Sedition law in Bangladesh
The Penal Code, 1860 in its section 124A defines the offence of sedition. According to this section, anyone who by spoken or written words, or by signs, or by visible representation, or otherwise, brings or attempts to bring into hatred or contempt, or excites or attempts to excite disaffection towards the lawful Government can be accused of committing sedition.
The punishment prescribed varies from imprisonment up to three years to life imprisonment, with fine or without it.
It is to mention that the expression "disaffection" under this section includes disloyalty and all feelings of enmity.
However, any comment expressing disapprobation of the measures of the Government with a view to obtain their alteration by lawful means, without exciting or attempting to excite hatred, contempt or disaffection, does not constitute an offence under this section.
Even comments expressing disapprobation of the administrative or other action of the Government without exciting or attempting to excite hatred, contempt or disaffection, do not constitute an offence under this section.
Section 108 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1898 provides an option to have
security for good behaviour from persons disseminating seditious matter. According to this section, the District Magistrate, or any other Executive Magistrate specially empowered by the Government, may require any person – accused of disseminating of any seditious matter the publication of which is punishable under section 123A or section 124A of the Penal Code – to show cause why he should not be ordered to execute a bond, with or without sureties, for his good behaviour for such period, not exceeding one year, as the Magistrate thinks fit to fix.
However, no proceedings can be taken under this section against the editor, proprietor, printer of publisher of any publication registered under, and edited, printed and published in conformity with, the provisions of the Printing Presses and Publications (Declaration and Registration) Act, 1973, with reference to any matters contained in such publication except by the order or under the authority of the Government or some officer empowered by the Government in this behalf.