Kathmandu, April 12
The penal code bill contains strict provisions against absconders.
The bill which was recently finalised by the Legislation Committee of the House, has proposed freezing the absconder’s movable assets, including bank balance, and attaching land and house property as well as share transactions.
Similarly the bill also proposes to seize the passport and the citizenship of the accused. The accused will not be able to purchase land property. “Even if the accused hides abroad, the new bill has proposed to serve summons where he/she is hiding and the court can deliver verdicts in absentia if the absconder does not present himself or herself before the court within the stipulated date, said legislation committee member Rewati Raman Bhandari. He also said that the new provision was kept so that the culprit does not go unpunished just because the defendant or the absconder hides in a foreign land.
Another member of the committee Laxman Lal Karna said the Tarai had been victimised as the accused were hiding in India. “When a criminal case is filed against people, people from the entire village flee to India,” he added.
The penal code bill prohibits the arrest of any citizen without the court’s consent. There is however, an exception to this rule.
According to Bhandari, the bill proposes that law enforcement agents can arrest somebody and seek the court’s permission after the arrest if they believe that the accused could otherwise abscond.
The bill also proposes to penalise police personal who register the First Information Report from the victims or knowingly leave out significant evidence, place and things during investigation.
The bill also proposes to take FIR through email and other electronic media. “We wanted to have a provision for anticipatory bail, but the police leadership urged us not to do so because the police system is not ready for that” said Karna.
The bill also proposes to implement the court’s order within three to seven days. The bill also proposes departmental action or fine against those officials who delay or show reluctance to implement the court’s verdict or order. The bill also includes a provision of lottery system to finales ownership of any ancestral property which is claimed by two or more offsprings. The bill also proposes to take action against surveyors or any other government employees who distort the measurement of any land or property
The bill has proposed to make government attorneys more powerful than the previous system by allowing them to intervene during the investigation period. “Government attorneys can alert the investigating officer if he/she feels that the investigating officer has left out any evidence or that the investigation is not proceeding in the right direction,” said Bhandari.
A version of this article appears in print on April 13, 2017 of The Himalayan Times.