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Home Ministry designates 9 individuals as terrorists under UAPA

  • IASbaba
  • July 2, 2020
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Home Ministry designates 9 individuals as terrorists under UAPA

Part of: GS Prelims and Mains II and III – Polity and Security issues

In news:

  • Union Home Ministry designated nine individuals as “terrorists” under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA).
  • The nine persons declared terrorists are linked to separatist Khalistani groups that seek to establish a separate country for the Sikhs.

Important Value Additions:

About Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA)

  • It was enacted in 1967. 
  • It aims at effective prevention of unlawful activities associations in India.
  • Under the act, the investigating agency can file a charge sheet in maximum 180 days after the arrests and the duration can be extended further after intimating the court.
  • Till 2004, “unlawful” activities referred to actions related to secession and cession of territory. The 2004 amendment, added “terrorist act” to the list of offences.
  • If Centre deems an activity as unlawful then it may, by way of an Official Gazette, declare it so.
  • It has death penalty and life imprisonment as highest punishments.

2019 Amendment of UAPA

  • The act was amended to designate individuals as terrorists on certain grounds provided in the Act. Earlier only organisations could be declared as such.
  • Not designating individuals as terrorists, would give them an opportunity to circumvent the law and regroup under different name.
  • It empowered the Director General of NIA to grant approval of seizure or attachment of property when the case is investigated by NIA.
  • Earlier it required the consent of State Police which delayed the process.
  • It empowered the officers of the NIA, of the rank of Inspector or above, to investigate cases of terrorism.
  • It gave the Home Ministry the power to designate individuals as terrorists.

Do you know?

  • NIA was created after the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks with the enactment of the National Investigation Agency Act 2008.
  • NIA is the Central Counter Terrorism Law Enforcement Agency of India and it works under overall guidance of Ministry of Home Affairs.

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