Uttar Pradesh, Manipur, Kashmir…; Three states with highest number of UAPA prisoners

Nearly 57% of those arrested under the draconian UAPA between 2018 and 2020 were under the age of 30, the Union told Parliament on Tuesday, citing crime statistics compiled by the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB).

In a written reply, junior home minister Nityanand Rai  ruled out any plans to amend the UAPA in the light of recent data about a large number of acquittals and for preventing the harassment of people from marginalized sections due to the use of the draconian law, saying the law had been amended in the past “keeping in view the requirements.”

The draconian anti-terror law allows authorities to designate someone as ‘terrorist’ and detain them without producing any incriminating evidence. It also has stringent requirements for granting bail, which means individuals often spend months, sometimes years, in jail without being found guilty.

Data presented by the Union government showed that over the last three years, 4,690 people were arrested under UAPA across the country. Of these, 2,501 or 53.32% were below 30 years.

BJP governing Uttar Pradesh accounted for the highest number of 1,338 arrests in India over the last three years. As many as 931 or 69.5% of those arrested in UP were under 30.

Following UP, Manipur was second in the list with 943 arrests made under the anti-terror law. Of the total number of those who were arrested, 499 were below the age of 30. Jammu and Kashmir was third with 750 arrests under the legislation between 2018 and 2020. As many as 366 jailed people were under 30.

The MHA said while 4,390 arrests were made under UAPA in the three years since 2018, 1,080 people got bail in the same period while 325 were acquitted and 149 convicted.

The written reply also states that information regarding custodial deaths of persons in custody under the UAPA is not maintained by NCRB.

In July, veteran tribal rights activist Stan Swamy, one of the undertrial prisoners in the Bhima Koregaon case, who was charged under draconian UAPA, had died in custody after being repeatedly denied bail despite his frail health.


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