Difference between Indian Penal code(IPC) and Criminal Procedure Code(CRPC)

Indian Penal Code(IPC) is the law that states the punishable offenses in India, along with their punishments or penalty or both. As opposed, the Criminal Procedure Code(CrPC) pertains to the law that describes the overall procedure which is to be followed while undertaking a criminal case.

Nowadays, everywhere in the newspapers, news channels and other social media platforms, like Facebook, Twitter, etc. we come to know about the criminal activities that take place in our area or country such as rapes, murders, thefts, accidents, cyber attack, terrorist activities and so forth. To provide justice to the victims, every country has enforced certain laws for punishing the wrongdoer.

IPC and CrPC are two such laws which are created during the British Raj in India, which help the plaintiff to get justice.

Definition of Indian Penal Code (IPC)

The Indian Penal Code, most popularly referred to as IPC was established in the year 1860, that takes into account every material aspect of the criminal law. It is also considered as the main criminal code of India which covers all the important elements of the criminal law. The origin of IPC dates back to 1834 when the first law commission had recommended for it to be found. It is also called the general penal code of India.

It comprises an of total twenty-three chapters and 511 sections overall. It has been amended over 75 times up till now. Under this code, the punishments are divided into five major sections, i.e. death, imprisonment for life, general imprisonment, forfeiture of property and fine. The law applies to every individual who is an Indian origin, except the persons belonging to the Indian army, as they cannot be charged as per IPC.

Definition of Criminal Procedure Code(CRPC)

Enacted in 1973, the Code of Criminal Procedure first came into force in 1974. The Code of Criminal Procedure can be described as the machinery which provides a mechanism for the main criminal law which is IPC. The Supreme Court, High Court, various level magistrates, and police are the law enforcing bodies that function under the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973.

It details the procedure for:-

  1. Investigation of crime.
  2. Treatment of the suspects.
  3. Evidence collection process.
  4. Determining whether the accused is guilty or innocent.

Criminal Procedure Code aims at providing the proper mechanism for the imposition of criminal law in the country, by setting up the necessary machinery for arresting criminals, investigating cases, presenting criminals before the courts, collecting evidence, determining the guilt or innocence of accused, imposing penalties or punishments, on the accused. In short, it describes the entire procedure for investigation, trial, bail, interrogation, arrest and so on.

Difference Table

GroundIndian Penal Code(IPC)Criminal Procedure Code(CRPC)
MeaningIndian Penal Code or IPC leads to the basic criminal law enforced in the country to cover all sort of criminal activities and provide remedy to them.Criminal Code Procedure (CrPC) implies the law enforced in India for regulating criminal law procedure, that should be followed during a criminal case.
TypeSubstantive LawProcedural Law
ObjectiveTo provide a common penal code.To strengthen the law concerning criminal procedure.
RoleIt lists out various crimes and their punishment.It lays down the steps that are followed for a criminal case.

Author: Shubham siwach

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