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Report No. 43

6.3. Provisions relating to armed forces-importance of.-

It is not a mere coincidence that in the Indian Penal Code, the Chapter dealing with offences relating to armed forces appears immediately after the Chapter relating to offences against the State. The importance of armed forces as the chief instrument for maintaining national security must have been the principal reason. The Chapter attempts to provide, in a manner more consistent with the general character of the Code, for the punishment of civilians who abet military crimes.

The inter-relationship of the offences in Chapter 7 of the Code with the offences in the laws relating to armed forces has been explained briefly in our Report on the Penal Code.1 The necessity for these provisions is obvious. The military law does not apply to civilians, as so they cannot be punished as abettors under that law. And the general provisions of the Penal Code as to abetment would also not apply, because the principal offences of mutiny, desertion, insubordination and the like, are outside the Code.

1. 42nd Report, paras. 7.1 and 7.2.

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