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ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of Law and Justice Wednesday informed a parliamentary body that it will table an amendment bill regarding amendment to the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) 1898 within two or three weeks in the parliament.

Secretary Ministry of Law and Justice Raja Naeem Akbar told sub-committee on National Assembly Standing Committee on Law and Justice, which met under convener ship of MNA Malik Muhammad Ehsanullah Tiwana that Law Ministry has started drafting of CrPC amendment bill, which will be completed within two to three weeks and then it will be laid before the parliament.

He told the committee that the criminal law amendment was the need of the hour.

During the previous regime of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) his ministry had also prepared criminal law amendment and forwarded it to the Ministry of Interior but it was not tabled in the parliament after dissolution of the assembly.

The present government has gone a step forward and formed two different committees for civil law and criminal law reforms, he said.

The secretary said that the Law Ministry first take up the matter related to criminal law reforms and held meeting with representatives of all the provincial governments, Inspectors General of Police (IGPs), and identified different areas for amendments including registration of first information report, use of modern technology during investigation, and use of technology during trial.

He said that amendment have been proposed in article 164 of Qanoon-e-Shahdat in order to make admissible CCTV footage, videos, and picture.

Punishment of police or investigation officer for wrong or faulty investigation have also been proposed, he said, adding that amendments have also been proposed to end procedural delay and to bound announcement of judgment within a specific time.

Saqib Sultan, deputy inspector general (DIG) said that the National Police Bureau (NPB) had prepared a “Handbook of Criminal Investigation in Pakistan” 2021 through consolidated efforts of experts from all provincial police organisations, Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), National Counter Terrorism Authority (NACTA), National Accountability Bureau (NAB), Advocate General Islamabad, Anti-Narcotics Force (ANF), and prominent legal experts.

He said that the handbook had been approved by all relevant stockholders; therefore, the Law Ministry needed to make it a part of proposed police reforms.

The committee directed the Law Ministry to table the proposed CrPC amendment bill before the committee to hold further discussion over it before laying it in the parliament.

MNA Nafisa Shah, Sunila Ruth, and Mohsin Shah Nawaz Ranjha and senior officials of the Ministry of Law and Justice also attended the meeting.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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