Jharkhand’s Proposed Law against Mob Lynching Has Provision for Life Imprisonment, Property Attachment

A bill to this effect will be introduced in the winter session of the state assembly which begins on December

NEW DELHI – The JMM-led state government of Jharkhand is going to introduce a bill against mob violence in the winter session of the state assembly which proposes punishment of life imprisonment to the guilty if the victim dies.

The draft legislation named as the Prevention of Mob Violence and Mob Lynching Bill, 2021 will be introduced in the assembly when the winter session will begin on December 16.

“…where the act leads to the death of the victim, shall be punished with rigorous imprisonment for life and with fine which shall not be less than Rs 25 lakh, and the movable and immovable properties shall be attached… For people found guilty of conspiracy or abetment, the draft say that the punishment will be same as ‘lynching’,” the draft was quoted by Indian Express as saying.

Apart from the life imprisonment and property attachment of the convicts, the draft proposes the registration of FIR for disseminating explosive and irresponsible content, providing information about the progress of the case to the victim’s family, punishment for creating a hostile environment for victims or witnesses and free medical treatment to the victim.

The state has witnessed many lynching incidents in recent years. Some of the incidents like lynching of Alimuddin Ansari and Tabrez Ansari have drawn national outrage in the last few years. Tabrez, 24, was beaten to death after he was tied to a pole on the suspicion of theft at Dhatkidih village in Seraikela Kharsawan district. He was also forced to chant ‘Jai Shri Ram’ by the mob.

Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren had denounced the incidents of mob lynching during the election campaign for 2019 assembly polls. Talking about the bill, JMM central general secretary Supriyo Bhattacharya said his party had promised law against the mob lynching in the state and now, his government wants to fulfil that promise.

The coalition government of Jharkhand Mukti Morcha, Congress and Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) has a majority in the assembly. Hence, Bhattacharya is hopeful of the bill being passed in the assembly. If done, Jharkhand will join West Bengal and Rajasthan for having a law against the mob lynching.

Jharkhand’s proposed law fixes the accountability of preventing the lynching on the local police station.

“Unlike other states, the accountability of preventing lynching will be fixed right at the local police station level. The officer-in-charge of a local police station will be responsible for preventing the dissemination of objectionable material, hate speeches and prevention of such incidents,” a senior police officer has been quoted by Times of India as saying.

The draft proposed a list of duties for the police to take reasonable steps to prevent the lynching incident. After registering FIR in the lynching incident, the police have to inform the victims about the progress of the investigation. The name of the accused has to be provided within 30 days of registering the FIR.

The draft also said: “Those who are proven to be a part of a lynching conspiracy, aiding or attempting to lynch will also be punished in the same manner like he or she has committed a lynching”.


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