Defining Terror to Death for Lynching: Lok Sabha Nod for 3 Bills On New Criminal Laws

Syllabus : GS-II, Polity and Governance;

Subject: Polity and Governance;

Topic: Legal issues, Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation;

Issue: New Legal codes;

Context: Lok Sabha passed three key Bills – Bharatiya Nyaya (Second) Sanhita, 2023; the Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha (Second) Sanhita, 2023; and the Bharatiya Sakshya (Second) Bill, 2023 – to completely overhaul the country’s criminal laws..


  • Replace colonial laws: these will replace the Indian Penal Code (IPC), 1860; The Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (originally enacted in 1898); and the Indian Evidence Act, 1872.
  • Aim: indigenising laws originally enacted by the British.
  • Repealing colonial imprint: three specific provisions that have been symbols of colonial imprint in the IPC – sedition, criminalisation of homosexuality and adultery – have been repealed.

Change in Number of Sections:

  • CrPC had 484 sections, now the Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha (Second) Sanhita, 2023 will have 531 sections;
    • 177 sections have been changed; 9 new sections and 39 sub-sections have been included; 44 new explanations have been added;
    • timelines have been added in 35 sections; and 14 sections have been repealed.
  • IPC had 511 sections, and the Bharatiya Nyaya (Second) Sanhita will have 358 sections;
    • 31 new offences have been included in the purview of the new law; the imprisonment period has been increased for 41 offences;
    • Penalty has been hiked in 82 offences; compulsory minimum punishment has been introduced in 25 offences;
    • Community service has been added as a penalty for 6 offences; and 19 sections have been repealed.
  • Bharatiya Sakshya (Second) Bill, 2023 has 170 sections as compared to 167 sections in the Indian Evidence Act;
    • 24 sections have been changed; two new sections have been added; and six sections have been repealed

Key provisions and changes:

  • Mob lynching: BNS, 2023, makes mob lynching and hate crime a separate offence for the first time and prescribes a punishment that extends from life imprisonment to death.
  • Culpable homicide cases: the new version creates an exception for registered medical practitioners. The punishment prescribed is a jail term which may extend up to 2 years.
  • Fugitives: one could be declared a fugitive only in 19 crimes, now a provision has been made to declare a fugitive in 120 crimes,.
Scroll to Top