Modi says communal violence bill a disaster,writes to PM Manmohan Singh

The Prime Minister said that the government sought the cooperation of all segments.

Written by Express News Service | New Delhi | Published: December 5, 2013 12:29 pm

After Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa,Gujarat chief minister and BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi has written to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh opposing the Communal Violence Bill.

“Communal Violence Bill is ill-conceived,poorly drafted and a recipe for disaster!” Modi revealed in his tweets about his letter to the PM opposing this Bill.

BJP’s prime ministerial candidate in fact has also alleged that the timing of the fresh push by the Congress-led UPA government for this Bill smacked of political vote bank considerations.

“Timing of Communal Violence Bill is suspicious. Political considerations and vote bank politics rather than genuine concerns are guiding it,” Modi said in his tweet. In this context,Modi has argued that its provisions may end up achieving adverse results than intended.

“The proposed legislation would further divide Indian society on religious and linguistic lines,” Modi’s personal website suggests him to have told the Prime Minister arguing that the proposed Bill will only get “religious and linguistic identities would become more reinforced and even ordinary incidents of violence would be given a communal colour thus giving the opposite result of what the Bill intends to achieve”.

Gujarat chief minister has also objected to be proposed legislation on the grounds that it is in violation of the federal structure of the Constitution.

“Communal Violence Bill is clear violation of India’s federal structure. Centre is busy forming laws on matters that are in the State List,” he has argued asking,“If a legislation has to be implemented by the States,should it not be legislated by the States?” AIADMK chief Jayalalithaa,too,is learnt to have voiced her objection to the Bill on this ground as well.

In this backdrop,her has demanded Prime Minister to seek a wider consultation with stakeholders before proceeding further with this legislation. “Urged PM to seek wider consultation with the states & various stakeholders of the Bill before proceeding any further on a Bill like this,” Modi said in his twitter. Modi has. alternatively,suggested Prime Minister that central government should limit itself to “prepare a ‘Model Bill’ and circulate it among the various State Governments for their consideration”.

As for the specifics of the legislation,Narendra Modi’s personal website claimed that he has highlighted various “operational issues” and “shortcomings” to the Prime Minister to register his objections against the proposed Prevention of Communal Violence (Access to Justice and Reparations) Bill,2013.

His website suggests that he has raised the vagueness of certain provisions,an issue highlighted by Jayalalithaa as well,particularly highlighted the provision regarding “hostile environment” in the legislation to underlined that it was “vague and open to misuse”. Incidentally,Jayalalithaa,too,had highlighted her reservations against the provision regarding “hostile environment”.

Additionally,Modi has wondered whether the proposed legislation seek too introduce the “concept of ‘thought crime’ in the context of the Indian criminal jurisprudence” and suggested that the provisions do not conform to the Evidence Act.

In his letter,Modi’s website claim that Gujarat chief minister has also opposed the provision (Section 10B) in the proposed Bill that seeks to hold senior bureaucracy accountable for lapses during the communal violence situations saying that provisions “can adversely impact the morale of our law and order enforcement agencies” and will make them “vulnerable to political victimization” and argued that it would prompt senior officer to escape their responsibility to shun criminal liability. “This provision is absurd as it tries to deal with incompetence by trying to criminalize it,” Modi’s website quotes him to have argued to the Prime Minister lamenting the “tendency to find legislative solutions to all problems”. Modi,however,has welcomed the establishment of a Communal Violence Reparation Fund proposed in the Bill.

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