Other States

U.P. Law Commission pushes for life term in lynching cases

Taking cognisance of incidents of mob lynching, including those by cow vigilantes, the Uttar Pradesh Law Commission has submitted a draft Bill recommending up to life imprisonment for the crime.

Commission chairman Justice (retired) A.N. Mittal submitted a report on mob lynching, along with the draft Bill, to Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Wednesday.

The 128-page report cited various cases of lynching in the State and recommended immediate enactment of a law as per recommendations made by the Supreme Court in 2018. The commission said the existing laws to combat lynchings were not sufficient.

It recommended a punishment ranging from seven years to life imprisonment for the offence.

Suggesting that such a law may be called the Uttar Pradesh Combating of Mob Lynching Act, the commission specified the responsibilities of police officers and District Magistrates and spelt out the punishment for failing in their duty.

The panel said the law should also provide for compensation to the family of the victim for grievous injury or loss of life and property.

There should also be provisions for the rehabilitation of the victims and their families, it said.

Suo motu study

According to data available from 2012 to 2019, 50 incidents of mob violence have taken place in the State. Eleven of the 50 victims have died in the attacks. Twenty-five of these were cases of major assault, including those by cow vigilantes.

“In the backdrop of this situation, the commission took up the study suo motu and accordingly recommended the State government the need for having a comprehensive law to combat lynching,” said Law Commission secretary Sapna Tripathi.

The report said only Manipur has made a special law against lynchings and, as per media reports, the Madhya Pradesh government is soon going to enact one.

It referred to various cases of lynching and mob violence in the State, including the 2015 killing of Mohammed Akhlaq in Dadri on suspicion of beef consumption.

It also mentioned the killing of Inspector Subodh Singh on December 3, 2018, in a clash between police and Hindutva groups in Bulandshahr after cattle carcasses were found in a field.

“Incidents of mob violence have taken place in Farrukhabad, Unnao, Kanpur, Hapur and Muzaffarnagar districts. Police are also becoming victims as people have started thinking of them as their enemy,” Justice Mittal said in the report.

The panel studied laws of different countries and States, and decisions of the Supreme Court while preparing the draft Bill.

It suggested punishment for conspiracy, aid or abetment in such cases, as well as for obstructing the legal process.

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Printable version | Nov 22, 2021 7:41:17 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/up-law-commission-pushes-for-life-term-in-lynching-cases/article28392866.ece

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