In a landmark judgment on Tuesday, the Supreme Court quashed Section 66A of the Information Technology (IT) Act, 2000, which clamped down on freedom of speech and allowed the State to arrest people posting “offensive content”.
The new judgment means, now on, no one will now be arrested for a Facebook post, tweet or cartoon. The court also quashed Section 118(D) of the Kerala Police Act, a similar Act that enabled the state to arrest people. Rajya Sabha MP Rajeev Chandrasekhar, one of the petitioners against the law, said the bill was pushed in seven minutes without debate.
The resolution against the bill was moved by CPM’s P Rajeev in Rajya Sabha and seconded by Chandrasekhar. “The resolution was on the verge of being put to vote but the then law minister Kapil Sibal did not want that and he assured to review it, but did not,” said Chandrashekhar.