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Delhi LG approves prosecution of Arundhati Roy under UAPA for ‘provocative’ speech: Officials | India News



NEW DELHI: The lieutenant governor of Delhi on Friday gave prosecution sanction against author Arundhati Roy and a former professor in Kashmir under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) for a ‘provocative’ speech she delivered at an event in 2010, according to officials from Raj Niwas.
The FIR against Roy and former Central University of Kashmir professor Sheikh Showkat Hussain was registered based on the orders of the Court of Metropolitan Magistrate, New Delhi.
As of now, there has been no response from either Roy or Hussain regarding the matter.
The complaint that led to the registration of the FIR was filed by Sushil Pandit, a social activist from Kashmir, on October 28, 2010.
An official from Raj Niwas confirmed on Friday, “Delhi Lt Governor VK Saxena has sanctioned the prosecution of Arundhati Roy and former Professor of International Law in Central University of Kashmir, Dr Sheikh Showkat Hussain, under section 45 (1) of Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act in the case.”
In October of the previous year, the LG had also sanctioned their prosecution under section 196 of CrPC for committing offenses punishable under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, including 153A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, etc., and doing acts prejudicial to maintenance of harmony), 153B (imputations, assertions prejudicial to national-integration), and 505 (statements conducing to public mischief).
What is the case?
Sushil Pandit, a social activist from Kashmir, filed a complaint with the SHO of Tilak Marg against various individuals involved in delivering provocative speeches at a conference organised by the Committee for the Release of Political Prisoners (CRPP) on October 21, 2010, at LTG Auditorium, Copernicus Marg. The conference, titled “Azadi – The Only Way,” allegedly discussed and propagated the separation of Kashmir from India, with speeches that were provocative and potentially detrimental to public peace and security.
Following the initial complaint, Pandit filed a complaint under section 156(3) of the CrPC before New Delhi’s Metropolitan Magistrate. As a result, an FIR was registered on November 29, 2010, based on the magistrate’s order dated November 27, 2010. The charges included sedition, promoting enmity between different groups, and making assertions prejudicial to national integration. The accused were also charged with public mischief under Section 13 of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA), 1967.
Who were present at the event?
Among those present at the conference were Arundhati Roy, Syed Ali Shah Geelani (chairman of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat), S A R Geelani, and Maoist sympathizer Varvara Rao, who is also an accused in the Bhima-Koregaon case. Syed Ali Shah Geelani and Arundhati Roy allegedly propagated that Kashmir was never part of India and was forcibly occupied by the Indian Armed Forces, urging for the independence of Jammu and Kashmir from India.
The complainant’s complaint, dated October 28, 2010, included statements made by some of the speakers during the conference. Transcripts of speeches given by Roy, SAR Geelani, and SAS Geelani were also submitted. Two exhibits, a CD and a DVD, were sent for forensic examination at the CFSL’s computer division on December 1, 2017, and were found to be logically functional and physically undamaged.
Delhi police had sought prosecution sanction under Section 196 CrPC for offenses under Sections 153A, 153B, 504, 505 of the IPC and Section 13 of the UAPA, 1967 against Roy and Hussain.
The notice by the Delhi LG in October previous year, explained the charges, saying that Section 13 of the UAPA deals with punishment for unlawful activities, while Sections 153A and 153B of the IPC address the promotion of enmity between different groups and making assertions prejudicial to national integration. Sections 504 and 505 deal with intentional insult to provoke breach of peace and statements conducive to public mischief. Section 196 of the CrPC pertains to the prosecution for offenses against the State and criminal conspiracy to commit such offenses.





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