CHENNAI: The Union government has asked Tamil Nadu to send its opinion on revoking 135 Central Acts passed during the colonial era, including the 1850 Judicial Officers Protection Act which protects the judge, magistrate, collector or any other person acting judicially from being sued in any civil court for any act done or ordered to be done by him in discharge of his duty.
According to official sources, the Centre has sought the state’s report over suitability and relevance of such Acts for carrying out amendments. This comes after the Lok Sabha passing the Repealing and Amending Bill in December 2022 to repeal 245 obsolete and archaic laws. It is learnt that there are more than 1,800 outdated and obsolete laws, which need to be dropped or amended.
Some of the Acts include the Prisons Act of 1894, one of the oldest dealing with laws enacted in relation to prisons in India. This Act was enacted on March 22, 1894, and enforced on July 1, 1894. This deals more with smooth functioning of prison rather than reformation and rehabilitation of prisoners.
One of the other laws is The Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897, which was first enacted to tackle bubonic plague in Mumbai. Similarly, Partition Act, which was enacted in 1893 on division of property and sale of property and distribution of proceeds. The Act, which is technical in character, has been in force for about 87 years and it is time deficiencies in its working are removed, said sources.
The other Act on which the Centre has sought the state’s response is Indian Wireless Telegraphy Act of 1933, which was meant to regulate the possession of wireless telegraphy apparatus. Another law is Societies Registration Act, 1860, passed in British India which allows registration of entities generally involved in the benefit of society -- education, health, employment etc.