Sedition law against India’s conscience; high time SC considers its 'abrogation': Moily

News Network
May 5, 2022

New Delhi, May 5: Senior Congress leader M Veerappa Moily on Thursday said the sedition law is against the conscience of the Indian nation and it is high time the Supreme Court considers "abrogating" it from the pages of criminal law.

His assertion came on a day the Supreme Court said it would hear arguments on May 10 on the legal question whether the pleas challenging the colonial era penal law on sedition be referred to a larger bench and granted time to the Centre to file its response.

The law of sedition has again reignited a public debate, including before the Supreme Court, and the public is very much focused on the subject, Moily noted.

The Britishers fully invoked this section to silence the freedom fighters such as Mahatma Gandhi and Balgangadhar Tilak, the former Union minister and a senior lawyer said.

"It has now become routine for lawmakers both in the state and at the Centre to silence the dissenters who are opposed to the view of the established governments....ultimately the law is misused to kill the democratic ethos in the country," he said.

"Real patriots are put behind bars under the provisions of Section 124 A (sedition) and democratic expression has been assaulted by the governments in power," Moily said.

While Mahatma Gandhi called Section 124A "the prince among the political sections of the IPC designed to suppress the liberty of the citizen", Jawaharlal Nehru said that the provision was "obnoxious" and "highly objectionable", and "the sooner we get rid of it the better", Moily pointed out.

"Both of them voiced conscious consensus of the freedom fighters and patriots. The nation should have scrapped the law as it inherited the colonial legacy of suppressing independent opinion. Hence the sedition law is against the conscience of the Indian nation," he said.

Moily said the second Administrative Reforms Commission in its fifth report on public order considered many provisions on federal crimes, including sedition, and recommended re-examining the offences which have inter-state or national ramification and include them in a new law.

"It is high time that the Supreme Court of India consider abrogating the law of sedition from the pages of criminal law of the country as the said law goes against the patriotic ethos of the country and intends to remove the conscience of ethos of India and also the Constitution and freedom fighters of the country," Moily said.

A special bench comprising Chief Justice N V Ramana and Justices Surya kant and Hima Kohli was also told by Attorney General K K Venugopal, who was assisting in his personal capacity, that the misuse of the provision like it happened against a Maharashtra MP for reciting 'Hanuman Chalisa' has to be stopped by laying down guidelines.

However, there was no need to refer the five-judge bench verdict of the top court in the Kedar Nath case in 1962 to a bench of five or seven judges, the top most law officer said.

The apex court had upheld the constitutional validity of the sedition law in the Kedar Nath Singh case. 

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News Network
June 27,2022

New Delhi, June 27: India's daily Covid-19 cases jumped by 45 per cent on Monday as the nation logged 17,073 new coronavirus infections taking the total tally of Covid-19 cases to 4,34,07,046, while the active cases rose to 94,420, according to the Union Health Ministry data updated on Monday. On Sunday, the nation reported 11,739 cases. 

The death toll climbed to 5,25,020 with 21 new fatalities.

An increase of 1,844 cases has been recorded in the active Covid-19 caseload in a span of 24 hours.

The active cases comprise 0.22 per cent of the total infections. The national Covid-19 recovery rate was 98.57 per cent, the ministry said.

The daily positivity rate was recorded at 5.62 per cent while the weekly positivity rate was recorded at 3.39 per cent, it said.

The number of people who have recuperated from the disease surged to 4,27,87,606, while the case fatality rate was recorded at 1.21 per cent.

According to the ministry, 197.11 crore doses of vaccine have been administered in the country so far under the nationwide Covid-19 inoculation drive.
 

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News Network
June 26,2022

uddhav.jpg

Mumbai, June 26: Shiv Sena rebel leader Eknath Shinde met BJP's Devendra Fadnavis in Gujarat last night to discuss possible government formation in Maharashtra, sources have said. Team Thackeray, meanwhile, said it will "not forget the betrayal" done by the rebels.
    
