Hate Crime, Punishment
- The Article 19(1) (A) of the Constitution of India states that, “all citizens shall have the right to freedom of speech and expression”.
- Hate speech has not yet been defined by law.
- IPC Section which relates to Hate speech
- Section 153A. Promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence.
- Section 295A. Deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs.
- Section 298. Uttering, words, etc., with deliberate intent to wound the religious feelings of any person.
- Various Law commissions have recommended to criminalize hate speech but as of right now it has not been done.
- Most sections in IPC which can be applied for hate speech is mostly concerned with targeting religion or caste and forget other forms of hate speech such as against sexual orientation.
- There is a growing need to regulate hate speech due to rising popularity of social media sites and the anonymity it provides, leads to people spreading rumors and fake news and hate speech.
- There is also concern that some extremist organizations will use these statements as recruitment tools to cause chaos within the country.
- This was seen in France and some western countries as violence was unleashed due to some comments regarding the Prophet. Similar killings had happened in India in past few days regarding the comments about the Prophet.
- Hence while punishing the perpetrators of violence, we must also assure the various minority communities that their cultural and religious sentiments will be respected.
Source The Hindu
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