Kerala Advocate Challenges Hindi Names of New Criminal Laws

Case Title:- P. V. Jeevesh v Union of India and Others

P.V. Jeevesh has filed a Public Interest Litigation in the Kerala High Court, challenging the Hindi and Sanskrit names of three new criminal laws: Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha Sanhita, Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita, and Bharatiya Sakshya Adhiniyam, set to replace the Code of Criminal Procedure, Indian Penal Code, and Indian Evidence Act from July 1, 2024.

Jeevesh argues that the Hindi and Sanskrit titles create confusion and ambiguity for non-Hindi and non-Sanskrit speakers, particularly in South India, and violate Article 348 of the Constitution, which mandates that all Bills and Acts be in English to promote linguistic unity. He contends that this act of “linguistic imperialism” undermines democratic values and federalism, potentially causing language-based tensions.

The plea, to be heard on May 29, 2024, by Chief Justice A.J. Desai and Justice V.G. Arun, seeks a court declaration that the titles are ultra vires and requests the Acts be renamed in English.

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