Won’t comment on new criminal laws, says CJI Chandrachud

Amid a heated debate over the three new criminal laws, Chief Justice of India (CJI) D Y Chandrachud on Tuesday, 2 July refused to comment on them, saying the issues arising from these statutes were pending before the Supreme Court.

The new laws — Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita (BNS), Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha Sanhita (BNSS) and the Bharatiya Sakshya Adhiniyam (BSA) — came into effect across the country from July 1 and replaced the Indian Penal Code, the Code of Criminal Procedure and the Indian Evidence Act, respectively.

Recently, a PIL was filed in the top court seeking a stay on the new criminal laws. It also challenged the constitutional validity of certain provisions in these laws.

“These are issues which are sub-judice before the Supreme Court, maybe possibly the other high courts. Therefore, I should not be speaking on anything which is likely to come up before the court,” the CJI said while speaking to the media after an event to mark the foundation stone-laying ceremony at Karkardooma, Shastri Park and Rohini for new trial court buildings in the capital.

In his speech at the event, Chandrachud asserted that the courts only subserve the Constitution and are in service of no one but the litigants.

“Our courts are not merely sights of sovereign power but are also essential public service providers,” he said.

Leave a Comment