Rajasthan High Court Dismissed Bail Application to Dargah Cleric, Arrested for Raising Slogans ‘Sar Tan Se Juda’ Against Nupur Sharma

Rajasthan High Court Law Insider

Aastha Thakur

Published on: 14 October 2022 at 18:13 IST

The Rajasthan High Court dismissed the bail plea of a cleric working in Ajmer Sharif Dargah who was found to be guilty of provoking people and raising the slogan ‘Sar Tan Se Juda’ in a strike rally in relation to alleged statements made by BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma.

The bench comprising Justice Sameer Jain refused to grant bail to Syed Gohar Hussain Chisti, on the ground that his release could affect the law-and-order situation in the state.

The Court, while observing the facts of the case, noted that Chisti was permitted for the protest by way of a “peaceful procession“, still arranged for a microphone and loudspeakers and even raised the communal slogan while addressing around 3000 people. The speech was also provoking, malicious, and motivated by hate speech.

Furthermore, the court added that, Moreover, the applicant is alleged to have been actively involved in the incident as the mastermind. In contravention of the categorical directions of the police authorities, the law and order was put in jeopardy and communal discomfort was caused throughout the country, including certain unfortunate incidents at Amravati and Udaipur,”

Case Against Chisti

The claims were brought against Gauhar Chisti, the Ajmer Dargah cleric, that he, along with others, on June 17 in a protest rally raised alleged slogan [gustakhi-e-nabi ki ek hi saza, sar tan se juda sar tan se juda (Beheading is the only punishment for those who insult Prophet Muhammad)]. It was alleged that Chisti was firing back against the alleged religious comments made by suspended BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma against Prophet Mohammad.

He was arrested under Sections 506, 504, 188, 149, 143, 117, and 302/115 of the Indian Penal Code.

The contention was by defendant counsel that Nupur Sharma had hurt the sentiments of the religious community and the protest against it was a peaceful procession carried out with lawful permission.

On asking questions over his involvement in Udaipur and Amravati murder cases happened earlier this year. He denied his role in those cases, clearly stating that as the case registered for raising slogans, the case does not attract the provisions of Section 302/115 of the IPC.

The counsel appearing for the State argued that the video clips of the alleged slogan were circulated at online platform which somehow led to the unfortunate incidents at Udaipur and Amravati, wherein the victim were decapitated in the name of religious hatred propagated through slogans and therefore, the FIR is also booked under Sections 115 r/w 302 of IPC.

The court listening to the submissions of the both the party, refused to grant bail to Chisti.

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