The Supreme Court said on Wednesday it was looking to put in place an administrative machinery to deal with hate speeches across the country while making it clear that it cannot handle each and every such matter as it will lead to a virtual flood of cases.
A bench of Justices Sanjiv Khanna and SVN Bhatti said the apex court has already defined hate speech and the question now is of implementation of its directions.
"We can't deal with individual aspects. If we start dealing with individual cases, it will lead to flooding of cases. We want to put infrastructure or administrative machinery in place. If there is any breach in that, then you may approach the concerned high court," said the bench.
"We cannot take pan India cases as it will be impossible for us to handle. In a country as big as India, there will be problems but the question is whether we have enough administrative machinery in place to take action wherever required. Society must know that if you indulge in it then there will be some state action," the bench said.
The top court also issued notices to the states of Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Nagaland and Gujarat over non-appointment of nodal officers to tackle hate speech.
The top court had earlier said defining hate speech is complex but the real problem in tackling it lies in the implementation and execution of law and judicial pronouncements.
On October 21 last year, the top court had directed Uttar Pradesh, Delhi and Uttarakhand to crack down on those making hate speeches, calling them shocking for a country that is religion-neutral.
Holding that the Constitution of India envisages a secular nation, the court had directed the three states to promptly register criminal cases against offenders without waiting for a complaint to be filed.