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Sedition Law section 124A IPC UPSC Notes

What is Sedition? Section 124A of IPC? –Why it is needed?- Relevance of Kedarnath Case – issues with Sedition law (Prelims, Mains GS2)

Sedition Law

What is Sedition Law

  • Sedition laws were enacted in 17th century England
  • lawmakers believed that only good opinions of the government should survive
  • law was originally drafted in 1837 by Thomas Macaulay
  • However, when the Indian Penal Code (IPC) was enacted in 1860, it was suddenly and inexplicably omitted.
  • Section 124A was inserted in 1870 by an amendment
  • Sedition is now punishable by the Indian Penal Code under Section 124A. (IPC).

Section 124A IPC:

  • It defines sedition as an offence committed when "any person by words, either spoken or written, or by signs, or by visible representation, or otherwise, brings or attempts to bring into hatred or contempt, or excites or attempts to excite disaffection towards the government established by law in India".
  • A non-bailable offence
  • Punishment -  ranges from imprisonment up to three years to a life term, to which a fine may be added.
  • Person charged under this law is barred from a government job


  • Reasonable Restrictions-under Article 19(2)
  • Maintaining Unity & Integrity
  • Maintaining Stability of State


  • Recalls the colonial era - Sedition was used by colonial administrators to imprison people who opposed British policies.
  • The Constituent Assembly refused the inclusion of sedition in the Constitution.- believed that it would restrict freedom of speech and expression
  • Disregarding Supreme Court’s Judgement- Kedar Nath Singh vs State of Bihar case 1962, limited application of sedition to “acts involving intention or tendency to create disorder, or disturbance of law and order, or incitement to violence”.
  • Democratic Values being suppressed.
Sedition Law 124 A



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Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam: Sedition Law section 124A IPC UPSC Notes
Sedition Law section 124A IPC UPSC Notes
What is Sedition? Section 124A of IPC? –Why it is needed?- Relevance of Kedarnath Case – issues with Sedition law (Prelims, Mains GS2)
Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam
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