In a significant move, Jammu and Kashmir’s different departments have set up committees to identify provisions in the laws which need to be removed or decriminalized.
As per the details, several departments have set up committees in the past three months to identify the provisions in the laws and rules which need to be removed or decriminalized. The departments have been directed to make recommendations regarding the laws/rules administered by them.
According to an order issued on January 30, 2023, the Department of Social Welfare has set-up a panel under the chairmanship of its special secretary to identify provisions in the Acts and Rules which need to be deleted.
As per the order, the heads of the departments/representatives shall within a period of one week identify the provisions that require to be removed/retained or decriminalized in the various acts/rules relating to the department based on their feedback from the field, which shall be placed before the committee for scrutiny and examination.
“The committee shall accordingly make appropriate recommendations to the department for the retention/ removal/ decriminalization of such provisions,” the order states.
On 8 December 2022, the Home department also set up a committee under the chairmanship of additional secretary (SR) for identifying provisions in the laws which were to be removed and decriminalized.
The seven- member committee constituted by the Home Department also comprised representatives of Director General of Police and Director General of Police,Prisons, J&K.
Before this, on November 25, the Roads & Buildings Department appointed Prakash Chander Tanoch, Development Commissioner Works to look into the matter and suggest changes, if any, regarding existing Acts/ Rules.
It is worthwhile to mention that the Government of India had also undertaken decriminalization of minor technical and procedural offences under existing Acts/Rules to reduce the fear of imprisonment among businesses/citizens. (KNO)