Sedition charges to be dropped against the celebs who wrote open letter to PM

A small victory against the frivolous sedition charges

celebs against lynching

In an interesting turn of events in the sedition case against 49 celebrities, Bihar police have closed the sedition case passing the order that the allegations against the accused are out of “mischief” and “lacked substance”.

The order for the closure of the case is passed by Muzaffarpur Senior Superintendent of Police Manoj Kumar Sinha. He also ordered the police to file a prosecution against c

omplainant Sudhir Kumar Ojha in court for filing a false case.

The officials at the police headquarters said the investigation so far has found the allegations in the petition against the accused to be out of “mischief” and “lacked substance”. The complainant was neither unable to produce supporting documents or evidence nor even the alleged letter written by the 49 persons, which may support his claim of commission of any offence. Based on these findings the case is found to be false.

The police will file a case against complainant Sudhir Kumar Ojha under sections 182 and 211 (relating to false information or false charge of offence) for lodging a false case.

Muzaffarpur based lawyer Sudhir Kumar Ojha has a habit of filing cases against famous celebrities and politicians for frivolous reasons. He is known to be an attention seeker to gain fame and to help his practice.

But this time, his PR stunt backfired, when the case received huge condemnation from all across the board. Within days after the FIR was lodged by him, over 180 personalities from the academic and cultural community wrote an open letter to the PM.

The signatories, which also included Naseeruddin Shah, cinematographer Anand Pradhan, historian Romila Thapar and activist Harsh Mander, writers Ashok Vajpeyi and Jerry Pinto, academician Ira Bhaskar, poet Jeet Thayil, author Shamsul Islam, musician TM Krishna and filmmaker-activist Saba Dewan, promised they will continue to speak up against silencing of “people’s voices”.

“Can this be called an act of sedition? Or is harassment by misusing the courts a ploy to silence citizens’ voices?” the letter read.

“All of us, as members of the Indian cultural community, as citizens of conscience, condemn such harassment. We do more: we endorse every word of the letter our colleagues wrote to the Prime Minister.

“This is why we share their letter here once again and appeal to the cultural, academic and legal communities to do the same. This is why more of us will speak every day. Against mob lynching. Against the silencing of people’s voices. Against the misuse of courts to harass citizens,” the letter added.

Some times you have to fight fire with fire

To mark their protest against the sedition charges on the letter writers and on PM Modi’s continuing silence on the issue of mob lynchings, the student organisation of CPI, SFI and DYFI, wrote and post 1.5 lakh copies of the same open letter to PM Modi. They also dared the BJP to book them in similar cases.

Both the SFI and the DYFI printed hard copies of the original letter, on which their members wrote their names and added their signatures before sending them by ordinary post to the Prime Minister’s Office in New Delhi.

In a report by telegraph “This campaign is against the anti-democratic BJP, which filed cases against some of our best-known and most respected intellectuals and artistes who had only made a point without insulting anyone or any party.”

He added: “The case against our intellectuals is part of a larger plan to destroy our Constitution and its values. By denying the rights enshrined in the Constitution, the BJP and the RSS are planning to silence those who speak against their fascist policies.

 

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June 2024
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