What is NSA Act In India, Punishment? All you need to know

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Reported by Anshika Saxena

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NSA Act: The National Security Act has been in wide discussions very frequently after five accused in Delhi were booked under it. Making arrests of those blamed for the Jahangirpuri Violence in Delhi, the Delhi Police was directed by the Union Minister Amit Shah to take strict action against those who were involved in the communal riot. The NSA act has always been subjected to enormous criticism and therefore, its implementation always creates a sense of alarm. Read all about the National Security Acts, its pinpoints, and the punishments that the charged have to go through here in the subsequently written text.


What is NSA Act In India?

On 23 September 1980, NSA Act or National Security Act was brought by the then Prime Minister of India, Indira Gandhi. The act enables the Government authorities to hold the power to detain a particular accused of they are sure that he/she is a threat to the National Security in India. With help of this act, the government can ensure that Public Order is maintained and there is no peril to the decorum in the country. Not only Indian Citizens can be booked under the Act, but Foreigners can also be detained and expelled from the country if they are accused under NSA Act. The act contains 12 sections. It is applicable in all states and Union Territories of India. Both Central Government and State Government can implement the Act to detain apprehended for preventive measures.

Critical Particulars of the National Security Act

The National Security Act or NSA Act incorporates the following pinpoints:

  • The act can be brought into action by both, Central and State governments.
  • The reasons for accusing through NSA have to be related to the threat to the National Security of the Country.
  • It must be made sure that the law is only summoned in order to preserve Public Law and Order.

Historical Background of the NSA Act

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The NSA Act is a different act and its historical background extends itself to the Rowlatt Bills. Under the Rowlatt Bill, the Defence Act of India, 1915 was passed. As per the act, the state government held the power to detain any citizen and he/she was not allowed to move law courts or even get service of defence lawyers. Due to the same act, Jallianwala Protest was held which led to the Jallianwala Massacre. Later in 1935, the act was focused on grounds that were related to Defensive Measures, External Affairs matters, or Dismissal of Crown procedures in India.

In 1971, Indira Gandhi, the then Prime Minister of India presented the Maintenance of Internal Security Act or the MISA. The act was much likewise to the Rowlatt Act. It was eventually repealed in the year 1977. However, as per Article 22 of the Indian Constitution, enacting Preventive Detention Law is permitted and hence, in 1980, the Indira Gandhi Government passed the law.

Many accused who were booked under the National Security Act have been discharged due to the unavailability of Evidence as per the reports of 1993.

Punishments under the National Security Act

Under the National Security Act or NSA, the following punishments have been listed:

  • A citizen who has been imprisoned under the National Security Act can be detained for 12 months.
  • The booked person can be jailed without being informed of the accusations for a maximum of 10 days.
  • Enabling the National Security Act implies that the accused can definitely appeal in court against the charges made against him/her but shall not receive any assistance from the defence attorney.

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