List of 5 Strange Laws in India which still exist

India is the land of organized, orchestrated chaos. Its multifarious angles, inherent contradictions, and a penchant for bypassing the establishment in the name of ‘Jugaad’ make the ever-present even more bolder.

In this context, for a proper functioning society, a sound and coherent legal system are imperative. Although, most of the problems which we see in our daily lives are caused by a misapplication of law, rather than by the absurdity of law themselves.

But, due to some artifacts of our colonial past, and some mind-boggling reasoning of our very efficient legislature, their vigor and enthusiasm (or perhaps the lack of it), we are left with some very absurd laws.

All we can do is glance at these gem of laws and try to understand or perhaps laugh at the face of such absurdity.

Section 309 of IPC:


For the longest period of time, attempting to commit suicide could land you in jail. Section 309 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) criminalized attempts to suicide and made it punishable. So that if you fail, you have another reason to kill yourself. However, now, the section is effectively overturned by the Mental Health Care Bill.  The government is also in process of deleting this section from the IPC.

No Uniform Drinking Age: 

There is no uniform legal drinking age in India. Since alcohol, and matters relating to it thereof come under the state governments, each state has its own drinking age, which varies from 18 in Goa to 25 in Maharashtra. Effectively, you can get married before you can legally enjoy a drink in public (let that sink in!)  Adding to the confusion, is the fact that the legal age for hard liquor like whiskey, vodka etc is different from beverages like beer and wine. (Go figure!)

Adultery Law:

A woman in India cannot be punished for adultery. Even if she initiated the sexual act and/or consented to it, she will not be held liable.  But the man she engaged with will be, even when both have equally contributed towards the act of adultery. We are still about a decade away from recognizing women as human beings who are sexually active, and can make sexual choices for themselves. (maybe even a century?)

License to Fly Kites:

According to The Aircraft Act of 1934, kites and balloons come under the definition of Aircraft. So legally, you need a license to fly kites and negligent flying of kites could lead to criminal prosecution.

Armed Forces Special Powers Act:

All the 4 laws mentioned before these are downright stupid but are in some way or the other, non-functional. People have found a way around them and these do not affect people directly in their day to day life. However, the most absurd law is something which is taking a toll on our citizen’s life and liberty. This little act is called AFSPA – Armed Forces Special Powers Act.

Under this act, authorities can detain a person without any trial, or due process, for any amount of time, just on a mere suspicion.

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