The Supreme Court said the hate speech pulled out by the minister cannot be vicariously attributed to the government even by the means of collective responsibility
New Delhi: The Supreme Court said the statement pulled out by the minister cannot be vicariously attributed to the government even by the means of collective responsibility.
Justice SA Nazeer headed the five-judge bench in the supreme court and said no other restrictions other than the ones constituted under article 19(2) of the constitution can be imposed on the right to freedom of speech.
Restrictions under Article 19(2) are exhaustive said the apex court. The Supreme Court claimed that the minister’s statement cannot be vicariously attributed to the government.
“Fundamental under article 19(1)a can be exercised against other instrumentalities other than the state” the bench comprising of Justice BR Gavai, AS Bopanna, V Ramasubramanium said.
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Justice BV Nagarathna who was also part of the bench added freedom of speech and expression is a much needed right so that citizens are well informed and educated on governance.
She added that hate speech disfigures the foundational values of society while creating and unequal ground whilst attacking citizens belong to varied backgrounds especially “in a country like us “Bharat.”
The judgement followed a question of whether restrictions could be imposed on public functionary’s right to freedom of speech and expression.
Furthermore, Justice Nagarathna added that hate speech targets the root of equality and fraternity and said to enable a check on this fundamental duties can be used to monitor disparaging speeches and promoting harmony among citizens.
“Parliament may enact a law against hate speeches disparaging remarks against fellow citizens. It is for political parties to control their members from crossing limits for free speech. Citizens can approach the court for hate speech by filing criminal or civil cases,” Justice Nagarathana added.
#BREAKING Justice BV Nagarathna dissents from majority to hold that statements made by a Minister, which are traceable to affairs of govt or to protect the govt, are vicariously attributable to the Govt and if they are disparaging, the Govt is vicariously liable.
— Live Law (@LiveLawIndia) January 3, 2023
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