Incorrect Incorporation Of Criminal Law Amendment In Law Journal; Jammu & Kashmir HC Pulls Up Editor, State [Read Judgment]

Incorrect Incorporation Of Criminal Law Amendment In Law Journal; Jammu & Kashmir HC Pulls Up Editor, State [Read Judgment]

‘The editor has, in the most inconsiderate, unconscious and imprudent manner published the said amendment in the Journal.’

The Jammu and Kashmir High Court recently pulled up a law publisher for incorporating misleading and incorrect provision regarding an amendment of Section 167 of Jammu and Kashmir Code of Criminal Procedure.

In fact, the Criminal Laws Amendment Act of 2013 (Act XI of 2014) had extended the period of remand to 30 days instead of the 15 days as it existed earlier and it was only applicable to the offences under Sections 326 A, 326B, 376, 376A, 376C, 376D and 376E.  The amendment in the Gupta’s J&K Laws, 2015 edition, has been published in such a manner as if it is applicable to all the offences.

Justice M.K. Hanjura, while considering a bail application in an NDPS case, took note of the provision as incorporated in the volume, the bench said: “There is no Criminal Laws Amendment Act of 2014 (Act XI of 2014) dated 22nd of March, 2014. It is in essence the Criminal Laws Amendment Act of 2013 (Act XI of 2014) dated 22nd of March, 2014. The said amendment is applicable to the offences under Sections326 A, 326B, 376, 376A, 376C, 376D and 376E only where the period of remand has been extended to 30 days instead of the 15 days as it existed earlier. The total period of remand has been extended upto 90 days instead of 60 days as endowed earlier. The amendment in the Gupta’s J&K Laws, 2015 edition, has been published in such a manner as if it is applicable to all the offences. It has been published in an irresponsible, irrational and casual manner without knowing its consequences.”

The bench said Volume 4 of Gupta’s J&K Laws 2015 edition is shelved in the library of almost every court in the district judiciary as also the high court. It said even the high court also had got swayed by the publication and passed the orders based on the said amendment in two bail applications. “The editor has, in the most inconsiderate, unconscious and imprudent manner published the said amendment in the Journal,” it said.

The bench then directed the Chief Secretary of the state to examine whether any authority has been bestowed unto the editor of Gupta’s J&K Laws 2015, to publish the J&K laws and whether he has been authorized to publish the notifications issued by the government from time to time.

“In the previous past, the publication of the Jammu and Kashmir Laws was exclusively carried into effect by the Government. It is not known whether the publisher has been entrusted with any power or authority by the Law Department of the Jammu and Kashmir Government to publish the Jammu and Kashmir Laws and the notifications issued by the Government of Jammu and Kashmir from time to time,” the bench said.

Read the Judgment Here