The Prevention of Terrorism Act, 2002 (POTA) was an anti-terrorism legislation enacted by the Parliament of India in 2002. The act replaced the Prevention of Terrorism Ordinance (POTO) of 2001 and the Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act (TADA) (1985–95), and was supported by the governing National Democratic Alliance. The act was repealed in 2004 by the United Progressive Alliance coalition.
The bill was defeated in the Rajya Sabha (the upper house) by a 113-98 vote, but was passed in a joint session, as the Lok Sabha (lower house) has more seats. It was only the third time that a bill was passed by a joint session of both houses of parliament. Contents
* 1 Purpose
* 2 Repeal
* 3 Prominent POTA cases
* 4 See also
* 5 References
* 6 External links
The act provided the legal framework to strengthen administrative rights to fight terrorism within India, and was to be applied against any persons and acts covered by the provisions within the act. It was not meant as a substitute for action under ordinary criminal laws.
The act defined what a "terrorist act" and a "terrorist" is, and granted special powers to the investigating authorities described under the act. To ensure certain powers were not misused and human rights violations would not take place, specific safeguards were built into the act. Under the new law, a suspect could be detained for up to 180 days without the filing of chargesheet in court. It also allowed law enforcement agencies to withhold the identities of witnesses, and to treat a confession made to the police as an admission of guilt. Under regular Indian law, a person can deny such confessions in court, but not under POTA.  Repeal
Once the Act became law, many reports surfaced of the law being grossly abused. Claims emerged that POTA legislation contributed to corruption within the Indian police and judicial system, and human...
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