At least three members of a parliamentary committee that is set to discuss key criminal law bills have protested the “short notice” at which the panel is meeting, PTI reported.

The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Home Affairs is slated to hold meetings between August 24 and August 26 to discuss the Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita Bill, 2023, Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha Sanhita Bill, 2023 and Bharatiya Sakhshya Bill, 2023. The three bills propose to replace the Indian Penal Code of 1860, the Code of Criminal Procedure of 1973 and the Indian Evidence Act of 1872.

Union Home Secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla will brief the members of the panel on the various facets of the bills.

Trinamool Congress’ Derek O’Brien and Kakoli Ghosh Dastidar and Congress MP Digvijay Singh have written to the committee’s chairperson and Bharatiya Janata Party legislator Brij Lal demanding that the dates be revised.

O’Brien said in his letter that as the Monsoon Session of Parliament has just ended, the MPs from the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha have made several commitments in their constituencies, The Hindu reported.

“This is too short a notice [a few days only] for discussion of a bill with implications of this magnitude,” the Trinamool Congress MP said. “Please revise the dates and schedule it in the month of September, considering that many members of the committee are present for these meetings.”

The notice about the meetings was issued on August 18, according to The Hindu.

As per the original schedule, the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Home Affairs was scheduled to meet on August 24 in order to adopt a draft report on “Prison-Condition Infrastructure and Reforms”, a subject that the panel had been discussing for a long time.

The Indian Penal Code, the principal criminal code of India, defines various crimes and specifies punishments for them. The Code of Criminal Procedure is a procedural law that specifies the way in which crimes should be investigated, accused persons should be arrested and courts should deal with cases.

The Indian Evidence Act contains a set of rules that deal with the admissibility of evidence in courts.

Union Home Minister Amit Shah had introduced the bills on August 11, the last day of the Monsoon Session. Speaker Om Birla had then referred all the bills to the parliamentary standing committee.

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