New Delhi: The Delhi High Court directed Wednesday the police to take ‘conscious decision’ with respect to lodging of FIRs against alleged hate speeches by three BJP leaders in connection with the CAA violence and convey by Thursday.
The three BJP leaders are – are Kapil Mishra, Anurag Thakur and Parvesh Verma.
A bench of Justices S Muralidhar and Anup J Bhambhani took on record the assurance by special commissioner Praveer Ranjan that he will sit Wednesday itself with the Delhi Police Commissioner Amulya Patnaik and view all video clips and take a conscious decision on lodging of FIRs.
The high court also issued notices to the parties concerned on the plea filed by the Centre seeking to be impleaded in the case.
The matter will be heard further Thursday.
The bench of Justices Muralidhar and Talwant Singh was hearing a petition, filed by civil rights activist Harsh Mander which sought FIRs to be registered against the three BJP leaders. The plea said that their hate speeches had resulted in the Delhi riots which began Sunday and so far more than 20 people have been killed.
Solicitor general Tushar Mehta and Justice Muralidhar engaged in an animated debate during the hearing, most notably when the former said that the police cannot do anything at the moment because the situation is delicate. Mehta informed the bench that the FIRs will be ‘registered at an appropriate stage’.
Justice Muralidhar responded, saying, “Which is that appropriate stage? After the city has burnt down?” Mehta reportedly shot back that the city is not burning, and stating ‘it is only a few areas’ which have been affected.
“How many more lives have to be lost, how much property has to be destroyed?” Justice Muralidhar asked, to which SG Mehta requested the court not to get ‘angry’. “This is not anger, this is anguish,” the judge responded.
The court also asked the police why there was a delay in registering the FIR. The bench said that such an action could send the wrong message and that people are not deterred from using incendiary slogans.
Meanwhile Mishra, who gave Sunday what many have termed ‘hate speech’ remained defiant even Wednesday. He said that he had done nothing wrong and hot out at those demanding his arrest.
“Those who did not consider Burhan Wani and Afzal Guru as terrorists are calling Kapil Mishra a terrorist. Those who go to court to get Yakub Memon, Umar Khalid and Sharjeel Imam released are demanding the arrest of Kapil Mishra. Jai Shri Ram,” the politician tweeted in Hindi this morning.
It should be stated here that even a number of BJP lawmakers like Gautam Gambhir have demanded that Mishra be arrested. The former Indian cricketer had said Monday, that irrespective of who the person may be, if someone is found guilty of making provocative speeches, the person should be ‘arrested immediately’.
In a separate development Wednesday, the National Security Advisor (NSA) Ajit Doval held a meeting with senior officials of the Delhi Police and took stock of the situation after communal violence killed 22 people in northeast Delhi. The meeting was conducted at the office of the Deputy Commissioner of Police (northeast).