SC asks Law Commission to frame guidelines on hate speeches

0
54

Hearing a petition, the Supreme Court on Wednesday asked the Law Commission to look into the issue of hate speeches being made by politicians.

A bench headed by justice BS Chauhan further asked the Commission to consider framing guidelines to prevent such provocative statements.

The crucial development came just weeks before the General Elections, and in response to a petition by NGO Pravasi Bhalai Sangathan.

In its arguments seeking a ban on hate speeches, the NGO contended that such intemperate comments are in violation of the principles of the Indian Constitution.

The PIL had named Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh as respondents as the two states witnessed incidents of alleged hate speeches.

The Election Commission has already apprised the SC about provisions that are there in law for governments to act against inflammatory speeches.

Earlier this month, the Supreme Court had dismissed a PIL seeking its direction to restrain politicians from indulging in “provocative and hate speeches”, saying that it cannot curtail people’s fundamental right to free speech.

“We cannot curtail fundamental rights of people. It is a precious rights guaranteed by Constitution,” a bench headed by Justice RM Lodha said, adding “we are a mature democracy and it is for the public to decide.”

“We are 128 million people and there would be 128 million views. One is free not accept the view of others,” the bench said.