Law Commission Calls For Relook On Sec 124A IPC
The Law commission had invited opinion on the prospect of either redefining or doing away with section 124A.
Dissent and criticism of the government are essential ingredients of a robust in a vibrant democracy: Law Commission of India.
“For merely expressing a thought that is not in consonance with the policy of the Government of the day, a person should not be charged under the section”, stated the Consultation Paper issued by the Law Commission of India on 30 August 2018 and calling for redefinition of sedition, which is made punishable by Section 124A of the Indian Penal Code, 1860. The Consultation Paper solicits public suggestions before the Commission makes final recommendations on the issue.
The Commission headed by retired Supreme Court judge Justice Dr.B.S Chauhan noted that in a number of cases, scepticism has been expressed by the judiciary about the potential misuse of the sedition law.
“In a democracy, singing from the same songbook is not a benchmark of patriotism. People should be at liberty to show their affection towards their country in their own way. For doing the same, one might indulge in constructive criticism or debates, pointing out the loopholes in the policy of the Government. Expressions used in such thoughts might be harsh and unpleasant to some, but that does not render the actions to be branded seditious”, said by Commission in Consultation Paper.
The Commission pointed that “Section 124A should be invoked only in cases where the intention behind any act is to disrupt public order or to overthrow the Government with violence and illegal means”.
Read the Consultation Paper. Click Here