Congress leader Rahul Gandhi this morning tweeted and applauded the Supreme Court’s decision to put the sedition law on hold until further notice. In his post, he wrote in Hindi, and said that speaking and telling the truth is an essential part of patriotism and not treason. He insisted that listening to the truth is a duty and crushing it is arrogance.
United With Congress (UWC) has also called this a much-needed order, effectively plugging the rampant misuse of the Sedition law by various governments and their police forces. Furthermore, UWC said that in the 2019 elections, Congress tried to abolish section 124A of the said law but Narendra Modi criticized their move.
The SC today put a stay on the sedition law, until further reconsideration. The court has asked the Centre and the states to not register any new case under section 124A of the IPC. The next hearing in the case is set for July 3. At the same time, the court said that the status quo should be maintained in the pending cases. An issue challenging the constitutional validity of the sedition law was heard by the court today.
The law should not be stopped for now: Solicitor General Tushar Mehta
During the hearing, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, representing the central government in the court, said, “We have drafted the directions to be sent to the state government.” Accordingly, the state governments will be clearly instructed that no FIR can be lodged under the treason clause without the permission of the District Police Captain or SP or higher level officer. With this argument, he told the court that the law should not be withheld at present. He also said that the police officers would give proper reasons in support of registering an FIR under the provisions of treason. An alternative solution is possible until the law is reconsidered.
The law of treason should be stopped immediately: Kapil Sibal
Advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for the petitioner, demanded that the sedition law be stopped immediately. Following all these arguments, the court has now banned the use of the sedition law. He also demanded that the central government reconsider the law. The court said no case would be registered under the Act until a review is done. As well as no action can be taken in the pending case.
A three-member bench of the apex court comprising Chief Justice NV Ramana, Justice Suryakant, and Justice Hima Kohli is hearing the constitutional validity of the sedition law. The Center has filed an affidavit in this regard stating that the government has decided to reconsider the treason law and conduct a thorough investigation. He also said that he would reconsider the constitutional validity of Section 124A of the Sedition Act. However, the court did not recognize the Centre’s side and has prohibited the law for the time being.