Raghav Chadha, a Rajya Sabha member of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), staged a dharna outside of Parliament on Friday. Chadha demanded that the IPC section relating to sacrilege be changed and made stricter in order to give the most severe punishment to those accused while he sat in front of the Gandhi statue.
The AAP MP had also issued a Suspension of Business notice under Rule 267 earlier in the day in the Rajya Sabha to talk about law changes.
But soon after the Rajya Sabha chairman refused to talk about the sacrilege, he staged a dharna.
Raghav Chadha informed the chairman in writing that the work outlined in Rule 29 should be suspended while the House addresses the rising instances of sacrilege.
‘For us, there is nothing more important than the respect of our Guru Sahiban. We can sacrifice our lives, but they cannot tolerate the sacrilege of Guru Sahib,’ Raghav Chadha said.
In Punjab, there have been several instances of attempted sacrilege over the past few years.
A copy of the Guru Granth Sahib was desecrated in Bargari in 2015. Then a copy of the Hindu text Bhagwat Gita was destroyed in Ludhiana. There have also been reported instances of Muqaddas Quran sacrilege.
The AAP MP said that, ‘The punishment prescribed for this offence in sections 295 and 295A of the IPC related to sacrilege is very low that the morale of the perpetrators of such a serious crime has become very high. Therefore, there is a need to make this law stricter by amending it soon, so that those who dare to commit this sin can get life imprisonment or even harsher punishment. Consequently, this House should consider amending Section 295 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).’