Latest development

>> This morning, Sena's spokesperson Sanjay Raut took a swipe at the rebels, camping in BJP-ruled Assam. "How long will you hide in Guwahati," he asked in his tweet which included image of Deputy Speaker Narhari Zirwal, who has served notices to 16 rebel MLAs on the Sena disqualification plea.

>> Eknath Shinde flew to Vadodara on a special flight last night from Assam's Guwahati where he is camping with nearly 40 rebel MLAs. Home Minister Amit Shah was also in Vadodara last night, people with direct knowledge of the matter said.

>> After talks with Mr Fadnavis, Mr Shinde returned to the main city in BJP-ruled Assam. Mr Shinde and the rebels want to ally with their former partner, BJP, which they claim is a "natural ally" of the Sena.

>> "We are traditionally the rivals of NCP and Congress, they are our primary challengers in constituencies. We requested CM Uddhav Thackeray that natural alliance should be done," said rebel MLA Chimanrao Patil in a video tweeted by Eknath Shinde.

>> The rebels have said that they are still with the Shiv Sena and claim that they have a two-thirds majority. Rebel MLA Deepak Kesarkar further demanded recognition of their group 'Shiv Sena Balasaheb' and warned of going to court if it is not done and denied the role of the BJP behind their revolt.

>> Despite being reduced to a minority, Team Thackeray has maintained that it will win in the event of a trust vote. "You already know what was discussed in the meeting, the important thing is that we will not forget the betrayal done by rebel Shiv Sena MLAs. We (Shiv Sena) will win for sure," Aaditya Thackeray after a party meeting in Mumbai.

>> The Shiv Sena passed six resolutions at the National Executive meeting chaired by Uddhav Thackeray on Saturday. At the meeting at Sena Bhavan, Mr Thackeray was authorised to take action against the rebels. His side has also challenged a move by the rebels to call themselves "Shiv Sena Balasaheb Thackeray" in a letter to the Election Commission.

>> The ongoing battle for the control of the Shiv Sena between Uddhav Thackeray and Eknath Shinde played out on the streets of Maharashtra on Saturday with the cadres loyal to the Thackerays staging protests against the rebels by defacing their banners, throwing stones, and vandalising the office of an MLA in various parts of the state.

>> The Mumbai police has deployed its personnel at the city-based offices of various political parties and leaders, including ministers, MLAs and MPs, and their residences as a security measure, an official said on Saturday.

>> The prohibitory orders issued by the Mumbai police in the first week of June will continue to remain in place till July 10. It bans the assembly of five or more persons at one place.

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News Network
June 23,2022

Mumbai, June 23: Amid a rebellion by Shiv Sena leader Eknath Shinde, party MP Sanjay Raut on Thursday said the Sena is ready to quit the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government in Maharashtra if the group of rebel legislators camping in Assam returns to Mumbai in 24 hours and discusses the issue with Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray.

Shinde is currently camping with 37 rebel MLAs of the Sena and nine independents in Guwahati, which has plunged the party-led state government into a crisis. The NCP and Congress also share power in the Uddhav Thackeray-led dispensation.

"You say you are real Shiv Sainiks and will not quit the party. We are ready to consider your demand provided you come back to Mumbai in 24 hours and discuss the issue with CM Uddhav Thackeray. Your demand will be considered positively. Don't write letters on Twitter and WhatsApp," Raut told reporters.

"The rebels who are out of Mumbai have raised the issue of Hindutva. If all these MLAs feel that Shiv Sena should walk out of the MVA, show guts to come back to Mumbai. You say you have issues only with the government and also say that you are true Shiv Sainiks...Your demand will be considered. But come and talk with Uddhav Thackeray," he added.

CM Thackeray had on Wednesday offered to quit the top post amid the rebellion by Shinde and later also vacated his official residence in south Mumbai before moving to his family home in suburban Bandra. 

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