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Report No. 156

Problem of Hijacking of Aircraft or Vehicles: Sum Up

10.14. The existing general provisions in the I.P.C. cover moving of any property unlawfully amounting to theft and when a force is used it may become robbery and if committed by five persons or more it amounts to dacoity. But in view of new trends of crime like hijacking of aircraft or vehicles, in 1978 Bill certain provisions are sought to be included and hijacking of aircraft or vehicles are being made specific offences by virtue of section 362A under clause 149.

Incidentally, some changes are suggested in the provisions relating to private defence and are sought to be made in seditions 103, 105 by adding hijacking of aircraft or sabotage. The other existing provisions relating to mischief also cover some of the alleged offences committed in respect of the aircraft or vehicles. In view of the changes to be brought about relating the offence of hijacking in the Bill, they have explained under the proposed section 437 the meaning of sabotage which is sought to be introduced or inserted under clause 180.

Likewise, some changes are suggested in the Bill in the proposed new section 432 regarding mischief committed in respect of the air services like beacon, lights, etc. at the airport. The I.P.C. (Amendment) Bill was prepared in 1978, thereafter the Anti-hijacking Act of 1982, subsequently amended in 1994. Also the Suppression of Unlawful Acts against Safety of Civil Aviation Act, 1982 was enacted which was also amended in 1994. An examination of the provisions of these Acts it is crystal clear that the changes what are sought to be brought about in this regard under clause 179 are being taken care of in these special enactments both in respect of hijacking as well as the mischief to the service as such.

Therefore, there is no necessity now to have section 362A as proposed in the I.P.C. (Amendment) Bill, 1978 in respect of hijacking of aircraft. Consequently, the changes proposed under clauses 35 and 37 of the I.P.C. (Amendment) Bill, 1978 for the amendments in sections 103 and 105 of the I.P.C. which deal with the mischief to property including hijacking of aircraft, would not be necessary. Needless to mention that the mischief to the air service etc. has been made a crime and punishable under the special enactments mentioned above. Hence, no amendment is also required in section 432 of the I.P.C. as proposed in the I.P.C. (Amendment) Bill, 1978.

10.15. In the light of above discussion, it is recommended that section 362A is not required to be inserted in the I.P.C.. Similarly there is no need to amend sections 103, 105, 432 of the I.P.C. for covering the crime of air hijacking and mischief to air service etc.

10.16. But this crime is tremendously increasing throughout the world. The legislation of a country fails when the jurisdiction for the crime of air hijacking or criminal arises in two or more countries. It is the need of the hour that to prevent this crime international co-operation is required. Therefore, it is very necessary to have a look for international trends towards the problem specially where the crime is a continuing crime and have jurisdiction of two or more countries. In brief, discussion pertaining to international trends and convention pertaining air hijacking shall be useful not only for our recommendations but also for academic value.

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