The archaic law was enforced by the British Raj to quell any rebellion against their Imperial rule in 1870.
The Congress party has promised to its voters that if the party is voted back to power it will do away with the Sedition Law. Social activists and international advocacy groups like Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International and others claim that the sedition law is archaic and draconian. It was introduced by the British in 1870 to quell rebel against their governance. The activist state that this law has no place in modern India. And is being used by the ruling party to silence any voice of dissent. And is often used to target political opponents of the ruling party.
Congress has accused the ruling party of trying to suppress dissent with this archaic sedition law. It has been used on students and social activist who has voiced against the injustice of the government. The Congress party states the sedition law has been "misused and, in any event, become redundant".
BJP leaders have strongly reacted against this promise. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley retorted "The Congress does not deserve even a single vote for promises like doing away with sedition law". UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has called this promise made by Congress as “Shameful”. Even Prime Minister Narendra Modi has stated that this shows that Congress is with the traitors.
BJP has questioned the removal of sedition law as it will strip powers of troops in the war zone. To which the Congress party has suggested a new law amendment to counter growing terrorism. It will amend a law that will empower the armed forces battling terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir and at the same time enable protection of human rights.
Sedition law and sedition charges were brought to question in 2016, with the arrest of Kanhaiya Kumar and Omar Khalid and other JNU students. And this arrest and the infamous anti-national slogans in JNU campus initiated sparked off debates on free speech across India.