The Cabinet on Monday gave the final approval to the draft of Cyber Security Act, 2023, keeping the offences under its four sections as non-bailable.

The offences are related to intrusion into key information infrastructures, damaging computers and computer systems, cyber terrorist activities, and hacking related crimes.

The approval came from the Cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at her office in the city.

The draft cyber security act has been designed to replace the existing Digital Security Act, 2018.

"In the draft law, the offences under four sections are non-bailable, the offences under the remaining sections are bailable," said Cabinet Secretary Md Mahbub Hossain while briefing reporters after the meeting.

"The intrusion into important information infrastructures and others are in the section-17, while damaging computers and computer system are in the section-19, cyber terrorist acts and committing such crimes are in the section-27, and hacking related crimes are in the section-33," he said.

The Cabinet Secretary said the already filed cases will run under the existing law- Digital Security Act as a provision was incorporated in the proposed law.

In the draft cyber security act 2023, the offences and punishment provisions have been cited in the section 17-33.

On August 07, the Cabinet in principle approved the cyber security act 2023 with a total of 60 sections.

Besides, the Cabinet meeting on Monday also cleared the draft of National Parliament (Reserved Women Seat) Election (Amendment) Act, 2023, raising the security money for a candidate to Tk 20,000 from Tk 10,000 and extending the election timeframe to 90 days from the existing 45 days.

The draft law was placed to harmonise the provisions related to security deposit and election timeframe of the National Parliament (Reserved Women Seat) Election 2004 with the provisions of other laws, said Mahbub Hossain.

Noting that each MP candidate from a general constituency needs to deposit Tk 20,000 as security money and the election to a vacant constituency needs to be arranged within 90 days as per the laws, he said adding that now the same provisions were proposed in the draft law.

The Cabinet in principle approved the draft of Land Reform Act, 2023 keeping a provision that any individual can't be owner of more than 60 Bighad lf arable land with few exceptions.

Besides, another new provision was incorporated in the proposed law regarding modernisation of land management and database, said the top bureaucrat.

The proposed law was framed bringing some changes in the Land Reform Ordinance, 1984, he said.

"The punishment for violating the law was raised to Tk one lakh in fine or one-month jail from the existing Tk 2,000 fine," he said.

Now no individual can be the owner of 60 Bighas of land anymore in the future, said Mahbub Hossain.

The Cabinet in principle approved the draft of Dr MA Wazed Miah Agricultural University Act, 2023 to establish a university in Natore.

The meeting gave the final approval to the draft of Trade Organisation (Amendment) Act, 2023 subjected to vetting by the Legislative Division, aiming to bring some changes in the existing law of 2022.

In case of any problem to hold the election, the existing committee of any trade organisation can continue its operation till one year after expiry of its tenure in line with the draft law, said the Cabinet Secretary.

But now the committee can run operations till six months after the expiry of its tenure in such circumstances as per the existing law, he said.

The Cabinet cleared the draft of New Development Bank, 2023 subjected to vetting of the Legislative Division in order to give the legal protection of the bank and its activities in Bangladesh.

Bangladesh has recently become a member of the New Development Bank, a multilateral bank established by the BRICS states. The share of Bangladesh in the bank is one percent.

Moreover, the Cabinet gave the final approval to the drafts of the Land Crime Prevention and Remedy Act, 2023 and National Foundation for Development of Disabled Persons Act, 2023, while it approved in principle the draft of Bangladesh Patent Act, 2023.

The meeting endorsed the draft Memorandum of Understanding to be signed between Bangladesh and the United Arab Emirates on entry visa requirements.

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