Chief Minister of Rajasthan, Ashok Gehlot has expressed serious concerns on the sedition case against the 49 celebrities who wrote an open letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. An FIR was lodged in Muzaffarpur earlier in October against the 49 celebrities for writing an open letter to the Prime Minister raising concern over the growing incidents of mob lynching.
The sedition case against 49 prominent personalities of the country is not only a matter of grave concern but also very unfortunate. Our intellectual community has strongly condemned the move and there is much resentment among them.— Ashok Gehlot (@ashokgehlot51) October 9, 2019
The case was lodged after an order was passed by Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) Surya Kant Tiwari two months ago on a petition filed by local advocate Sudhir Kumar Ojha. The FIR was lodged under sections of the Indian Penal Code, including those relating to sedition, public nuisance, hurting religious feelings and insulting with an intent to provoke breach of peace.
“The CJM had passed the order on August 20, accepting my petition upon the receipt of which an FIR was lodged today at the Sadar police station here,” Ojha was saying as quoted by news agency PTI.
The 49 celebrities including Historian Ramchandra Guha, Film Maker Mani Ratnam and Anurag Kashyap, Actors Konkona Sen Sharma and Aparna Sen had written an open letter to the Prime Minister which said that 'Jai Shri Ram' had been reduced to a 'provocative war cry' and has become a reason for the growing cases of lynching. The letter demanded to put a check on incidents of 'lynching of Muslims, Dalits and other minorities', citing NCRB reports. The letter further reiterated the demands of immediate action against those propagating religious identity-based hate crimes. "What action has been actually been taken against the perpetrators? We strongly feel that such offences should be declared non-bailable, and that exemplary punishment should be meted out swiftly and surely," the letter read.