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Why can’t Yogi Adityanath be prosecuted for 'hate speech', SC asks UP govt

THE ASIAN AGE. | J VENKATESAN
Published : Aug 20, 2018, 8:58 pm IST
Updated : Aug 20, 2018, 9:01 pm IST

The SC issued notice returnable in 4 weeks on special leave petition against Allahabad HC order rejecting plea for action for hate speech.

 In 2008, Asad Hyat and Pervez had filed a petition in Allahabad HC seeking CBI probe alleging that 2007 Gorakhpur riots in were triggered by Yogi Adityanath’s speech. (Photo: File | PTI)
  In 2008, Asad Hyat and Pervez had filed a petition in Allahabad HC seeking CBI probe alleging that 2007 Gorakhpur riots in were triggered by Yogi Adityanath’s speech. (Photo: File | PTI)

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday issued a notice to the Uttar Pradesh government seeking its response as to why Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, should not be prosecuted for his alleged hate speech made at Gorakhpur in 2007.

A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud issued notice returnable in four weeks on a special leave petition against Allahabad High Court order rejecting the plea for action for hate speech. 

The high court had upheld a decision by the Uttar Pradesh government to deny sanction to prosecute Yogi Adityanath in the case. The apex court has now sought a response to the notice within four weeks.

In 2008, Asad Hyat and Pervez had filed a petition in Allahabad High Court seeking an investigation by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). It was alleged that the riots in Gorakhpur in 2007 were triggered by the speech of Yogi Adityanath. Adityanath, who then represented Gorakhpur in Lok Sabha, was arrested and also remanded to police custody for 11 days.

The petition had sought an investigation against Adityanath under sections 302, 307, 153A, 395 and 295 of the Indian Penal Code. The case was then transferred to the CB-CID, which found in the course of an investigation that the BJP leader’s voice in an audio recording was authentic.

The high court, however, said it did not find any procedural irregularity in the order of refusal to grant sanction to prosecute the accused in the case.

The petitioners in their appeal said, “We have videotapes of CM’s speeches and sufficient material for initiation of action against the CM for allegedly instigating the riots by his hate speech” and prayed for setting aside the high court order and a direction to the UP government to initiate action against the chief minister.

Tags: supreme court, yogi adityanath, hate speech, 2007 gorakhpur riots
Location: India, Delhi, New Delhi