source: The Leaflet
”Affection cannot be manufactured or regulated by the law. If one has no affection for a person, one should be free to give the fullest expression to his disaffection, so long as he does not contemplate, promote or incite to violence.”. - Mahatma Gandhi
The term ‘Sedition’ means “conduct or speech which results in mutiny against the authority of the state”. It is a controversial provision which was introduced by The British Government in 1870 to stifle dissent against the colonial Government of the time. The Origin of Sedition law in India is connected to the Wahabis Movement of the 19th century, wherein, the Muslim Ulema, Ahmed Barelvi had given a call of jihad against The British Government.
Section 124A IPC explains sedition as: “Whoever, by words, either spoken or written, or by signs, or by visible representation, or otherwise, brings or attempts to bring into hatred or contempt, or excites or attempts to excite dissatisfaction towards, the Government established by law in India, shall be punished with imprisonment for life, to which a fine may be added; or, with imprisonment which may extend to three years, to which a fine may be added; or, with fine.”
The above-mentioned, harsh provision, presents Sedition as an ‘overt conduct’ of free speech and organisation, that tends towards rebellion against the established order. However, it is forgotten that sedition is something which is committed against the government, and not the country.
The preamble of our constitution, very well promises to secure for all its citizens liberty of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship. Freedom of speech and expression is an inherent human right and a part of the basic structure of the constitution. The citizens have a right to think as they like, express their thoughts, have their own beliefs and faith, and worship