Bilaspur (Chhattisgarh), April 13
In a relief to BJP national spokesperson Sambit Patra and another party leader, the High Court of Chhattisgarh has quashed FIRs (First Information Reports) registered against them in May last year.
Notably, two FIRs were registered against Sambit Patra with separate police stations in Raipur and Durg and one case against BJP leader from Delhi Tejinder Pal Singh Bagga in Kanker district on charges of promoting enmity between different groups and hurting religious feelings. The cases were registered under sections 153A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, etc), 500 (punishment for defamation), 505(2) (statements conducing to public mischief) of Indian Penal Code on the basis of complaints lodged by Youth Congress leaders.
The single bench of Justice Sanjay K Agrawal quashed the three FIRs and observed that police officers cannot investigate non-cognizable offences under sections 500 and 501 of the IPC without leave of the court.
In the complaints, Youth Congress leaders have alleged that in a tweet posted in May last year, Sambit Patra had leveled false accusation against former Prime Ministers Jawaharlal Nehru and Rajiv Gandhi in connection with the Kashmir issue, 1984 anti-Sikh riots and Bofors scam. Later, the tweet of Sambit Patra was retweeted by Bagga.
In the wake of the registered FIRs, the lawyers of Sambit Patra and Bagga have filed petitions in the HC seeking quashing of the FIRs.