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Law panel examining scope of sedition law: Government

New Delhi, July 18: The Law Commission is considering the scope and ambit of the law on sedition, in order to ascertain under what circumstances it can legitimately be invoked, parliament was told on Wednesday. In a written reply in the Rajya Sabha, Minister of State for Home Hansraj Gangaram Ahir said that his Ministry had written to the Ministry of Law and Justice to request the Law Commission to study the usage of the provisions of Section 124 A (Sedition) of Indian Penal Code and suggest amendments, if any.

“The Law Commission has undertaken the examination of Section 124 A and is considering the scope and ambit of the law on sedition, in order to ascertain under what circumstances it can legitimately be invoked,” he said, adding that a draft report on the subject has been prepared and discussed/deliberated in the Law Commission’s meeting held on June 26 and, “as decided, the same is being reviewed”. He said the report is yet to be finalized by the Law Commission.

The government’s move is the outcome of public and intellectuals’ ongoing demand to repeal its outdated Section 124 A that prohibits any words, spoken or written, or any signs or visible representation that can cause “hatred or contempt, or excites or attempts to excite disaffection” toward the government. The Supreme Court has imposed limits on the use of the sedition law, making incitement to violence a necessary element, but it has been seen that police continues to file sedition charges even in cases where this requirement is not met. (IANS)

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