Amendment of Police Act to prevent cyber crime in Kerala

Approval of the amendment to the Police Act as part of the Prevention of Cyber Crimes has been approved by the Governor. The Police Act of 2011 is being amended, was approved by the last cabinet meeting. The Ordinance was brought to add section 118A. Under the new amendment, anyone can lodge a complaint against a news item against the media and journalists at any police station. As it is a non-bailable offense, the police will have to file a case if a complaint is received. The police will be empowered to register a case in this regard. Arrests can also be made without a warrant. It can result in imprisonment for up to five years or a fine of up to Rs 10,000 or both. The cabinet recommended the addition of Section 118-A to the existing Police Act, providing an imprisonment of up to five years or a fine of up to Rs 10,000 or both to those who produce, publish or disseminate content through any means of communication with an intention to intimidate, insult or defame any person. At the same time, there are allegations that the amendment will hamper media freedom. But it is still unclear how police will find out if the news is fake or true.