Union Home Ministry on 10 December 2014 removed Section 309 of Indian Penal Code (IPC) decriminalizing attempt to suicide. The Ministry decided to remove Section 309 of IPC after 20th Law Commission recommended to decriminalize attempt to suicide.
As a result, attempt to suicide now will not be taken as a criminal offence as against the earlier position that a person charged with Section 309 of the IPC faced up to one year in prison and a fine.
20th Law Commission headed by Justice (retd) A P Shah in its 210th Report on Humanization and Decriminalization of Attempt to Suicide had recommended that Section 309 of IPC needed to be effaced from the statute book because the provision is inhuman, irrespective of whether it is constitutional or unconstitutional.
18 States and four Union Territories have backed the government's decision. However, states like Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and Delhi did advise due caution before scrapping of the provision.
Bihar government asked the Union Home Ministry that the section should not be omitted as there are suicide bombers who fail in their attempt to blow themselves up and other terrorists who consume cyanide pills with the intention to wipe out evidence.
Who: Union Home Ministry
When: 10 December 2014