The Bombay High Court recently granted interim protection from arrest to a man held by Mumbra Police Station earlier this year for allegedly posting disrespectful content on Facebook against Dr BR Ambedkar.
On September 23, a single-judge panel of judge Sandeep K Shinde heard the plea of ââa certain Abdul Rahim Abdul Gani who, according to the police, had sent a message on his Facebook account which allegedly disrespected Ambedkar, which the Complainant held in high esteem being a member of a listed caste.
The complainant filed an FIR against Gani for offenses punishable under Articles 295A (willful and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings or any class by insulting his religion or religious beliefs) of the Indian Penal Code, Article 67 (publication or transmission of obscene material in electronic form) of the Information Technology Act and under the provisions of the Scheduled Castes and Tribes (Atrocity Prevention) Act 1889.
The accused’s lawyer Tahera Abdul Rashid Qureshi argued that he had been falsely implicated, being an RTI activist and a whistleblower. The lawyer added that an unknown person created a Facebook account in his name and sent a post to that account, so he disowned said account and the post.
The court noted that the investigator (OI) asked Senior Inspector, Cyber ââCell, Thane to verify the Internet Protocol (IP) address and other details and submit a report.
Lawyer AD Khamkhedkar representing the state, on instructions from officials, argued that the report should be received within one month.
“Therefore, unless it is established whether or not this was a fake applicant’s account, it would not be appropriate to deny him protection,” he argued.
The court asked the IO to take action to block the Facebook account in question to prevent further dissemination of the objectionable message.
The judiciary notified the respondent and postponed a new hearing to October 25. .