New Delhi: Terming the practice of khap
panchayats of handing down punishment to couples who go for
`sagotra` or inter-caste marriage as "flagrant violation" of
law, the Law Commission on Friday came up with a draft legislation
which seeks to make such acts as non-bailable offences.
The panel also floated a consultation paper on khap
panchayats and honour killings seeking public opinion on it.
The draft Prohibition of unlawful assembly (interference
with the freedom of matrimonial alliances) Bill, 2011 says
that offences under the Act will be cognisable, non-bailable
The draft bill proposes that offences under the Act will
be tried by special courts to be headed by a Sessions Judge or
an Additional Session Judge.
The special courts, to be set up by states in
consultation with the High Courts, will have the power of a
Referring to suggestion to amend the IPC to introduce a
provision to bring honour killings within the ambit of Section
300 (murder) of the Indian Penal Code, the Commission said
there was no such need.
"The Commission is prima facie of the view that there is
no need for introducing a provision in Section 300 IPC in
order to bring the so-called ‘honour killings’ within the
ambit of this provision.
The existing provisions in IPC are
adequate enough to take care of the situations leading to
overt acts of killing...," the consultation paper said.
Many young couples in the northern states have fallen
victim to honour killings ordered by khap panchayats or
self-styled caste councils.
The consultation paper comes nearly two years after the
government had proposed to make honour killing a separate
A Group of Ministers (GoM) under Finance Minister Pranab
Mukherjee is also looking into the issue.