The SAARC (Suppression of Terrorism) Act was enacted to affect the South Asian Association Regional Cooperation Convention on Suppression of Terrorism and the related matters or incidental.

Team Law Community
May 12, 2021


The SAARC (Suppression of Terrorism) Act was enacted to affect the South Asian Association Regional Cooperation Convention on Suppression of Terrorism and the related matters or incidental. On behalf of the Government of India, a Convention was signed at Kathmandu on 4 November 1987. India ratified it on 2 August 1988 by stating that it should have provision to affect terrorism and matters related to it. The main objective for the enactment of the Act was:

  • To punish the criminal even if the crime is committed outside India but within SAARC.
  • It identifies offences like Terroristic offences and prevents offenders from taking shelter under national or international law.

Important Relevant Sections

Section 1- Short title, extent and application:

Section 1(1) states that this Act is called as SAARC Convention (Suppression Terrorism) Act, 1993.

Whereas Sec.1(2) talks about the applicability of the Act, it states that this Act applies to the whole of India, according to section 6 of the Act, if the crime falls under this Act but committed outside India then also SAARC would be applicable.

Section 4– Hostage-taking:

Section 4(1) states that if someone force or threaten to use power or to kill or injure, seizes or stops a person’s movement, and the person does everything to avoid the warning or threat given by that person to happen that is called hostage-taking by the person giving the danger or caution.

Section 4(2) states that the person committed the offence of hostage-taking should be punished for the imprisonment, which may extend to ten years and also liable for fair.

Section 5 – Provisions as to extradition act:

Extradition Act is applicable in whole of India. In relation with SAARC Convention, if the offence committed by the person falls under Section 4(1) of the Convention or any other crime which is given under Article I of the SAARC Convention would not be considered as the offence of political nature. Therefore the Extradition Act would not be applicable.

Section 6 – Offences committed outside India:

Section 6(1) and (2) states that if the offence committed outside India but falls under section 4(1) of Article I of the SAARC Convention, by the person who is a citizen of India on high seasor any other place or the person who is on an Indian ship or aircraft but not the citizen of India or the person who is not the citizen in the country where SAARC is applicable or member of the SAARC Convention. The person would be dealt as if the offence had been committed within the jurisdiction of India.

Section 7 – Previous Sanction necessary for the prosecution:

Section 7 basically talks about the Sanction required to trial a person who has committed the offence under Section 4(1) of Article I of the SAARC Convention. According to Section 7 of the Act if a person has committed any crime mentioned in the above provisions, then a previous Sanction is required to start the prosecution by Central Government under this section, and it should be deemed as if the Sanction is granted under section 188 of CrPC.

Section 8 – Protection of action taken in good faith:

Section 8 states that if a person or Central Government has done something in good faith or done something with the intention of doing the Act according to the provision of the Act for the damaged that had been caused or can be caused, in that case, they would not be charged, or no legal proceedings or no prosecution shall be initiated against them.

ImportantRelevant Articles

Article I:

Article I states the offender cannot claim for extradition if:-

  • The offences are murder, kidnapping, hostage-taking, manslaughter, assault or the crimes which include firearms, explosives or any other dangerous material used to kill or harm a person seriously or harm the property.
  • The crimes fall under the Convention for Suppression of Unlawful Seizer of Aircraft, signed on 16 December 1970 at Hague.
  • The crimes that fall under Convention for Suppression of Unlawful Act, against the Safety of Civil Aviation.
  • The violations that falling under the Convention on Prevention and Punishment of Crimes against Internationally Protected Persons, including diplomatic agents.
  • A person attempts or conspires to try any of the above-mentioned offences.

Article II:

This Article states that for extradition if the members of SAARC decide to include any serious offence, which should not be considered as political offence or offence of political nature.

Article IV:

This Article talks about the situation where the plea of extradition has been made, and it states that if the person is accused of committing any offence mentioned under Article I & II of the Act within the territory of any Contracting State and refuse to extradite the accused person, then the authorities have to file the case as soon as possible so that the prosecution shall initiate and the decision must be in the same manner as if the offence is committed under the State’s law.

Article VI:

This Article states that if the offender is found whose territory the offence had been committed after receiving the plea for extradition should take the critical decisions as soon as possible so that the offender should be presented for prosecution or for extradition. And the State filing the plea for extradition shall be notified about the decisions.

Article VII:

Article VII talks about the cases where the plea of extradition has been made is unjust or injudicious, or the request has been made is not in good faith. In such a case, the offender should not be extradited.

Article IX:

Article IX states that the SAARC Convention is open to signed by the members of SAARC in Kathmandu. Ratification can be made, but the RatificationRatification should be submitted to Secretary-General of SAARC.

Article XI:

Article XI talks about the duties and responsibilities of the Secretary-General of the SAARC, and it states that Secretory- General should inform the members of SAARC and submit instruments of RatificationRatification, and also provide the certified copied of the device to the member states of the Convention and to notify them about the date of the enforcement of the Convention.