Withdrawal of controversial Kerala Police Act amendment requires issuing new ordinance, say experts

Though the state government has decided to put on hold the controversial Kerala Police Act amendment, a final decision on the withdrawal has not been decided as an ordinance was issued. Government took political decision to withdraw the law. The recommendations on methods to withdraw will be forwarded to law department from home department.

There are 4 ways in which it can be withdrawn, say experts. The first one is to issue a new ordinance. In this case, the cabinet should recommend to the Governor on a new ordinance. But the emergency situation should be explained. Governor had signed the ordinance considering the urgency. Signing another ordinance withdrawing the earlier one would affect the dignity of the Governor’s post.

The second way is to bring a resolution in the Assembly. The Assembly session will be convened in January. But until the ordinance is withdrawn, the new amendment will be inforce. Police will be compelled to register cases under the new ordinance until it is withdrawn.

The government can also wait for a natural disposal of the ordinance. The guideline is that an ordinance should be framed as law within 42 days on convening the Assembly. If not, the ordinance becomes invalid. But, in the Assembly session the Police Act amendment may invite severe criticism. So this option is unlikely.

The last one that experts point out is to bring a new law for social media. The police can be instructed not to implement the ordinance and a new bill can be passed in the Assembly to check abuse and assault through social media. But framing a new law can be done only after considering the Supreme Court order that relaxed the IT Act pointing out freedom of expression.

Courtesy: Aneesh Jacob, Mathrubhumi News