Following CJI NV Ramana’s remark during a hearing on the sedition law in India, former Chief Justice of India (CJI) and Rajya Sabha MP Ranjan Gogoi batted for the controversial Section 124A of the IPC, saying that challenging the legitimacy of law should be the last resort.
Before stressing that there was a growing tendency in the country to challenge laws, he said that possibility of misuse of law is not enough to scrap it.
In an interview, retired Justice Ranjan Gogoi discussed the sedition law and controversies surrounding it in detail.
Reflecting on the Supreme Court’s strong words against the sedition law recently, the Rajya Sabha MP said, “I don’t think the chief justice said that the law should be scrapped. Section 124A is part of Chapter 6 of the Indian Penal Code.”
During a hearing on sedition law today, CJI NV Ramana noted, “Our concern is misuse of law and no accountability of executive agencies”, clarifying that he was not blaming any state government for the misuse.
Dealing with the CJI’s remark, Ranjan Gogoi said that he did not have the statistics with him on the use of Section 124A but the possibility of misuse is not enough to scrap the law.
“Every law is capable of use and misuse. The possibility of misuse is not enough to scrap the law,” he said. The Rajya Sabha MP went on to add that if the Law is misused, there are ways and means to remedy the situation.
“The court judges the legality of legislation and the government judges the necessity of the legislation. If the government chooses to ignore the law, then the government is wrong,” he said.
The former CJI went on to stress that it is not a healthy practice to cut laws from the roots and that challenging the legitimacy of legislation must be the last resort.
Gogoi highlighted that there is a “fast-growing” tendency in the country to challenge laws.
Concluding the conversation, he asserted it is sedition if a speech incites people to overthrow the government.