NEW DELHI: Think twice before calling a person from the Northeast by “derogatory” names such as “chinki”, “Chinese” or making any other derogatory remark. It may land one in jail for up to five years, besides being non-bailable, according to a proposal which the Home Ministry is considering.
Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Friday said his ministry is considering the proposal made by a high-level committee that looked into the attacks on people from North East in Delhi and some other parts of the country.
A bill may be brought for amending the Criminal Law (Amendment) Act 2014 for safety and security of the people of the Northeast in Delhi and others parts of the country, he said.
“We are examining the proposal and may add two provisions in the Indian Penal Code by amending the Criminal Law (Amendment) Act 2014,” he said at a press conference.
The Bezbaruah Committee, in its report, has noted that there was the “most common demand” from people from North Eastern region was to make words like ‘Momos’, ‘Chinkis’, Chinese’, ‘Chichi Chu Chu’ or any other derogatory remarks relating to race, culture, identity or physical appearances to be made punishable.”
It has recommended a provision in Section 153 of IPC to provide for imprisonment up to five years with a fine to “whoever, by words either spoken or written or by signs or by visible representations or otherwise attempts or promote to attempt on the ground of race or place of origin or such other grounds relating to racial features or to racial behaviour and culture or to racial customs or participates in such activity intending to use criminal force or violence.”
The provision for imprisonment will be there even if any person is “likely to cause fear or alarm or a feeling of insecurity amongst the members of that racial groups”.