Hyderabad: The sedition cases booked in Telangana (three in 2014 and one in 2016) since its formation have been very weak and no one has been summoned or arrested.
Police investigation in these cases often hit roadblocks due to lack of evidence. Two years after booking a sedition case against TRS leader K. Kavitha, nothing has happened other than registration of an FIR.
Prominent lawyers say the same will happen in the new case against Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi, Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal, CPM leader Sitaram Yechury, JNUSU president Kanhaiya Kumar and others.
They add that the local courts shouldn’t become laughing stocks by issuing orders to the police to investigate silly complaints. In the second week of August, 2014, a local court in Hyderabad had directed the Madannapet police to book sedition charges against Kavitha on her alleged remarks on Jammu & Kashmir and Telangana.
The order came following a complaint from BJP city legal cell convener K. Karunasagar who alleged that Ms Kavitha had said Jammu & Kashmir and Telangana were not part of India before independence. Police had registered an FIR.
“The case was later tra-nsferred to the Central Crime Station since similar complaints against the leader had be-en filed the-re,” said Mr Mohammed Ashwak, ACP of Santho-shnagar division.
At the CCS, investigation officials neither took forward the probe nor did they file a chargesheet. In response to the queries regarding the case, officials say “investigation is going on”.
In the current case, legal experts say that the acts of opposition leaders in supporting JNU students did not amount to sedition. They say sedition charges could only be slapped when one’s act or speech led to “incitement of imminent lawless action or widespread violence”.
"What is seditious in the Opposition leaders’ act of supporting JNU students? I fail to understand why the court gives reference to such silly complaints while there are other serious cases to be dealt with," said prominent lawyer Pappu Nageswar Rao.
Officials from Cyberabad say they need to wait and watch on this case. "We have sought legal opinion. Based on that we will know how to investigate the case," said Saroornagar inspector S. Lingaiah.
Many legal experts also feel that India’s 156-year-old, colonial era sedition law itself should be done away with. They say countries like United Kingdom, Scotland, South Korea and Indonesia have already removed the law. Sedition charges are booked under Sections 121, 121A, 122, 123 & 124A of IPC....