Syed Amin Jafri in Hyderabad
Former Union law minister Ram Jethmalani said on Friday that he might contest the upcoming presidential election.
Speaking at a meet-the-press organised by the Andhra Pradesh Union of Working Journalists, Jethmalani said: "I am seriously thinking of contesting the poll. I will not contest only to score a point. I will contest if I am sure of making a fight out of it."
Jethmalani, a member of the Rajya Sabha, called on Telugu Desam Party president and Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu, fuelling speculation that he could be seeking the TDP's support for his candidature.
Describing the Prevention of Terrorism Act as a 'necessary but draconian' legislation, Jethmalani vowed to fight its misuse through a panel of eminent jurists.
"No criminal law can ever eradicate crime, but POTA will act on the subconscious of people who would otherwise be attracted to terrorism. The very nature of the law being draconian keeps moderates, but not the hardcore elements, away from terrorism," he observed.
Jethamalani termed the arrest of Jammu & Kashmir Liberation Front leader Yasin Malik as the first known instance of the misuse of POTA. He felt the police should not have arrested Malik without verifying the facts.
"The misuse of a law can be checked by a sensitive judiciary, vigilant press and responsible legislators. In the 1980s, the roots of terrorism were mainly within our country. But now the situation has changed and POTA is necessary, but we should be vigilant and see that it is not misused," he remarked.
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