he Amendment Act 2019 (AA) amends the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967. The Act provides special procedures to deal with terrorist activities, among other things.
Features of the Act
- Under the 1967 Act, the central government may designate an organisation as a terrorist organisation if it:
. commits or participates in acts of terrorism
. prepares for terrorism
. promotes terrorism, or
. is otherwise involved in terrorism.
. The AA additionally empowers the government to designate individuals as terrorists on the same grounds.
- Under the 1967 Act, an investigating officer is required to obtain the prior approval of the Director General of Police to seize properties that may be connected with terrorism. The AA adds that if the investigation is conducted by an officer of the National Investigation Agency (NIA), the approval of the Director General of NIA would be enough for seizure of such property.
- Under the 1967 Act, investigation of cases may be conducted by officers of the rank of Deputy Superintendent or Assistant Commissioner of Police or above. The AA additionally empowers the officers of the NIA, of the rank of Inspector or above, to investigate cases.
- The 1967 Act defines terrorist acts to include acts committed within the scope of any of the treaties listed in a schedule to the Act. The Schedule lists nine treaties, including the Convention for the Suppression of Terrorist Bombings (1997), and the Convention against Taking of Hostages (1979). The AA adds another treaty to the list. This is the International Convention for Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism (2005).