428 old and archaic central Acts and about 75 laws which Centre drafted for states in view of President rule have also been repealed till date. This periodic review of old laws is part of governance.

Haryana passes bill for death penalty for child rapists

The Haryana Assembly unanimously passed Criminal Law (Haryana Amendment) Bill, 2018 providing for death penalty for convicts found guilty of raping girls aged 12 years or less. With this, Haryana became third state, after Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan to have provision of capital punishment for such sexual offenders.

Key Features of Bill

The Bill amends Indian Penal Code (IPC) 1860, the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) 1973 and Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, 2012.

It inserts section 376-AA in IPC.  It provides punishment of death or rigorous imprisonment of not less than 14 years in case of rape of girl up to 12 years of age. This punishment may extend to imprisonment for life that is for remainder period of person’s natural life.

It also inserts section 376-D in IPC. Under it, if girl upto 12 years of age is raped by one or more persons constituting group, each of those persons shall be deemed to have committed offence of rape and will be punished with death or rigorous imprisonment for term which will not be less than 20 years, but which may extend to life along with fine.

It also makes existing criminal laws related to other sexual offences more stringent. The punishment under Section 354 of IPC (Assault or criminal force against woman with intent to outrage her modesty) will not be less than 2 years (earlier not less than 1 year) but may extend up to 7 years (earlier up to 5 years).