More than 45,000 officers got training to follow the new criminal law, Delhi Police has completed preparations

After the new criminal law came into effect on Monday, Delhi Police Special CP (Training) Chhaya Sharma said that more than 45,000 officers in the force have been trained for the change. The Special CP said that special booklets have been prepared to ease the implementation process.

Three new criminal laws, namely the Indian Justice Code, the Indian Civil Defence Code, and the Indian Evidence Code, replaced the Indian Penal Code (IPC), 1860; the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC), 1973; and the Indian Evidence Act, 1872, coming into effect from Monday.

The Special CP said, “FIRs will be registered under these sections from today. Our training for this began on February 5. We prepared booklets which helped us train our officers easily so that they can be prepared for the upcoming changes.” He added, “Divided into four parts, the pocket booklet includes changes from IPC to BNS, new sections added in BNS, categories that now come under seven years of punishment and a table with sections required for everyday policing.”

CP Sharma informed that the first round of training was given to IOs in all police stations as well as to prospective IOs who may be posted in major police stations in future. “Now, at least 45,000 officers in the Delhi Police are trained and prepared for the changes introduced by the new criminal laws. We have also set up a team to assist officers with any queries about the implementation of these laws. This team acts as an FAQ resource, providing help and clarifications as required during the implementation process,” CP Sharma said.

He also pointed out that the best part of the new system is that it focuses on ‘justice’ rather than ‘punishment’ with a victim-centric approach. “For the first time, a lot of emphasis has been laid on digital evidence. Now, evidence will be recorded digitally. The role of forensic experts has been enhanced,” he said. He further said that old cases registered under IPC, CrPC and Indian Evidence Act will be tried under the same old laws till final disposal. He said, “The law does not work on a retrospective basis. So, the law is that old cases (recorded earlier) will be dealt with under IPC and CrPC. But from today, July 1, when new cases are registered, sections of BNS (Indian Justice Code) will apply. Similarly, the process of investigation starting today will follow the Indian Civil Security Code (BNSS) and not CrPC. Old cases will be dealt with under the old sections – CrPC and IPC. New cases will be dealt with under sections of Indian Justice Code (BNS) and Indian Civil Security Code (BNSS).”

The first FIR under the Indian Penal Code, 2023 was registered at the Kamala Market police station in the national capital on Monday. A street vendor has been booked under Section 285 of the Indian Penal Code for creating obstruction and selling on the footbridge of New Delhi Railway Station. The three new laws that came into force from today got the approval of Parliament on December 21, 2023. President Draupadi Murmu gave her assent on December 25, 2023 and it was published in the official gazette on the same day.

The Indian Judicial Code will have 358 sections (instead of 511 sections in the IPC). A total of 20 new offences have been added in the bill, and the punishment for 33 of them has been increased to imprisonment. The amount of fine has been increased in 83 offences, and mandatory minimum sentence has been introduced in 23 offences. Community service punishment has been introduced for six offences, and 19 sections have been repealed or deleted from the bill.

The Indian Civil Defence Code will have 531 sections (in place of 484 sections of CrPC). A total of 177 provisions have been replaced in the bill, and nine new sections as well as 39 new sub-sections have been added. 44 new provisions and clarifications have been added to the draft Act. Timelines have been added to 35 sections, and audio-video provisions have been added at 35 places. A total of 14 sections have been repealed and deleted in the Code. The Indian Civil Defence Act will have 170 provisions (in place of the original 167 provisions), and a total of 24 provisions have been replaced. Two new provisions and six sub-provisions have been added, and six provisions in the Act have been repealed or deleted. The full implementation of the new criminal laws will ensure an end to the ‘tarikh pe tarikh’ era, and justice will be delivered in three years, as earlier told by Union Home Minister Amit Shah in Parliament.

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