SC criticises sec 66a of IT Act


Sec 66A of IT act lacks guidelines, arrests made over social media posts prone to abuse: SC

The Supreme Court on Tuesday observed that Section 66A of the Information Technology Act, which empowers police to make arrests over social media posts, apparently lacked guidelines on when such power can be exercised and that somebody’s “annoyance” was enough in certain cases for invoking the law.

What is 66A of IT Act ?

66A. Punishment for sending offensive messages through communication service, etc.

Any person who sends, by means of a computer resource or a communication device,—

(a) any information that is grossly offensive or has menacing character; or

(b) any information which he knows to be false, but for the purpose of causing annoyance, inconvenience, danger, obstruction, insult, injury, criminal intimidation, enmity, hatred or ill will, persistently by making use of such computer resource or a communication device,

(c) any electronic mail or electronic mail message for the purpose of causing annoyance or inconvenience or to deceive or to mislead the addressee or recipient about the origin of such messages,

shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years and with fine.

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