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Report No. 40

14. Transfer of provisions to the two Codes recommended.- When the law relating to prisoners was revised and consolidated in 1900, there was perhaps some advantage in including in that Act the provisions contained in the Prisoners' Testimony Act, 1869. Officers in charge of prisons might have found it convenient to be provided with a single vade-mecum, but from the point of view of the civil and criminal courts and of the litigant public it would have been desirable to separate the provisions concerning civil courts from those concerning criminal courts and put them in appropriate niches in the two procedural Codes.

The contrary view has been expressed in one of the comments1 received by us. It is said that there are other instances of special provisions relating to civil and criminal courts being found in the same Act and special Acts (e.g., the Indian Soldiers Litigation Act, 1925) regulating civil procedure in a separate Act, which would make reference comment, there is an "advantage, not merely for prison officers but for the courts and the litigant public, in having the provisions relating to a special class of persons incorporated in a separate Act, which would make reference to them easier and which, not having to be read with other provisions of the vast Act like either of the two Codes, would be easier to follow and interpret".

We have already noticed that connected and slightly inconsistent provisions on the subject exist in the Code of Criminal Procedure. In substance, the provisions of the 1955-Act modify or supplement the ordinary rules regulating the procedure of civil and criminal courts whenever they have to issue process compelling the attendance of free individuals. We are of the view that the special provisions, which are doubtless required in the case of prisoners and detenus, could conveniently be incorporated in the two Codes.

1. Comment of the West Bengal Law Commission.



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