Gujarat Assembly Re-introduces, Passes GUJCOC Bill

The Modi government has re-introduced the Gujarat Control of Organised Crime (GUJCOC) Bill, dismissing recommendations made by President Pratibha Patil to revise it.

The bill was unanimously passed by the ruling party members even as the members of opposition has been boycotting the proceedings for their demand for a debate on recent hooch tragedy has not been entertained by Speaker Ashok Bhatt.

“The suggestion made by the President should not be approved by the assembly. If we include President’s suggestion, GUJCOC Bill will become just another Indian Penal Code which is no good for Gujarat, which shares its land and sea borders with neighbouring country Pakistan,” minister of state for home Amit Shah said while re-introducing the GUJCOC Bill.

“When we first proposed GUJCOC, a law to fight terrorism, POTA was in force, so we had prepared a law to fight orgnanised crime. But now when the POTA has been repealed we do not have specific law to fight terrorism. So, we have introduced the word ‘terrorist’ and defined terrorists’ activity in the Bill,” Shah added.

It may be mentioned that on advice of the Union Cabinet, the President, in June, had returned the GUJCOC passed by state assembly in 2004. While returning it, the President had suggested three modifications in it, which the state government has dismissed.

The firm modification recommended was deletion of Clause 16 of the bill which says a confession made by a person before a police officer shall be admissible in the trial.

The other two changes were in Clause 20(2)(B) and Clause 20 (4). The President had told the state government to bring the provision in line with the provision to Section 43D (2) and Section 43 D (5) of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Amendment Act, 2008.

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