They say blasphemy is the biggest crime one can commit. Many theocratic nations have blasphemy laws in place. But does this law has a place in a secular nation like India?? This is the moot question.
Recently Punjab Assembly passed a bill amending IPC Sec 295. Now any disrespect for any religion will land you in jail for up to 10 years. But most interesting part is that a new Section 295 AA has been inserted into the IPC which will exclusively deal with disrespect to Shri Guru Granth Saheb. This has maximum punishment of life imprisonment.
I don’t say that any religion should be disrespected. But of all the things today, do we need blasphemy laws??
Blasphemy laws are prevalent in most nations that are theocratic in nature. There you cannot go against the state religion. Anyone going against the state is slapped with blasphemy law if nothing else can be found against him.
So can we assume that Punjab has turned into a theocratic state with Sikhism as the state religion?? If yes then it’s open defiance of the Constitution of India which makes it a Secular nation. Here no government can make provisions for a particular religion even if it’s majority religion of the area.
What baffles me most is that Punjab is the state which is facing big challenges like debt crisis, farmer distress, drugs etc and all the government does is making laws against blasphemy.
No media has ever taken up this matter at all I don’t know why. This is the most unconstitutional thing I have seen and yet even the opposition is quiet on this matter. Maybe they have electoral compulsions because Punjab is poll bound next year and nobody wants to lose the Sikh vote bank which is the deciding factor in the state.
I hope Judiciary strikes this law down because if it doesn’t then every state will follow the suite. I also hope that our government gets some wisdom and brains so that it doesn’t commit such blunders in future.