RS: Oppn questions increase in number of sedition cases

Several Opposition MPs in the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday raised questions regarding the increasing number of sedition cases being registered.

Congress MP Chhaya Verma during the Question Hour sought answers from Home Minister Amit Shah as to why there has been an increase in the number of sedition cases.

Verma said that the data provided by the Centre said that in 2019 there was an increase of 160 per cent while the conviction rate was only two per cent. She alleged that this meant that false cases were being registered under this law. This was countered by Minister of State for Home G. Kishan Reddy, who said, “Cases are decided by the courts and not by the government.”

Several other opposition MPs, including Congress MP K.T.S Tulsi and Rashtriya Janata Dal MP Manoj Jha, then raised supplementary questions and targetted the Centre that false cases were being registered to silence the critics of the government including activists and many others.

To this Reddy replied that the Centre was not misusing the law, and ‘it is the state governments which are using this law, and the current Central government has only compiled these cases in the NCRB’.

Reddy said that the Congress-led state governments have used the law most and booked many under this law.

According to the law, under section 124-A of Indian Penal Code, 1860, sedition is an offence that criminalises speech that is regarded to be disloyal to or threatening to the state.