With the ongoing session of Rajya Sabha and discussion of various bill, the Opposition on July 3 asked questions related to the sedition law to the Ministry of Home Affairs.
In the time alloted for the unstarred question, TRS MP Dr Banda Prakash asked two questions regarding the scrapping of the sedition law. Responding to his query, Nityanand Rai, Minister of State in the Ministry of Home Affairs stated that there is no proposal to scrap the sedition law.
TRS MP Prakash asked the following question:
Responding to the unstarred questions, Rai said that there is no proposal to scrap the provision under the IPC dealing with the offence of Sedition.
For the second part of the question "that if the government is not planning to scrap it, then why is it so, he answered on behalf of the Ministry of Home Affairs under the Government of India:
"There is a need to retain the provision to effectively combat anti-national and terrorist elements"
Sedition as per Indian Penal Code (IPC) is the section 124-A. It says that
'Whoever, by words, either spoken or written, or by signs, or by visible representation, or otherwise, brings or attempts to bring into hatred or contempt, or excites or attempts to excite disaffection towards the Government established by law in India' shall be punished with life imprisonment.
The law was originally drafted by Thomas Macaulay. Recently, on June 30, the CJM court issued direction to impose sedition charges on 44 people instigating violence in Chingravathi area of Bulandshahr on December 3 last year.
In another case of sedition law, FIR has been registered under Sections 124 A (Sedition), 153A (promoting enmity between different groups on ground of religion), 500(defamation) and 505 (intent to incite) of the Indian Penal Code and section 66 of the IT Act, after a Varanasi-based lawyer Shashank Shekhar filed a complaint against the singer Hard Kaur for her comments on Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat
In what may be called the most talked about case in the recent past, Former Jawaharlal Nehru University Students Union (JNUSU) president Kanhaiya Kumar along nine other were chargesheeted in the JNU sedition case as main accused. Delhi Police had filed a 1,200-page charge sheet at Delhi's Patiala House Court in connection with the JNU sedition case.
On February 9, 2016, anti-national slogans were allegedly raised on the JNU campus during a programme called to protest against the death sentence handed out to Afzal Guru, a convict in the Parliament attack case, which led to a massive row.