Today: Jun 21, 2024

Word ‘anti-national’ not defined in statutes; first inserted during Emergency: Govt tells LS

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New Delhi: The word ‘anti-national’ has not been defined in statutes but was first inserted in the Constitution during Emergency in 1976 and subsequently removed a year later, Union minister Nityanand Rai informed Lok Sabha on Tuesday.

Rai said this while replying to a question of Hyderabad MP Asaduddin Owaisi, who asked whether the government has defined the meaning of ‘anti-national’ under any legislation or 11 rules or any other legal enactment that is enforced in the country.

Owaisi also asked whether the Supreme Court has prescribed any guidelines to deal with crimes relating to ‘anti-national’ activity.

“The word ‘anti-national’ has not been defined in Statutes. However, there are criminal legislations and various judicial pronouncements to sternly deal with unlawful and subversive activities which are detrimental to the unity and integrity of the country,” Rai said in the written reply.

The Minister of State for Home said it is relevant to mention that the Constitution (42nd Amendment) Act, 1976 inserted in the Constitution Article 31D (during Emergency) which defined “anti-national activity” and this Article 31D was subsequently, omitted by the Constitution (43rd Amendment) Act, 1977.