A Bengaluru student activist named Amulya Leona has been booked for sedition by the Bengaluru Police on Thursday (February 20, 2020). A rally was held by AIMIM leader Asadudin Owaisi on Thursday in Bengaluru’s Freedom Park against CAA. Amulya was present in this rally and she took to the stage and raised the slogan of ‘PAKISTAN ZINDABAD' from the mic. Asadudin Owaisi stopped her and took her off the stage. He also clarified that Amulya has no connections with AIMIM and raising slogans like these is wrong. Soon after this, the Bengaluru police arrested her and booked a case of sedition under Section 124A of the Indian Penal Code, 1860.
A brief history of the Sedition Law In India
The law of sedition was first introduced in India during the Britisher’s Rule. Since then, it has been an issue of debate. According to Section 124A of IPC treason has been defined as the use of any kind of written or oral words, symbols to spread hatred or dissatisfaction. This may lead to booking of the person for the case of Sedition. This clause also states that any statement against the government or its steps will not be considered as Sedition unless it does not disturb the normal atmosphere of the country. This was propounded during the time of Quit India Movement in 1942. Criticism of any step by the administration is also not treated as Sedition unless it spreads hatred & disturbs the normal day to day activities.
Sentencing And Punishments
The law of sedition is very rigid. No warrant is required to arrest a person under this law. There cannot be any treaty between the accused and the victim. Treason comes under non bailable offences. After a case of sedition has been imposed on a person he has to surrender his passport and he will not be eligible for any Government posts. Imprisonment of 3 years to lifetime can be sentenced by the court under Sedition Charges. However since independence very few cases of Sedition have been encountered and in many cases the charges are not even proven. This law was first introduced by the Britishers in 1860 and it became a part of the Indian Penal Code in 1870.
First case of Sedition in India
The first case of sedition was filed in 1891 in India. Against the editor of a newspaper who criticized the bill of edge of consent. The jury could not come to a conclusion on this matter. After writing an apology letter to the government, the charges were dropped against the Editor. Freedom fighter Bal Gangadhar Tilak was also booked for sedition in 1897 under this law. The British Government stated that due to his hate speech, 2 british officers were killed in Pune. Tilak had to spend a year in jail. Later he was again arrested for Sedition because of a article published in his Newspaper Kesari.
Author: Aishwary Bajpai