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Prophet row: Supreme Court grants interim relief to suspended BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma

The Supreme Court on Tuesday gave interim relief to suspended BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma saying no coercive action should be taken against her in any present or future FIRs over her remarks on Prophet Muhammad.

The Bench of Justice Surya Kant and Justice J.B. Pardiwala said, “As an interim measure, it is directed that no coercive shall be taken against Nupur Sharma pursuant to the impugned FIRs.” The bench issued notices to all the states where the FIRs are lodged against Sharma and asked why all the FIRs be not clubbed at Delhi, where the first FIR was registered for her May 26 statement during a TV debate.

For Nupur Sharma, Senior Advocate Maninder Singh said after the July 1 Supreme Court order asking her to approach the High Courts concerned to seek relief on FIRs, a khadim of the Ajmer dargah as well as others have issued serious threats to her life making it impossible for her to go physically to other states.

Justices Kant and Pardiwala considered the serious threat to her life and also Kolkata Police’s lookout circular to order protection for Sharma from arrest in the FIRs. It sought responses of states where FIRs have been lodged against her and sought their responses by August 10, the next date of hearing.

The suspended BJP spokesperson moved the top court of the country with a fresh plea for protection from arrest.

She also requested the Court for the revival of her withdrawn petition, seeking clubbing of FIRs lodged in several states over her remarks on Prophet Muhammad.

Nupur Sharma further requested the withdrawal of adverse remarks that were made by the Vacation Bench of Justice Kant and Justice Pardiwala against her on July 1, when they refused to entertain her plea for clubbing of FIRs, which were registered against her in different states like Delhi, Maharashtra, Telangana, West Bengal, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir and Assam.

The Apex Court bench had criticised Sharma for making controversial comments against the Prophet.

The problem began when Sharma’s remark on the Prophet during a TV debate triggered protests across the country and drew sharp reactions from many Gulf countries. She was subsequently suspended from BJP.

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