Manithaneya Makkal Katchi founder M.H. Jawahirullah on Thursday condemned the Union government for “gross misuse” of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) and the National Investigation Agency (NIA).
Addressing a protest organised by his party here, he said an Act like the UAPA, which made it extremely difficult for those arrested to even get a bail, had no place in a democratic society. He said such an argument was not only put forward by his party but also eminent judges and the civil society. He said the Act made the accused prove their innocence instead of asking the prosecution to prove the guilt.
Stating that the NIA was formed as an elite agency, Mr. Jawahirullah claimed it was now being used to investigate petty cases such as elopement and cattle theft, primarily to target minorities. He said this was evident from the sharp rise in the number of cases taken up by the organisation for investigation and the conviction rate remaining abysmally poor. He said the NIA was also encroaching on the powers of the investigating agencies of the State governments by transferring cases from the latter to the former.
Governors criticised During the protest, the party also condemned the intervention of Governors, particularly Tamil Nadu Governor R.N. Ravi, on the effective functioning of the State governments. The Governors are arbitrarily withholding assent to legislation passed by the State governments, he said.
Leaders from coalition parties, Communist Party of India (Marxist), Communist Party of India, Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi, and Tamizhaga Vazhvurimai Katchi took part in the protest.