Home Ministry designates 9 individuals as terrorists under UAPA
Part of: GS Prelims and Mains II and III – Polity and Security issues
- 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:
- 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.