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UP court acquits Varun of ‘hate speech’ charges

UP court acquits Varun of ‘hate speech’ charges
A local court in Pilibhit gave a major relief to BJP MP and national secretary Varun Gandhi when it acquitted him from all charges in a case of hate speech in Dalchand Mohalla area during the campaigning in his constituency in 2009 general election.

Chief Judicial Magistrate Abdul Qayum exonerated Varun from the charges in the hate speech case which was registered at Pilibhit Sadar Kotwali area. The same court is expected to give its judgement on 1 March next, in a similar case registered at Barkhera police station in 2009.

The court rejected an application moved by one Mohammad Asad Hayat, general secretary of Awami Council for Democracy and Peace, Allahabad, who pleaded that the speech of the BJP leader has hurt the sentiments of minority community and he should be punished. The petition also alleged that the police investigation did not go for forensic test of the original vioce of Varun Gandhi.

However, the CJM court dismissed the petition saying it is not maintainable.

Varun is likely to be freed of charges of the Barkhera case on Friday next.

Both the cases of hate speech against Varun Gandhi fell flat in the court when all the 24 witnesses turned hostile. Varun Gandhi had strongly denied the charges against him and termed the case as an attempt to malign his image during the Lok Sabha elections.

Talking to mediapersons here after the verdict, Varun said that he received justice after three years.

According to prosecution, during the campaigning for 2009 Lok Sabha elections, Varun Gandhi had allegedly given provocative speeches at a meeting at Dalchand Mohalla and at Barkhera in the district. The MP had reportedly made provocative remarks against Muslims in Pilibhit while addressing a poll rally during the 2009 LS poll.

Thereafter, a case was registered against Varun Gandhi under different sections of IPC. The first FIR was lodged on 17 March, 2009, at Barkhera police station for an inflammatory speech during a public meeting on 8 March, 2009.

The second FIR was lodged at Sadar Kotwali on 18 March, 2009, again for allegedly making a speech with communal overtones in Dalchand locality. The then BSP government slapped National Security Act on the BJP leader and he was shifted to Etah jail. However, in May 2009, the NSA was revoked on the direction of the Supreme Court and he was released on bail.

Significantly, Varun in September last wrote to the SP government requesting withdrawal of cases describing them as ‘politically motivated.’ On his request, the government sought a report from the Pilibhit administration on whether the cases could be withdrawn or not in public interest.
MPost

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