Sunday, December 10, 2023

Hate speech against UP CM: Allahabad High Court refuses to quash FIR lodged against Bhim Army leader

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The Allahabad High Court has dismissed a petition seeking quashing of an FIR lodged against a Bhim Army leader who has been accused of making hate speech against Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, Yogi Adityanath and Bageshwar Baba, Dhirendra Shastri.

The Division Bench of Justice Ramesh Sinha and Justice Narendra Kumar Johari passed this order while hearing a petition filed by Deepak.

The petition has been filed by the petitioner- Deepak, seeking a writ of certiorari to quash the impugned F.I.R dated 23.02.2023 registered as F.I.R/Case under Section 505 (2) of I.P.C, Police Station Shivratanganj, District Amethi with a further prayer to stay the arrest of the petitioner in pursuance of the impugned FIR.

It has been argued by the counsel for the petitioner that the petitioner, who is working as Operator in Richa Global Export Pvt Ltd, has been falsely implicated in the case with malafide intention.

He further argued that earlier on 22.02.2023, an FIR i.e FIR has been lodged against the complainant/respondent no 4 with an allegation that respondent no 4 through his Facebook I.D made hate speech against ex- Chief Minister of U.P, namely, Bahen Kumari Mayawati.

The said FIR was lodged by Vijay Kumar Gautam, President of 178 Tiloi Vidhan Sabha Kshetra, Tiloi, District Amethi.

He further argued that no offence is made out against the petitioner and the impugned F.I.R has been lodged against the petitioner just for harassment with oblique motive, hence, the impugned F.I.R is liable to be quashed.

A.G.A, on the other hand, opposed the prayer for quashing of the F.I.R and submitted that the petitioner is named in the FIR.

She further submitted that it is alleged in the impugned F.I.R that on 20.02.2023, petitioner, who is officer of Bhim Army through his Facebook ID made hate speech against Hon’ble Chief Minister of U.P, Yogi Adityanath Ji and Bageshwar Baba, Dhirendra Shastri Ji.

She also submitted that impugned F.I.R discloses cognizable offence against the petitioner, hence, the writ petition is liable to be dismissed.

The Court observed that,

After having heard submissions advanced by counsel for parties and perused the impugned F.I.R, it is apparent that the petitioner had made a derogatory and disrespectful comments on Chief Minister of U.P, Yogi Adityanath Ji and Bageshwar Baba, Shri Dhirendra Shastri. Moreover, from the allegations made in the F.I.R as a subject matter of investigation and at this stage it cannot be said that no offence, whatsoever is made out against the petitioner.

In view of the ratio laid down by the Apex Court in Neeharika Infrastructure Private Limited vs State of Maharashtra: AIR 2021 SC 1918 and on perusal of the impugned F.I.R and material on record, it transpires that, prima facie, a case is made out against the petitioner.

“The submissions made by the counsel for the petitioners relate to disputed questions of facts, which cannot be adjudicated upon by this Court in jurisdiction of under Article 226 of Constitution of India.

From the perusal of the F.I.R, prima facie, it cannot be said that no cognizable offence is made out, hence no ground exists for quashing of the F.I.R or staying the arrest of the petitioner”, the Court further observed while dismissing the petition.

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