Newdelhi:2/8/19:Parliament has passed the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Amendment Bill, 2019 with the Rajya Sabha approving it today. The Lok Sabha has already passed the bill.
The bill was passed with 147 members voting in favour of the bill and 42 against.
Replying to discussion on the bill, Home Minister Amit Shah reiterated NDA government’s commitment to fight against terrorism. He said there is a need to speak in one voice against terrorism.
Referring to some members objection to naming an individual as a terrorist, Mr. Shah said the countries like US, Pakistan and China also has similar provisions to name an individual as a terrorist. He emphatically said a terrorist does not belong to any religion and the law should be amended along with time.
The Minister also hit out at Congress for raising apprehension of misuse of the legislation saying the main opposition party does not have rights to talk on the issue as it has been misusing laws. The House also negated amendments moved by DMK and CPI(M) to send the bill to Select Committee.
Earlier participating in the debate, Congress objected to some of the provisions of the bill saying they are unconstitutional and against individual liberty.
P. Chidambaram said the bill empowers the Central government to name any individual a terrorist if it believes so. He said the Bill will be struck down by the court.
The Congress leader questioned the provisions in the bill saying the individual is already covered in the law and there is no need to distinguish between organization and individual on the issue of terrorism.
MP Swapan Dasgupta supported for the Bill. Shamsher Singh Manhas of BJP also supported the bill saying it is the need of the hour.
Elamaram Kareem of CPI(M) criticized the bill saying it gives power to NIA to go to any state according to its will. He said people are afraid of this legislation. He accused the government of being afraid of the voice of dissent.
Questioning the bill, Manoj Jha of RJD termed it as draconian. P. Wilson of DMK opposed the Bill demanding to send it to Select Committee or Standing Committee. He said the bill is against the principle of natural justice.
While Mohammad Fayaz of PDP opposed the Bill, Vijayasai Reddy of YSR Congress welcomed the Bill.
The bill seeks to further amend the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967.