Sedition will not be brought against 49 eminent people who have raised the issue of increasing cases of mob lynching in the country by writing an open letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The SSP of Muzaffarpur in Bihar on Wednesday ordered the closure of the cases filed against these eminent people. It is worth noting that the Central Government was being severely criticized when a case of Sedition was filed against these people for writing an open letter to Prime Minister Modi.
The SSP said, “The sedition case has been ordered to be closed. The request to close the case (closure report) will be submitted to the court as per the procedure.”
However, the SSP did not provide much information in the case. At the same time, police sources claimed that the investigation so far has revealed that the allegations against the accused are mischievous and there is no solid basis in them.
An FIR was registered on October 3 under several sections of the Indian Penal Code. 49 celebrities were charged with Sedition, including filmmakers Mani Ratnam, Anurag Kashyap, Shyam Benegal, actor Soumitra Chatterjee, singers Shubha Mudgal, Aparna Sen, Adoor Gopalakrishnan and historian Ramachandra Guha.
The case was filed following an order by Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) Suryakant Tiwari on a petition filed by local lawyer Sudhir Kumar Ojha two months ago. Ojha had said that his petition was accepted by the CJM on 20 August. After this, an FIR was registered at Sadar Police Station in Muzaffarpur.
49 people wrote an open letter to PM
40 celebrities including Ramchandra Guha, Mani Ratnam, Shyam Benegal, Anurag Kashyap and Shubha Mudgal wrote an open letter to Prime Minister Modi in July this year expressing concern over the incidents of mob lynching and misuse of the Jai Shri Ram slogan in the country. In the letter written to the Prime Minister, it was said that it is being done to incite people across the country on the basis of the slogan Jai Shri Ram. At the same time, there was a demand to take immediate steps to prevent mob lynching of Dalits, Muslims and other weaker sections.
61 people wrote letters in response
Two days later, 61 celebrities also wrote an open letter in response to an open letter from 49 people. In this reply letter, the letter written to the Prime Minister was termed as an attempt to establish selective anger and wrong narrative. Celebrities writing counter letters included writer Prasoon Joshi, classical dancer and MP Sonal Mansingh, actress Kangana Ranaut, Mohan Veena’s pandit Vishwa Mohan Bhatt and filmmakers Madhur Bhandarkar and Vivek Agnihotri.
Then 180 celebrities wrote – ‘How writing a letter is termed as Sedition?’
After this, more than 180 well-known personalities of the country condemned the case of FIR against 49 people for writing a letter to Prime Minister Modi. These include actor Naseeruddin Shah, cinematographer Anand Pradhan, historian Romila Thapar and social worker Harsh Mander.
In a letter written on October 7, the prominent personalities of these cultural fields have asked the question how can it be Sedition to write an open letter to the Prime Minister.
Congress leader Shashi Tharoor also condemned
Congress leader Shashi Tharoor wrote a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi protesting against the registration of an FIR against 49 eminent people who raised the issue of mob lynching. In a letter written on Monday, Tharoor objected to these people being called traitors. Tharoor said, If the dissidents had not shown courage to protest under the British Raj, the history of independent India would have been different.
Tharoor wrote- “We hope that you will support freedom of expression so that the matter of mind does not become a matter of silence.”
He quoted an old speech of PM Modi saying that PM ji, while addressing the US Congress in the year 2016, had called the Constitution of India a holy book. You said that the Constitution of India gives all citizens the right to freedom, expression, speech and equality.
The government has already said – it has nothing to do with the matter
The central government has already made it clear that it or the BJP has nothing to do with this matter. Union Minister Prakash Javadekar had said that it is completely wrong to hold the Modi government responsible for the sedition case against intellectuals and artists. This rumor is being spread by people with vested interests and crumbling gangs. Javadekar said that after a petition, the Bihar court had ordered the FIR to be filed. The central government has not lodged any FIR.
It was also ordered to register an FIR against the person filing the case, Sudhir Ojha.
Sudhir Kumar Ojha has been practicing in Muzaffarpur Civil Court since 1996. In his 23-years career, he has filed 745 PILs. He has sued several eminent personalities from the century superstar Amitabh Bachchan to former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.