Terrorist clause in amended UAPA: No cause for worry says Home Ministry official
New Delhi, July 27: The Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Amendment Bill 2019 has come under fire from the opposition. The provision to designate an individual as a terrorist is the new addition to the act.
The opposition felt that the provision may be misused. The bill seeks to designate an individual suspected to have terror links as a terrorist. It allows the National Investigation Agency to attach properties linked to such persons, without permission from the respective state police.
The opposition has in particular raised concerns over the process involved. Designating individuals is independent of a judicial process. Further the process to designate a person does not differentiate between those standing trial in India and those who have fled the country.
An official said that there are enough safeguards to ensure that the process is not misused. There are similar provisions in countries such as the United States, Israel and even China.
The process to designate an individual would be similar to the one adopted while designating a group. When a request to designate an individual is made, there would be several layers of scrutiny, before a decision is taken. The decision would go right up to the Home Minister, an official explained.
Further there is also a provision for appeal. A specially constituted review committee headed by a retired judge would hear such appeals if an individual feels he or she has been wronged.
The bill it may be recalled was introduced in the Lok Sabha on July 8 after the Cabinet cleared the same.