The government, buoyed by a favourable verdict from the High Court, had been claiming that everything was done as per the rules and regulations of the university
The Supreme Court on Wednesday tagged with an earlier matter, a petition by a Delhi-based lawyer seeking registration of an FIR against Tamil Nadu Minister and DMK leader Udhayanidhi Stalin, parliament members A. Raja and Tholkappiyan Thirumavalavan for their remarks calling for the eradication of ‘Sanatana Dharma.
Tagging with the already pending matter, Justice Aniruddha Bose heading a bench also comprising Justice Bela M. Trivedi, however, did not issue notice on the plea.
“We have not issued a notice. Let it be tagged. We will see on that day,” the bench said.
The Additional Advocate General o(AAG) of the Tamil Nadu government opposed the plea saying these petitions are ‘publicity interest litigations’.
There are 40 writ petitions filed across the country in different High Courts for publicity, it makes it incredibly difficult for the State, AAG told the bench.
“Everyone filing PILs for publicity, they will go to the media and circulate these,” the bench said.
The Supreme Court on September 22, on a petition by a Chennai-based lawyer, had issued notice to Dayanidhi Stalin and others. The court had sought their reply on the plea seeking action against them for their remarks calling for the eradication of the Sanatan Dharma.
The notice was also issued to the Union Home Secretary.
In the instant case, an advocate Vineet Jindal in an application, has sought registration of an FIR against Stalin and Rajya Sabha MP A Raja for their act of outraging religious feelings, insulting the followers of the Hindu religion and instigating enmity between different groups on the grounds of religion.
The lawyer said he is a follower of Sanatan Dharma and had seen the video recording of Stalin’s statement and news reports relating to Stalin’s speech at an event called ‘Sanatana Abolition Conference’.
“The applicant, being a Hindu and Sanatan Dharma follower, his religious sentiments are hurt by statements made by Udhayanidhi Stalin calling for eradicating Sanatan Dharma and further comparing Sanatan with mosquitoes, dengue, corona, and malaria. His words show his hate towards Sanatan Dharma”, says advocate Jindal in his application.
The application further says, “He is an MLA and a Minister in the Tamil Nadu government and has taken oath to work as per the constitution of our country and must respect all the regions but he intentionally made a provocative and defamatory statement for the Sanatan Dharma with the intent to promote enmity between groups on the grounds of religion.”
Jindal has already made a complaint to Delhi police for the registration of FIR under sections 153A & B, 295A, 298, and 505 but the police are yet to register the FIR though the Supreme Court in its April 28, order has directed all States and Union Territories UTs to register suo motu FIRs in hate speech offences without any complaint being filed.
“Action be taken irrespective of the religion of the maker of the speech so that the secular character of India as envisaged by the Preamble is preserved,” states the application..
On September 5, 262 eminent citizens including former High Court judges and bureaucrats written to the Chief Justice of India, Justice D.Y. Chandrachud urging him to take note of Stalin’s hate speech calling for the eradication of ‘Sanatana Dharma’.
They stated that the Supreme Court had directed the governments and the police authorities to take suo motu action in hate speech cases without waiting for the lodging of formal complaints.