Lok Sabha passed the Repealing and Amending Bill, 2014 with a voice vote on 18 March 2015. The bill seeks to repeal 35 archaic laws either partially or entirely as they have ceased to be in force or have become obsolete.
Out of the 35 acts, three acts will be repealed entirely. These include The Indian Fisheries Act, 1897, The Foreign Jurisdiction Act, 1947 and The Sugar Undertakings (Taking over of Management) Act, 1978.
The remaining 32 Acts that are being repealed are amendments to principal Acts. These include amendments to the Representation of the People Act, 1951, Hindu Marriage Act, 1955, Anand Marriage Act, 1909 the Indian Evidence Act, 1872 among others.
Earlier on 8 December 2014, the Lok Sabha passed the Repealing and Amending (Second) Bill, 2014 which sought to repeal 90 laws and pass amendments to two laws. Out of 90 laws, 88 laws will be repealed completely. The Bill is lying with Rajya Sabha.
The Union government had initially introduced the bill on 11 August 2014 in Lok Sabha and sought to repeal 36 archaic laws. However, it was not passed in the Parliament then and was sent to Parliamentary Standing Committee on Personnel, Public Grievances, Law and Justice under the Chairmanship of Dr. E.M. Sudarsana Natchiappan on 22 September 2014.
The Standing Committee recommended withdrawing Employment of Manual Scavenging and Construction of Dry Latrines (Prohibition) Act, 1993 from the list of 36 laws that were proposed to be repealed.
According to Committee, the Manual Scavenging Act cannot be repealed as several states were yet to pass resolutions to implement the Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and Their Rehabilitation Act, 2013 passed on the same subject.
The passage of The Repealing and Amending Bill, 2014 in the Lok Sabha is in tune with the Union government’s objective of repealing the obsolete laws as they have outlived their utility.
Around 1741 laws in the country have become redundant but still they are in existence. In this regard the BJP-led NDA government has identified 741 Appropriation Acts that needs to be repealed. These Acts pertain to the domain of Union Finance Ministry and Railway Ministry.
While the Railway Ministry has given a go-ahead to the Law Ministry to repeal its set of old Appropriation Acts, the Finance Ministry is in the process of taking a call on the issue.
According to 20th Law Commission, these Appropriation Acts needs to be repealed. This is because Appropriation Acts are intended to operate for a limited period of time, that is, authorising expenditures for the duration of one financial year. After this they do not have any meaning yet they technically remain in statute books.
Where: Lok Sabha
When: 18 March 2015