THE UNLAWFUL ACTIVITIES PREVENTION ACT (UAPA), 1967 BY MONISHA ACHARYA @LEXCLIQ

 

INTRODUCTION
The Unlawful Activities Prevention Act, (UAPA) , 1967 is the primary counter terror law in India, it was enacted with the objective to Control Unlawful Activities. It involve the essence of the Preventive Detention Act which expired in 1969.
This act was originally enacted during Indira Gandhi time period but law has undergone over dozen of amendments. The last one was in 2019 under the Narendra Modi government.

History:-
As India was facing external aggression from China and on other hand CN Annadurai was demanding separate Tamil country, this was the time which created panic in the country. So government thought we have emergency provision to deal with China, and to deal with domestic crisis there is a need to restrict the Right to Freedom of its citizens. Before end of the emergency they introduced the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act 1967.

National Integration Council setup the committee for National integration and Regionalisation. According to the recommendation of this committee 16th Amendment Act of the Constitution was brought. Reasonable restrictions were given to three fundamental rights of the citizens that is Freedom of Speech and Expression, Right to Assemble and Right to form Association and Union.

UAPA was anti-terror legislation and this legislation enforcement body is NIA counter terrorism agency. UAPA mainly deals with unlawful activities of individuals or associations whose intent is to bring cession or separation and to disturb the sovereignty and territorial integrity of nation.

In 2004 Amendment of UAPA increased its ambit by including punishment for terrorist act under section 15 chapter IV of the act. On the same year prevention of terrorism act POTA was repealed. This is also known as POTA 2.0.
As changing technics and developments in terror groups amendments were made in UAPA.
The most recent amendment in UAPA was in 2019 – before 2019 this act was applicable only for organisations but after the amendment this was applicable to individuals also. This is mentioned in Chapter 6 Section 35 and 36 of UAPA.

Under the recent Amendment the government has given power to designate an organization as a terrorist organization if :-
It commits or participates in act of terrorism.
Prepares or promotes terrorism.
Otherwise involved in terrorism.

Second amendment was detention which stated that if a person is booked under UAPA Act then he can be detained for 180 days without any charge sheet. This time period can be extended and it restricts the right to bail for the person detained. This is mentioned in Section 43 D of UAPA act.

And finally in the 3rd Amendment, 4th schedule was added to UAPA act which gave powers to the government that they can add the name of the individual in this schedule.
Remedy available to the person is that after his name is added within 45 days he can request the government to de-notify his name from the schedule.

Monisha Acharya

An aspiring lawyer in process.

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