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Union Home Minister Amit Shah presented the Bharatiya Sanhita Suraksha Bill, 2023 in Lok Sabha

Union Home Minister Amit Shah presented the Bharatiya Sanhita Suraksha Bill, 2023 in the Lok Sabha. This bill aims to replace three antiquated "19th Century Laws," namely the Indian Penal Code, Code of Criminal Procedure, and Indian Evidence Act. Additionally, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman introduced amendments to the Goods and Services Tax (GST) during the parliamentary session.

By Rekha Joshi 
Updated Date

On Friday, Union Home Minister Amit Shah made a significant move by introducing the Bharatiya Sanhita Suraksha Bill, 2023, in the esteemed Lok Sabha. This legislative proposal seeks to replace three antiquated “19th Century Laws” that have been shaping the legal landscape of the nation for over a century. These laws in question are the Indian Penal Code, the Code of Criminal Procedure, and the Indian Evidence Act.

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In a parallel development, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman brought to the forefront the Integrated Goods and Service Tax (Amendment) Bill and the Central Goods and Services Tax (Amendment) Bill within the Lower House. Notably, these bills introduce amendments to the Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime, a significant economic measure. A particular point of discussion and contention within these amendments is the proposition to institute a uniform and consistent 28 percent tax rate. This rate is intended to be applied to diverse activities such as online gaming, casinos, and horse racing.

As he addressed the esteemed Lower House, Amit Shah took the opportunity to underscore the historical context underlying this legislative endeavor. He emphasized that from the year 1860 up until the present year of 2023, the nation’s criminal justice system has been operating under the laws crafted and established by the British colonial rulers. Importantly, Shah highlighted that the impending substitution of these three entrenched laws marks a momentous and transformative shift within the contours of our country’s criminal justice system.

To ensure the robustness and effectiveness of this proposed legislation, Shah offered insights into the meticulous procedure that will follow. He indicated that the introduced bill will undergo a comprehensive and thorough review process under the purview of a Parliamentary Standing Committee. This commitment to scrutiny signifies a commitment to democratic oversight and due diligence in shaping the legal framework of the country.

Shah further elaborated on the extensive development journey of this bill. He revealed that this legislative effort has spanned an impressive four-year period. During this time, careful attention was dedicated to the integration of input and perspectives from a diverse range of stakeholders. This inclusive approach underscores the commitment to crafting a law that resonates with and addresses the concerns of the various segments of society.

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Shah stated that “We have taken all suggestions into thorough consideration. Our utmost priority is to guarantee the safety of our citizens and accelerate the administration of justice,” he affirmed.

In conclusion, the introduction of the Bharatiya Sanhita Suraksha Bill, 2023, along with the amendments to the GST framework, represents a dynamic and forward-looking step in the legislative landscape of India. These endeavors underline a commitment to modernization, inclusivity, and the welfare of the citizens, all while acknowledging the historical context that has shaped the legal framework of the nation.

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