Criminal Procedure Identification Bill is the birth of another draconian law: Popular Front

In a statement, Popular Front of India Chairman O M A Salam has expressed deep resentment over the passage of the Criminal Procedure (Identification) Bill, 2022. 

The bill passed through voice votes in Parliament is a matter of serious concern. Allowing police and prison authorities to collect, store and analyse physical and biological samples including retina and iris scans of convicted, arrested, and detained persons will open the door for all kinds of misuse. It’s loosely worded and provides law enforcement agents with the authority to interpret the law as they see fit. The bill would turn into another draconian law of the 21st century. The passage of the bill in the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha without addressing the valid concerns raised by the opposition shows the autocratic nature of the BJP government. 

Providing powers to National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) to collect and store data is a violation of the separation of powers provided under the constitution. The Bill hampers the constitutional provisions, thereby turning a democratic country into a surveillance state. The ruling parties could use this bill as an opportunity to clamp down dissent in a legitimate manner. 

Popular Front demands Judicial intervention as the bill is in direct contravention of the Supreme Court judgments. The bill has not passed the test of the Constitution as interpreted by the Supreme Court. Citizens should come forward in protest against this hasty passage of an unconstitutional and inhumane bill. 

Director, Media & PR,

Popular Front Headquarters,

New Delhi.