On Thursday, an FIR was lodged in Muzaffarpur, Bihar against 49 imminent personalities for writing an open letter to Prime minister Modi on frequent mob lynchings.
The 49 celebrities include historian Ramchandra Guha and filmmakers Mani Ratnam, Anurag Kashyap and Aparna Sen. The FIR is lodged after an order was passed by Chief Judicial Magistrate Surya Kant Tiwari two months ago on a petition filed by local advocate Sudhir Kumar Ojha.
The celebs are booked under sections which include sedition, public nuisance, hurting religious feelings and insulting with an intent to provoke breach of peace.
In their letter to Modi in July the public figures claimed that the “Jai Shri Ram” slogan had become a “provocative war cry” and the reason for a number of lynchings.
“Regrettably ‘Jai Shri Ram’ has become a provocative ‘war-cry’ today that leads to law and order problems, and many lynchings take place in its name,” the signatories had told the prime minister. “It is shocking that so much violence should be perpetrated in the name of religion! These are not the Middle Ages! The name of Ram is sacred to many in the majority community of India. As the highest Executive of this country, you must put a stop to the name of Ram being defiled in this manner.”
Some of the other prominent names who signed the letter are filmmakers Ravathy, Anurag Kashyap, Adoor Gopalakrishnan, Shyam Benegal, author Amit Chaudhuri, scholar Ashis Nandy, and actor Konkona Sen Sharma.
Social media reacts
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Welcome to Naz! ERA people, where sane voices are crushed.
— Nенr_wно™ (@Nehr_who) October 4, 2019
Writing to PM against Mob Lynching amounts to Sedition. Will calling Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi a ‘Traitor’ earn a Padma Award or nomination to Rajya Sabha in New India?
— Tushar (@TusharG) October 4, 2019
FIR has been lodged against celebrities for writing open letter to PM over concern of mob lynchings.
All 7 accused in Pehlu Khan lynching case have been acquitted.
— Millennial Vasooli Bai (@Vishj05) October 4, 2019
Lynching is not a crime but stand against lynching is. Rape is not a crime but complaining about rape is…yes this is new in India and this is New India.
— St. Sinner (@retheeshraj10) October 4, 2019
Rahul Gandhi who was in Wayanad to meet youth protesting against the travel ban on Bandipur National Highway 766 also commented on the increasingly authoritarian state country is going towards.
I met with members of the press in Wayanad, earlier today. I’m attaching a short video with highlights of that interaction. pic.twitter.com/MA9aDNB93V
— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) October 4, 2019