Apply more stringent sections in FIR against Bajrang Muni Das: CJP to UP DGP CJP’s petition urges expansion of complaint to include rape threats

19, Apr 2022 | CJP Team

Pointing out that the criminal complaint lodged against ‘Mahant’ Bajrang Muni Das is limited and should actually contain more serious and comprehensive sections of the law, Citizens for Justice and Peace (CJP) has urged in a separate complaint with the Director General of Police, Uttar Pradesh, that this be expanded and the investigation be non-partisan.

The ‘Mahant’ Bajrang Muni Das from Khairabad, Uttar Pradesh has been booked for repeatedly making hate speeches and issuing rape threats to Muslim women outside a mosque in Sitapur on Hindu New Year on April 2, 2022.

The said video may be viewed here:

 

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Ironically however, key sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) like Sections 153, 153A, 153B, 295A, 354A, 503, 504 and 505 have not been applied to the hate offender. Besides Section 67 of the Information Technology Act, 2000 and Sections 3 and 4 of the Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act, 1986 are missing in the police registered FIR.

In its detailed communication, to Mr. Mukund Goel, DGP, UP made today, CJP has urged that only such a comprehensive complaint will ensure both a non-partisan and in-depth investigation as also a prosecution.

As observed and noted from a viral video on Twitter, Bajrang Muni Das, the head of Maharshi Shri Lakshman Das Udasin Ashram, was seen openly threatening Muslim women with sexual assault while addressing supporters from his vehicle parked outside a mosque in Sitapur. Das’s audience comprised people who were part of a procession on the occasion of Hindu New Year. Much like many such processions being taken out recently, they made it a point to halt outside a mosque where Das spoke into a microphone connected to loudspeaker and said, “If you tease a single [Hindu] girl, I will abduct your daughters and daughters-in-law from your house, and rape them in public.” The vile rape threat was filmed on video and went viral online shortly thereafter.

Even though Das has been arrested under section 298 (utterance or gesture in the sight of that person or places with the deliberate intention of wounding the religious feelings of any person), 354 (sexual harassment, making sexually-coloured remarks) and 509 (using word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), CJP, through its petition, has brought to the DGP’s attention, several sections of the law that are not included in the First Information Report (FIR) which will impact the quality and thoroughness of the investigation but also the gravity with which these are taken by law enforcement (police) and thereafter the judiciary.

Following is the list of the following legal provisions:

Indian Penal Code 1860:

  • Sec 153: Wantonly giving provocation with intent to cause riot—if rioting be committed; if not committed
  • Sec 153A: Promoting enmity between different groups on ground of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, etc., and doing acts prejudicial to maintenance of harmony
  • Sec 153B: Imputations, assertions prejudicial to national integration
  • Sec 295A: Deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs
  • Sec 354A: Sexual harassment and punishment for sexual harassment
  • Sec 503: Criminal intimidation
  • Sec 504: Intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of the peace
  • Sec 505: Statements conducing to public mischief

Violations of Information Technology Act, 2000

  • Sec 67: Punishment for publishing or transmitting obscene material in electronic form

Violations of Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act, 1986

  • Sec 3: Prohibition of advertisements containing indecent representation of women
  • Sec 4: Prohibition of publication or sending by post of books, pamphlets, etc., containing indecent representation of women

Also expressing concern over the delay in the so-called Mahant’s arrest, and the hate speeches made in the presence of a police officer, CJP has urged the DGP UP to consider the seriousness of the offence as done by the Uttarakhand High Court (March 2022) in the case of Jitendra Narayan Tyagi alias Waseem Rizvi vs. State of Uttarakhand, wherein the Court rejected the bail application of serial hate offender, Jitendra Tyagi and held that Hate Speech didn’t fall under the purview of the fundamental right to Freedom of Speech and Expression granted under Article 19 (1) (a) of the Indian Constitution. The Court further stated, “A balance has to be struck between the right to individual liberty and the interest of society,” adding, “No right can be absolute, and reasonable restrictions can be placed on them.”

The copy of order dated March 8, 2022 may be read here:

 

To bring forward the gravity of the situation, CJP has brought to the DGP’s attention several hate instigating videos by Bajrang Muni Das:

1. In a shocking video, Das is seen threatening violence against Muslims in the presence of a police officer stating, “Jo bhi Hindu ki taraf aankh uthaakar dekha toh har hind uke ghar se laathi nikalne chahiye…..agar humlog bate rahenge toh yeh humko kaat te rahenge.” In the said video, he claims that he has been reincarnated by God only for the destruction of Muslims. He firmly states that he will exhort Hindus to a point where even if he is killed by the ‘Jihadis’, the Hindus will remain riled up for the next 50 years so much so that Muslims won’t even be able to raise their eyes at Hindus. He encourages the crowd to commit violence if there is any brawl with the Muslims.

The video accessed from Twitter on April 9, 2022 may be viewed here:

2. In order to prove that this blatantly abusive behaviour is spearheaded with impunity by right-wing extremists and socio-culturally influential members of the majority community, CJP points out to another viral video where saffron clad Swami Anand Swaroop is seen defending Bajrang Muni by showing his support to the rape threats made by him and threatening the Sitapur police of the repercussions to be faced if Das was to be arrested. In the said video, he even urges UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath to protect hate offender Bajrang Muni at all costs.

The video accessed from Facebook on April 9, 2022 may be viewed here:

3. CJP has also highlighted a video where Bajrang Das can be seen claiming outright, “Even if I die, I will leave so much heat in the Hindus of this place that they will turn Khairabad into Sri Ramnagar. And I say this openly, if you kill one Hindu, I will kill 10 Muslims.” He further adds, “If you trap one Hindu girl in ‘Love Jihaad’ then we will trap 10 Muslim girls in ‘Love Sanatan’ (a purported opposite of Love Jihad).” Acknowledging the presence of the police personnel at the said event he said, “There are people from the law and administration present here but I want to say this openly – if any wrong is done to our women, then just like they (Muslims) don’t follow the constitution and follow Quran, we will also not follow the constitution.”

The video accessed from Twitter on April 8, 2022 may be viewed here:

Highlighting the fact that National Commission for Women (NCW) has already taken cognisance of the offence, CJP has urged the DGP UP to do the following:

  1. To immediately investigate the claims made by Bajrang Muni Das, under the Indian Penal Code, the Police Act, in order to maintain peace and order and make the investigations public.
  2. To further strengthen the FIR registered by the UP police against Bajrang Muni Das and ensure that relevant sections of the Information Technology Act and Indian Penal Code and others, that are conspicuous by their absence, are included.
  3. For the Uttar Pradesh Police to closely monitor online and offline intimidation and abuse especially directed by persons in positions of social, economic and political power against all marginalised sections of Indians, including religious minorities.
  4. For the Uttar Pradesh police to ensure that data on such monitoring is made public digitally, and that progress in this case is also visible and made public electronically and digitally.

The complaint may be read here:

 

Image Courtesy:siasat.com

Related:

Hate offender Bajrang Muni Das finally arrested 11 days after making rape threats

Bajrang Muni Das openly threatens Muslim women with sexual assault

 

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