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Report No. 248

11. Howrah Offences Act, Act 21 of 1857

Category: Criminal Justice

Recommendation: Repeal

This Act was enacted to prescribe penalties for various offences committed within the limits of Howrah, a suburb of Calcutta where the iconic Howrah Station is located. However, the Act lays down relatively insignificant sentences and fines while the Indian Penal Code, 1860 and other criminal laws have stricter penalties for the same offences.

This Act has not been used in the recent past, with the last recorded case being in 1956. While this Act is redundant, concerns remain about its use as a legal escape route to avoid more stringent penalties under the IPC (or some other law). This Act was recommended for repeal by the PC Jain Commission in its Appendix A-5.


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