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Section 216 BNSS to Section 220 BNSS| Section 217 BNSS| Section 218 BNSS| Section 219 BNSS

Updated: Feb 7

Section 216 BNSS| Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha Sanhita (BNSS):


Procedure for witnesses in case of threatening, etc.


A witness or any other person may file a complaint in relation to an offence under section 232 of the Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita, 2023.


Section 217 BNSS| Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha Sanhita (BNSS):


Prosecution for offences against the State and for criminal conspiracy to commit such offence.


(1) No Court shall take cognizance of—


(a) any offence punishable under Chapter VII or under section 196, section 299

or sub-section (1) of section 353 of the Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita, 2023; or


(b) a criminal conspiracy to commit such offence; or


(c) any such abetment, as is described in section 47 of the Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita, 2023,

except with the previous sanction of the Central Government or of the State Government.


(2) No Court shall take cognizance of—

(a) any offence punishable under section 197 or sub-section (2) or sub-section (3) of section 353 of the Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita, 2023; or

(b) a criminal conspiracy to commit such offence,

except with the previous sanction of the Central Government or of the State Government or

of the District Magistrate.


(3) No Court shall take cognizance of the offence of any criminal conspiracy punishable under sub-section (2) of section 61 of the Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita, 2023, other than a criminal conspiracy to commit an offence punishable with death, imprisonment for life or rigorous imprisonment for a term of two years or upwards, unless the State Government or the District Magistrate has consented in writing to the initiation of the proceedings:



Provided that where the criminal conspiracy is one to which the provisions of section 215 apply, no such consent shall be necessary.


(4) The Central Government or the State Government may, before according sanction under sub-section (1) or sub-section (2) and the District Magistrate may, before according sanction under sub-section (2) and the State Government or the District Magistrate may, before giving consent under sub-section (3), order a preliminary investigation by a police officer not being below the rank of Inspector, in which case such police officer shall have the powers referred to in sub-section (3) of section 174.


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Section 218 BNSS| Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha Sanhita (BNSS):


Prosecution of Judges and public servants.


(1) When any person who is or was a Judge or Magistrate or a public servant not removable from his office save by or with the sanction of the Government is accused of any offence alleged to have been committed by him while acting or purporting to act in the discharge of his official duty, no Court shall take cognizance of such offence except with the previous sanction save as otherwise provided in the Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2013—

(a) in the case of a person who is employed or, as the case may be, was at the time of commission of the alleged offence employed, in connection with the affairs of the Union, of the Central Government;

(b) in the case of a person who is employed or, as the case may be, was at the time of commission of the alleged offence employed, in connection with the affairs of a State, of the State Government:


Provided that where the alleged offence was committed by a person referred to in clause (b) during the period while a Proclamation issued under clause (1) of article 356 of the Constitution was in force in a State, clause (b) will apply as if for the expression "State Government" occurring therein, the expression "Central Government" were substituted:

Provided further that such Government shall take a decision within a period of one hundred and twenty days from the date of the receipt of the request for sanction and in case it fails to do so, the sanction shall be deemed to have been accorded by such Government:


Provided also that no sanction shall be required in case of a public servant accused of any offence alleged to have been committed under section 64, section 65, section 66, section 68, section 69, section 70, section 71, section 74, section 75, section 76, section 77, section 78, section 79, section 143, section 199 or section 200 of the Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita, 2023.


(2) No Court shall take cognizance of any offence alleged to have been committed by any member of the Armed Forces of the Union while acting or purporting to act in the discharge of his official duty, except with the previous sanction of the Central Government.


(3) The State Government may, by notification, direct that the provisions of sub-section (2) shall apply to such class or category of the members of the Forces charged with the maintenance of public order as may be specified therein, wherever they may be serving, and thereupon the provisions of that sub-section will apply as if for the expression "Central Government" occurring therein, the expression "State Government" were substituted.


(4) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (3), no Court shall take cognizance of any offence, alleged to have been committed by any member of the Forces charged with the maintenance of public order in a State while acting or purporting to act in the discharge of his official duty during the period while a Proclamation issued under clause (1) of article 356 of the Constitution was in force therein, except with the previous sanction of the Central Government.


(5) The Central Government or the State Government, may determine the person by whom, the manner in which, and the offence or offences for which, the prosecution of such Judge, Magistrate or public servant is to be conducted, and may specify the Court before which the trial is to be held.


Section 219 BNSS| Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha Sanhita (BNSS):


Prosecution for offences against marriage.


 (1) No Court shall take cognizance of an offence punishable under sections 81 to 84 (both inclusive) of the Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita, 2023 except upon a complaint made by some person aggrieved by the offence:


Provided that—


(a) where such person is a child, or is of unsound mind or is having intellectual disability requiring higher support needs, or is from sickness or infirmity unable to make a complaint, or is a woman who, according to the local customs and manners, ought not to be compelled to appear in public, some other person may, with the leave of the Court, make a complaint on his or her behalf;


(b) where such person is the husband and he is serving in any of the Armed Forces of the Union under conditions which are certified by his Commanding Officer as precluding him from obtaining leave of absence to enable him to make a complaint in person, some other person authorised by the husband in accordance with the provisions of sub-section (4) may make a complaint on his behalf;


(c) where the person aggrieved by an offence punishable under section 82 of the Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita, 2023 is the wife, complaint may be made on her behalf by her father, mother, brother, sister, son or daughter or by her father's or mother's brother or sister, or, with the leave of the Court, by any other person related to her by blood, marriage or adoption.


(2) For the purposes of sub-section (1), no person other than the husband of the woman shall be deemed to be aggrieved by any offence punishable under section 84 of the Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita, 2023.


(3) When in any case falling under clause (a) of the proviso to sub-section (1), the complaint is sought to be made on behalf of a child or of a person of unsound mind by a person who has not been appointed or declared by a competent authority to be the guardian of the child, or of the person of unsound mind, and the Court is satisfied that there is a guardian so appointed or declared, the Court shall, before granting the application for leave, cause notice to be given to such guardian and give him a reasonable opportunity of being heard.


(4) The authorisation referred to in clause (b) of the proviso to sub-section (1), shall be in writing, shall be signed or otherwise attested by the husband, shall contain a statement to the effect that he has been informed of the allegations upon which the complaint is to be founded, shall be countersigned by his Commanding Officer, and shall be accompanied by a certificate signed by that Officer to the effect that leave of absence for the purpose of making a complaint in person cannot for the time being be granted to the husband.


(5) Any document purporting to be such an authorisation and complying with the provisions of sub-section (4), and any document purporting to be a certificate required by that sub-section shall, unless the contrary is proved, be presumed to be genuine and shall be received in evidence.


(6) No Court shall take cognizance of an offence under section 64 of the Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita, 2023, where such offence consists of sexual intercourse by a man with his own wife, the wife being under eighteen years of age, if more than one year has elapsed from the date of the commission of the offence.


(7) The provisions of this section apply to the abetment of, or attempt to commit, an offence as they apply to the offence.


Section 220 BNSS| Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha Sanhita (BNSS):


Prosecution of offences under section 85 of Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita, 2023.


No Court shall take cognizance of an offence punishable under section 85 of the Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita, 2023 except upon a police report of facts which constitute such offence or upon a complaint made by the person aggrieved by the offence or by her father, mother, brother, sister or by her father's or mother's brother or sister or, with the leave of the Court, by any other person related to her by blood, marriage or adoption.

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