The apex Court recently stayed any coercive action against TV news anchor Amish Devgan in multiple FIRs. There FIRs, lodged in several states over his alleged defamatory statements against Sufi saint Khwaja Moinuddin Chisti raised controversies.
A bench that comprised of Justices A.M. Khanwilkar and Dinesh Maheshwari issued notices to those who have lodged criminal cases against the journalist. Also the state governments of Rajasthan, Telangana and Maharashtra where several people lodged cases.
The senior advocate Siddharth Luthra who appeared for Devgan sought the relief. Moreover, he said that Devgan issued a clarification for his tweet. The advocate further justified his client’s action by saying errors do not construe as criminal offences. The allegations were that the journalist in his news show on June 15 had used the term ‘Lootera Chisti’ for the Sufi saint. This invited reactions from the Muslim community—the petition pleas for an interim stay on the investigation against Devgan. Also, to take back the FIRs against him, as it is a ‘small issue’.
Multiple FIRs Filed
People filed one FIRs at Pydhonie police station in Mumbai on the complaint of Arif Razvi, general secretary of Raza Academy. According to him, Devgan allegedly hurt religious sentiments by referring to saint Chisti in derogatory terms. Later, someone registered another FIR against the journalist by the Nanded police under Section 295A (deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting religious beliefs) of the IPC.
Relief By The Apex Court
However, later he tweeted saying that he was actually referring to Muslim ruler Alauddin Khilji and ended up naming Chisti. The Supreme court, which will hear the plea in the first week of July, has ordered that till then no coercive action would be taken. The FIRs and complaints have also been lodged in Rajasthan and Telangana. These also alleged that Devgan had used the word ‘lootera’ for the saint.