Moily flays Cong govt in Karnataka over sedition charge

Moily flays Cong govt in Karnataka over sedition charge

Moily flays Cong govt in Karnataka over sedition charge

Former Union Law Minister Veerappa Moily today criticised his Congress party's government in Karnataka over filing of sedition charge against Amnesty International, saying it is "illegal and improper" and intended "only to silence the protest or resistance".

Moily, a senior leader from Karnataka, said he has already conveyed his unhappiness to the state's Home Minister and would be "questioning" Chief Minister Siddaramaiah too on the issue.

"...I talked to the Home minister of Karnataka. I told him, how it can happen? You know the sedition charge should be filed for conspiring and waging war against the nation and in fact it cannot be just invoked against mere sloganeering.

"And here in this case, filing the case against Amnesty International, particularly the case of sedition, I think it is illegal and improper and I think this is only to silence the protest or resistance. It amounts to violating the freedom of speech," he said in Karan Thapar's 'To the Point' programme on India Today.

Moily said the state Home minister had "explained" to him that it is not intended like that and they are yet to investigate it.

"Of course police have no option but to register a FIR against those who have been named in the complaint. But that doesn't mean, just because ABVP has filed a complaint on these charges, I don't think police is entitled to repeat it in their FIR without a proper investigation, particularly a charge like sedition, which is a very serious offence," he said.

To a query, Moily said, "I will be questioning (the Chief Minister)" and request him to make an inquiry in this matter and that it should not happen again. He said the sedition charges are very easily and very casually being slapped in the country.

"I think it is the primary duty of the union Home ministry to send the circular with regard to the sedition charges. How it should be filed and there should be proper guidelines. Otherwise anybody with a political motive or to put down the any dissent opinion in the democracy...It is against to the contrary to the highest value of democracy," he added.

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