NEW DELHI: In another setback to the AAP government, the Union Law Ministry has rejected a Delhi government bill proposing amendment in the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) aimed at giving policing powers to the sub-divisional magistrate and district magistrates in the national capital.
Sources said that the law ministry in a communication to the Ministry of Home Affairs this past week said that the Arvind Kejriwal-led Delhi government cannot make amendments to CrPC without the prior approval of the Centre as there were “procedural lapses”.
The AAP government with the Lieutenant Governor’s approval had passed the Code of Criminal Procedure (Delhi Amendment) Bill, 2015 in the Assembly. Interestingly, the state’s law department had also objected to the move by the AAP government to bring in the bill in the Assembly but the Chief Minister ignored the recommendations.
Kejriwal wanted to bring in the bill following a police case into the alleged suicide of Gajender Singh, a farmer from Rajasthan. The 41-year-old had allegedly committed suicide during AAP’s rally at Jantar Mantar in the presence of the Chief Minister and other AAP leaders. The incident shook the entire nation.
Kejriwal had ordered a magisterial inquiry into the matter but police also registered cases against AAP leaders. The police had registered a case under Section 306 (abetment to suicide), 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of public functions) and 34 (common intention) of the IPC and transferred the case to the Crime Branch unit of Delhi Police.
Till now, a magisterial probe is ordered only in cases of custodial death, homicide, suicide or death of a woman and through the amendment to CrPC Section 176(1). The AAP government wanted to widen its scope to cover other cases.