CLAT (Common Law Admission Test) 2020 MCQs Questions Paper Part 20

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Article 20 (1) of the Indian Constitution prohibits Ex Post Facto laws. The expression Ex Post Facto Law means a law, which imposes penalties or convictions on the acts already done and increases the penalty for such acts. In other words, Ex Post Facto Law imposes penalties retrospectively. For example, The Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961 came into force from

20 ⁄ 5 ⁄ 1961. A person guilty of accepting dowry is punishable under the Act after 20 ⁄ 5 ⁄ 1961 and not before 20 ⁄ 5 ⁄ 1961.

Ex post facto laws are of three kinds as follows: A. A law which declared some act or omission as an offence for the first time after the completion of that act or omission. B. A law which enhances the punishment or penalty for an offence subsequent to the commission of that offence. C. A law which prescribes a new and different procedure for the prosecution of an offence subsequent to the commission of that offence.

Clause (1) of Art. 20 provides protection only in respect of the above first two categories of ex post facto laws i.e.. , laws which declare acts as offences subsequent to the commission to those acts and laws which enhance the penalty subsequently.

Article 20 (1) provides: No person shall be convicted of any offence except for violation of a law in force at the time of the commission of the act charged as an offence, nor be subjected to a penalty greater than that which might have been inflicted under the law in force at the time of the commission of the offence. The first part of clause (1) provides that no person shall be convicted of any offence except for violation of law in force at the time of the commission of the act charged as an offence. The second part of clause (1) protects a person form a penalty greater than that which he might have been subjected to at the time of the commission of the offence.

Question 101

The Parliament of India legislated the Sexual Harassment at Workplace Act, in the year 2013 and simultaneously some new offences were also added to the Indian Penal Code, 1860. Mr. A is an employee of an institution, against whom departmental enquiry has been initiated for committing sexual harassment of a female colleague in the year 2012. Now, choose the correct option.

A. Such inquiry is valid as per Article 20 (1) of the Constitution as the complaint was made after the act came into force.

B. Article 20 (1) will not be applicable as the matter does not relate to an offence.

C. As the Act was passed in the year 2013, any inquiry under such Act is invalid.

D. Only inquiry may be conducted but no penal action can be taken against him after such inquiry.

Question 102

Article 20 (1) would not affect which of the following acts of the legislature?

A. Act of the legislature enhancing the term of imprisonment.

B. Act of the legislature enhancing the amount of fine.

C. Act of the legislature changing the punishment of death to life imprisonment.

D. Act of legislature changing the nature of imprisonment from simple to rigorous.

Question 103

Mr. A is a student of Law, aged 19 years. He is socially active and expresses his opinion on every social and political event of the nation through social media platforms. In one of his blogs, he severely criticized the policy of a state government of changing names of cities and towns. He also stated that the government is biased towards a particular religion. The said blog was posted on 19th April, 2020 and subsequently, an amendment was made to Indian Penal Code whereby Hate Speech was made a distinct offence and punishment was prescribed. An action was brought against him under the said provision for the blog. Now, choose the most appropriate option amongst the following

A. Mr. A may be liable for the offence of Hate speech as the blog was not removed even after the amendment.

B. Mr. A may be liable for the offence of Hate speech as Article 20 (1) does not cover such areas.

C. Mr. A may not be liable for the offence because the act was done before the amendment.

D. Mr. A may not be liable for the offence as his blog was innocent and a fair criticism.

Question 104

Considering the fact situations given in the above question, the Parliament passes a legislation in September 2020, whereby an amendment is made to the Juvenile Act and now a person below the age of 20 would be a Juvenile and special procedure would be followed for his trial. Choose the most appropriate option amongst the following

A. Mr. A would not be considered as juvenile as it is prohibited under the scheme of Article 20 (1) .

B. Mr. A would not be considered as juvenile because the amendment came after he committed the offence.

C. Mr. A would be considered a Juvenile and tried under the new procedure.

D. None of the above.

Question 105

Considering the fact situation in the third question to this passage, the Parliament passes a legislation for the Probation of Offenders, under which any offender below the age of 21 will not serve the sentence of imprisonment in a prison, instead he will serve the sentence in a probation house. Now, choose the most appropriate option.

A. Mr. A will get the benefit of Probation of Offenders Act.

B. Mr. A will not get the benefit of Probation of Offenders act as it is prohibited by Article 20 (1) of the Constitution.

C. It is discretion of Mr. A to decide whether he wants such benefit or not.

D. None of the above.

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