Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), 2002

Background and Objective of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA),

– Originated from international conventions and resolutions to combat money laundering.

– Aimed primarily at preventing the laundering of black money generated through international    drug trafficking.

– Enacted by the Indian Parliament under Article 253 to implement international decisions.

Expansion of Scope Beyond Drug Trafficking

– Initial focus on drug money laundering expanded through subsequent amendments.

– Inclusion of offenses unrelated to drug trafficking, such as corruption under the

Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988.

– Amendments broadened the scope, leading to concerns about the law’s original objective        being diluted.

Draconian Provisions and Impact

– Original provisions aimed at dealing with drug traffickers and their financial networks.

– Applied to various offenses beyond drug trafficking, resulting in disproportionate

– Concerns raised regarding fairness, due process, and individual rights under the law.

Controversial Bail Provision

– Section 45 of the PMLA presumes the accused to be guilty until proven innocent.

– Contradicts the fundamental principle of Anglo-Saxon jurisprudence.

– Subject of legal challenges and controversy, with conflicting rulings by the Supreme Court

Judicial Perspectives and Legal Challenges

– Evolution of judicial perspective on bail, from emphasizing personal liberty to upholding the      bail provision.

– Legal challenges and debates about the fairness and proportionality of the law’s application.

– Continuing concerns about the impact of the law on personal liberty and due process.


– While initially aimed at combating drug money laundering, the PMLA’s scope has expanded    over time.

– Draconian provisions and controversial bail provision have sparked debates and legal               challenges.

– Ongoing concerns about the law’s impact on personal liberty and due process, despite             judicial rulings.

About Prevention of Money Laundering Act 2002:

The Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), 2002, enacted in January 2003, aimsto combat money laundering in India with three key objectives:

Prevent and Control Money Laundering: Targets those directly or indirectly involved
in activities connected to the proceeds of crime and projecting it as untainted property.

Confiscate and Seize Property: Seeks to confiscate and seize property obtained from
laundered money.

Address Money Laundering Issues: Deals with any other matters related to money
laundering in India.

Amendments and Updates:

– Amendments made in 2009, 2012, and through Finance Acts in 2015, 2018, and 2019.

– Notably, Section 70 holds individuals in charge of a company’s business liable for
contraventions under the Act.

Inclusion of Political Parties:

– Section 70’s explanation broadens the definition of “company” to include associations of           individuals, potentially encompassing political parties.

– Political parties, though not registered as companies, may fall under the PMLA’s purview          due to this interpretation.

Legal Precedent and Challenges:

– While political parties have faced scrutiny under the Income Tax Act, none have been
booked for money laundering.

– Election Commission faces challenges in addressing accusations against political
parties, lacking clear guidelines or provisions under existing electoral laws.

– Options include suspension or withdrawal of party recognition under the Election
Symbols Order, or de-registration, though limited to specific circumstances outlined in
the Representation of the People Act.


– The potential inclusion of political parties under the PMLA highlights legal ambiguities and         challenges in regulating political finance and accountability.

– The absence of clear provisions poses significant hurdles for the Election Commission in           addressing accusations of money laundering against political entities.

AI’s Impact on Electoral Strategy: Navigating Opportunities and Challenges in India’s 2024 Elections

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is leveraging Artificial Intelligence (AI) to translate
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s speeches into eight languages ahead of the Lok Sabha
elections, potentially making the 2024 elections India’s “first AI election.” This marks a
significant shift in electoral strategy, following the integration of emerging technologies
into India’s electoral landscape over the past three decades.

Evolution of Electoral Strategy:

– Previous elections have witnessed technological advancements, including the use of
phone calls, mass mobile phones, and holograms.

– Social media platforms played a pivotal role in the 2014 elections, earning it the title of
India’s “first social media elections.

– Studies have shown a positive correlation between social media engagement and electoral outcomes, with Mr. Modi emerging as a prominent figure on platforms like
Twitter and Facebook.

– The 2019 general election was dubbed the “first WhatsApp election,” highlighting the
platform’s role in disseminating political messages.

The Rise of AI in Global Elections:

– The 2024 elections are labeled “AI elections” globally, with instances of AI-driven
disinformation campaigns observed in various countries.

– AI-generated robocalls and deepfakes have been used to influence voter behavior
and manipulate election outcomes.

– AI’s role extends beyond disinformation, encompassing voter identification, content
development, and micro-targeting strategies in political campaigns.

Challenges and Responses:

– Concerns regarding AI-driven disinformation have prompted government regulations
and tech companies’ initiatives to combat deceptive AI content.

– However, there are apprehensions about last-minute attempts to deter voter turnout
or create misleading portrayals of candidates, raising uncertainties about the election
process’s integrity.

Future Outlook:

– AI’s influence in elections is expected to grow in the coming years, presenting both
opportunities and challenges for electoral processes worldwide.

– While AI technologies may become more sophisticated, efforts to mitigate their
deceptive effects and safeguard democratic processes are underway.


The convergence of AI and electoral politics poses unprecedented
challenges, necessitating proactive measures to uphold the integrity and fairness of
democratic elections. As AI technologies continue to evolve, policymakers and
stakeholders must remain vigilant to address emerging threats and ensure the
democratic principles underpinning electoral processes are upheld.

Ozone Discovery on Callisto: A Window into Icy Celestial Bodies

• An international team of scientists, including those from India, has made a significant
discovery regarding the presence of ozone on Jupiter’s moon, Callisto, unveiling
insights into complex chemical processes on icy celestial bodies in the Solar System.

• Published in the March 2024 issue of the journal Icarus, the study delves into the
chemical evolution of ‘SO2 astrochemical ice’, primarily composed of sulphur dioxide
(SO2) in the presence of ultraviolet irradiation, shedding light on Callisto’s surface

• By analyzing UV absorption spectra of irradiated ice samples, the researchers
identified a distinct signature indicating ozone formation, corroborated by data from
the Hubble Space Telescope, enhancing our understanding of Callisto’s environment
and potential habitability of icy moons in the Solar System.

• The ozone layer’s importance lies in shielding Earth from harmful ultraviolet radiation,
critical for sustaining life by maintaining stable atmospheric conditions.

• Callisto, one of Jupiter’s largest moons, primarily comprises water ice, rocky
materials, sulphur dioxide, and organic compounds, making it a potential candidate for
extraterrestrial life due to its stable surface and geological inactivity.

• Scientists led by R. Ramachandran conducted experiments at the National
Synchrotron Radiation Research Centre (NSRRC) in Taiwan to recreate Callisto’s
surface conditions, observing ozone formation in sulphur dioxide ice samples under
ultraviolet irradiation.

• The detection of ozone on Callisto suggests the presence of oxygen, crucial for
forming complex molecules essential for life, potentially broadening our understanding
of habitable conditions beyond Earth and providing insights into geological and
atmospheric processes on icy moons.