The Centre for Independent Journalism says the amended act violates the principle of presumption of innocence.
It is collecting signatures for a petition against a new section of the act, which it says violates the “innocent until proven guilty” principle.
“We are urging concerned netizens to sign a petition against the new Section 114(a) in the Evidence Act,” said the media watchdog’s executive director, Masjaliza Hamzah, in a media statement.
“We are pleased to announce that the number of people who have signed the petition has reached over 1,600 since we launched it on May 31, 2012.”
At the time this article was uploaded, 1,698 people had signed the petition.
Masjaliza said the new section threatened freedom of expression because the assumption of guilt would cause fear among those using the Internet as a space for free discussion.
To make matters worse, she added, hackers and other cyber criminals would have a free hand because the people who would be hauled to court would be computer users who had been hacked.
CIJ will submit the petition to Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Nazri Aziz once it has collected 5,000 signatures. It hopes to reach the target during the next sitting of Parliament, which begins this Monday.
The petition is posted here. Twitter users can follow up on the issue by using the hashtag #stop114a.