Government modifies controversial section of IT Act
The UPA Government on Thursday decided to modify the controversial section 66A of the Information Technology Act after the Supreme Court asked for Attorney General G.Vahanvati to present himself to explain what steps the government was taking to prevent its misuse.
The government decision came hours after the apex court accepted a public interest litigation (PIL) seeking amendment to the Information Technology Act in the wake of its alleged misuse in recent few cases.
A bench headed by Chief Justice Altamas Kabir said that it was considering to take suo motu cognisance of recent incidents and wondered why nobody had so far challenged the particular provision of the IT Act.
Taking the case on urgent basis, the bench agreed to hear the PIL filed by a Delhi student Shreya Singhal later today.
However, the government has itself modified rules under Section 66(A).
As per reports, the government has issued an advisory to states on the procedure to be followed while implementing the Act. The new rules mandate a prior approval from the Deputy Commissioner of Inspector General of Police level before the Station House Officer (SHO) can register complaints under the section.
The government has taken the step in wake of growing incidents of alleged miscue of the Act. Two recent cases in Palghar near Mumbai highlighted the urgent need to relook at the Act.