Decoding UAPA, by Anubrati Debnath at lexcliq.

Striving amendment in the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA), 1967 that enables the government to announce ‘individuals as terrorists’ as rejected to the last statute which enabled only institutions to be tagged as ‘terrorist organisations’ on August 2, 2019, the Parliament passed Unlawful Activities (Prevention), Amendment Bill, 2019. This arrived after a new amendment in the National Investigation Act, 2008 which gave the National Investigation Agency the authority to “investigate terror crimes relating to Indians and interests of India”. 

  • Legislative and Judicial Inconsistency: The Case of Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA):-


One of the major misses of IPC is that existing a colonial ordinance of the 19th Century, it is not equipped to survey the organized terrorist crimes that dominant India faces today. It is for this reason, that moment and again, the Parliament has liveried enacting counter-terrorism security constitutions in India such as the erstwhile Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act (TADA), 1987 and Prevention of Terrorist Activities Act (POTA), 2002 etc along with the institutionalisation of organisations such as National Investigation Agency to deter the anti-national and terrorist activities in the region. 


The UAPA, 1967 is one mighty law with an object to “provide for the further effective deterrence of certain unlawful activities of souls and associations, and dealing with terrorist activities and for matters connected therewith.” Initially, this Act did not contain terrorist acts but later in 2012 this act was rewritten and its scope was expanded vaguely to contain terrorist activities as well. 


In 2011, the Supreme Court had tried to dispel the ambiguity by clutching that “membership” was limited to a stake in active incitement of violence but this has been a weak attempt. In the case of Romila Thapar and others v. UOI the Supreme Court, without any perception, dismissed the inquiry petition which was filed in light of the verdict regarding the Bhima Koregaon aftermath. Five accused population were convicted under the UAPA on the soil that they were the basis of CPI (M) which is a banned organization. Yet, the petitioners were not allowed to analyse this evidence, as it was submitted in closed covers and only judges could peruse it. The lopsided justification “having suspected Maoist links” goes a tall way in ensuring that the unique liberty of individuals is effaced largely uncertainly  


  • Internalsation of Individual Rights :


The state legislature and Parliament uphold stood constantly failing to deliberate upon individual rights. Swayed by the requisite of common defence, i.e. hysteria generated by ‘law and order’ and ‘security of the state’, law-making police turn a blind eye to Part III of the Constitution. 


  • Need to reevaluate the laws :


There is lasting law-making by the central and state legislatures but these principles are mostly substituting one rule or another and the government often forgets the laws existing in that area which produces more confusion. However, the finding indeed cannot be “Rule Formalism” where the principles are mechanically applied by mediators in each case in the questioning of a definite answer, leaving no area for the judge’s discretion.

  • Law cases:-


  • Decoding Delhi riots case police charge sheet on September 15, 2020 : 


Delhi Police has called Yogendra Yadav, Sitaram Yechury and other prominent phrases in its acknowledgement of the charge sheet in the February Delhi riots lawsuit. On Sunday evening, Umar Khalid was arrested by Delhi police under the strict Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) in relationship with the northeast Delhi riots.


  • Petition filed in SC against UAPA Act :


A petition, moved by Delhi inhabitant Sajal Awasthi on Saturday, announced the amended law allowed the state to interfere upon the fundamental rights of dignity, free language, conflict and reputation. It argued that the UAPA Amendment Act, 2019, granted upon the Centre “discretionary, unfettered and unbound powers” to declare a person a terrorist. The constitution could be used by the state to bring disrepute to a person, and even painfully, rob him or her of liberty. 

  • Nearly 2,000 people arrested under UAPA in 2019: MHA tells Lok Sabha:


In a written declaration by the Minister of State (Home Affairs) G Kishan Reddy, the state-wise number of prosecutions registered and persons apprehended under UAPA from 2015 to 2019 was furnished demonstrating shocking data.

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