9 Dec 2021 2:17 PM GMT
The Allahabad High Court last week granted protection from arrest to a man who allegedly delivered a speech asking the Muslim youths to take revenge in their own way if the Supreme Court pronounces 'Ram Mandir Judgment in favor of one community'.The Bench of Justice Devendra Kumar Upadhyaya and Justice Saroj Yadav noted that the speech rendered by the petitioner does not reflect or appeal to...
The Allahabad High Court last week granted protection from arrest to a man who allegedly delivered a speech asking the Muslim youths to take revenge in their own way if the Supreme Court pronounces 'Ram Mandir Judgment in favor of one community'.
The Bench of Justice Devendra Kumar Upadhyaya and Justice Saroj Yadav noted that the speech rendered by the petitioner does not reflect or appeal to the youth to indulge in any criminal act by rebelling or by using violence.
Speaking to Live Law, the Counsel for the petitioner, Arshad Ahsan Siddiqui confirmed that the allegation against the petitioner was that he asked Muslim youths to take revenge if Supreme Court's Ayodhya Verdict comes in favor of one community. He, however, denied the allegations made against his client.
The case before the Court
Essentially, the Court was dealing with the plea of one Muhammad Saghir Khan who had moved the court challenging an FIR registered against him under Sections 124-A, 153, 153-A, 153-B, 505 (1)(b)(c) of IPC
As per the FIR, the allegations are that Khan on October 27, 2019, made a statement in a meeting of Muslim youths that the Muslims did not have any hope from the present Government.
Allegedly, he also said that in case the judgment [on Ram Mandir] of the Supreme Court is rendered in favour of one community then the Muslims should be ready to take steps to counter the same and that they should take revenge in their own manner and that such messages should be circulated through WhatsApp messaging.
Against this backdrop, the Submission of the counsel for the petitioner was that he was being unnecessarily harassed by the police and the impugned F.I.R. was one such step.
He submitted before the Court that on the day the impugned F.I.R. was lodged, the petitioner had received a notice under section 107/116 of Cr.P.C. pursuant to which he submitted personal bond and two sureties of a heavy amount of Rs.5 lakh.
It was also claimed that again in December 2019, he was again issued a notice under section 107/116 of Cr.P.C. pursuant whereof the petitioner had again submitted a personal bond and two sureties of an amount of Rs.1 lakh.
At the outset, the Court noted that in the allegations made in the F.I/R, prima facie nothing appeared which could suggest that the petitioner in the meeting addressing the Muslim youths incited the person present there to create a disturbance of public peace by taking recourse to violent means.
In this regard, the Court also referred to the judgment of the Supreme Court in the case of Vinod Dua vs. Union of India and others LL 2021 SC 266 wherein the scope of section 124-A of Indian Penal Code had been considered by the Court.
The High Court observed that the Apex Court had opined that the tendency of such an offence [under section 124-A IPC] is to incite the people to rebel by violent means and that any act within the meaning of section 124-A will be constituted as an offence if it has the impact to subverting the Government by bringing that Government into contempt or hatred, or creating disaffection against it by violence.
Examining the facts of the case on the anvil of the observations made by the Apex Court in the Vinod Dua case, the High Court came to the conclusion that the alleged speech rendered by the petitioner does not reflect or appeal the youth to indulge in any criminal act by rebelling or by using violence.
Accordingly, having regard to the overall facts and circumstances of the case, the Court directed that till the next date of listing the petitioner shall not be arrested in connection with the aforesaid case.
Case title - Muhammad Saghir Khan v. State Of U.P. Thru. Prin. Secy. Home Deptt.Lko.& Ors.
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