Delhi HC calls out misuse of UAPA, raises bar for State to slap ‘terror tag’

  • Published
    17th Jun, 2021

GS-II: Indian Polity and Governance

  • Structure, organization and functioning of the Executive and the Judiciary—Ministries and Departments of the Government; pressure groups and formal/informal associations and their role in the Polity.

In a first such instance, the Delhi High Court has called out alleged misuse of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act, 1967 (UAPA) against individuals in cases that do not necessarily fall in the category of “terrorism” cases.

Quoting sections of the UAPA, and a string of key Supreme Court rulings on terrorism and terror laws, the court reasoned that “the more stringent a penal provision, the more strictly it must be construed”. By doing so, it raised the bar for the State to book an individual for terrorism under the UAPA.

Prelims question:

What changes have been brought by the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Amendment Act, 2019 to the original Act of 1967?

  1. The Amendment Act additionally empowers the government to designate individuals as terrorists on the same grounds as for an organization.
  2. It adds “International Convention for Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism” to the list of the treaties, under which, any act committed can be called a terrorist act.

Which of the above statement(s) is/are correct?

  • A.
  • B.
  • C.
  • D.

Mains Question:

A distinguishing feature of any democracy is the space offered for legitimate dissent. Critically analyze.(150 words)


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