New Delhi | Opposition MPs in the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Home Affairs have questioned the "haste" in adopting the draft reports on the three bills to replace the IPC, CrPC and the Evidence Act, as a meeting has been called later this week for the purpose.
The committee, which is examining the Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita, Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha Sanhita and the Bharatiya Sakshya Bills, has informed its members through a notice that the draft reports will be adopted on October 27.
According to sources, at least two opposition MPs have written to the panel's chairperson raising concerns about the process of scrutiny of the bills and have also urged him to postpone the meeting.
Questioning the "haste", both the MPs have said that they did not get enough time to go through the three reports which were sent to them only on the late evening of October 21.
Members of the panel who belong to parties of the opposition INDIA bloc are set to submit dissent notes against adopting the reports. In the 30-member panel, the BJP has 16 members.
Opposition MPs, who have in the past raised questions over the experts being called for examination, have questioned the short notice for calling the meeting even as a number of experts suggested by them are yet to be called.
One of the opposition MPs, in his letter to the panel chairperson, pointed at an "alarming lack" of consultation with stakeholders and shared a list of experts that had been suggested by them for examination.
Former Chief Justice of India U U Lalit, retired Supreme Court judge Justice Madan B Lokur, eminent jurist Fali Nariman, Senior Advocate Rebecca John and Advocate Menaka Guruswamy are among the names included in the list.
Requesting postponement of the panel's meeting, another opposition MP pointed out that the draft report was sent in the middle of festivals even though the next Parliament session is at least four weeks away.
TMC MPs in the panel have, meanwhile, raised concern over the meeting being called a day before Lakshmi Puja which is celebrated in Bengal a few days after Durga Puja.
"It shows that the BJP does not understand anything about the culture of Bengal," said a TMC MP, who is a part of the parliamentary panel.
Raising concern about the bills, an opposition MP alleged that these proposed laws which are meant to replace the colonial-era procedural laws are "even more colonial".
The 30-member Parliamentary Standing Committee on Home Affairs has 16 BJP MPs including the chairperson, four of the Congress, two each of DMK, TMC, JD(U) and BJD, and one of the Shiv Sena.
It was given three months to examine the three bills and submit its report after Home Minister Amit Shah had requested the Lok Sabha chair to refer the bills to the panel for threadbare examination. In the 11 meetings held so far, the panel took the views of various experts, including the Law Commission.
The IPC and the Evidence Act are colonial-era procedural laws that form the backbone of Indian criminal jurisprudence along with CrPC.