In the wake of strong opposition from the media, civil society and the opposition, the government has decided to backtrack from implementing the newly added section 118 A of Kerala Police Act, 2011, that would muzzle all types of free speech and opinion through any medium.
“The amendment has invited opinions from various corners.
All including those who are backing the Leftist Democratic Fund and those who are standing for democratic values expressed concern about the new amendment. Under these circumstances, the government does not intend to implement the amendment.
A detailed discussion will be held in the assembly for seeking opinion on Section 118 A of Kerala Police Act, 2011 from all and only then further steps will be taken,” the chief minister said in a statement. The CPM central leadership also had asked the government to withdraw from implementing the amendment.
The insertion of Section 118 A of Kerala Police Act, 2011 , as 118A says that “whoever makes, expresses, publishes or disseminates through any kind of mode of communication, any matter or subject for threatening, abusing, humiliating or defaming a person or class of persons, knowing it to be false and that causes injury to the mind, reputation or property of such person or class of persons or any other person in whom they have interest, shall on conviction, be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years or with fine which may extend to ten thousand rupees or with both.”