It is a tragedy that the Democrats Party (of Thailand) is pushing the country back to the dark ages where freedom of expression is prohibited, and tries to bring back draconian laws.
The summary of the news in a local daily Matichon said that on 1 October 2008, Mr. Peerapan Saleerattawipak, a Democrat party MP based in Bangkok and the President of the sub-committee prohibiting lese majeste (insulting the monarchy), is proposing a draft law amending the Computer Crime Act (2007) as the law is not very clear.
However, what he added was that those who have committed the lese majeste “crime”, the penalty of 13-15 years imprisonment according to the Criminal law is not enough. In the past, lese majeste law could not be enforced.
In this new draft, the officials of the Ministry of Information and Communication Technology can file complaint directly without the approval from the Minister. If the officials do not do so, they could be charged for misconduct.
The people who hears of the violation can also file the complaint to the police as well. The sub-committee also proposed to increase the penalty to 3-20 imprisonment and fine of 300,000-800,000 baht (US$9000-24200).
This will be proposed to the Parliamentary committee on 2 October and the Parliament later on.
Lese majeste has been used to attack political enemies by different groups including governments and opposition parties.
Recently, it has been used to attack human rights defenders who are critical of the government or of political groups.
And it appears that this Democrat MP wants to bring the repression to another level, which is on the internet.
Earlier, the assistant Secretary General of the party proposed to the Ministry of ICT to shut down 29 websites, 2 of them are independent and non-partisan online news website, Fah Diew Gan and Prachatai.
There you are my people, Amazing Thailand for you.