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‘…don’t spoil atmosphere with hate speeches’: SC on Jitender Tyagi bail plea

New Delhi, May 12, 2022- The Supreme Court on Thursday said people should stay together peacefully and enjoy life, as it issued notice on a bail plea of Jitender Tyagi — formerly known as Wasim Rizvi — arrested in connection with hate speeches at the Hardiwar Dharam Sansad held in December last year.

Tyagi, a former Chairperson of UP Shia Waqf Board, had converted to Hinduism recently.

A bench of Justices Ajay Rastogi and Vikram Nath said: “Stay together peacefully, enjoy life…” as it issued notice to Uttarakhand government on Tyagi’s plea.

During the hearing, the bench emphasised on the need to sensitise the speakers, so that they don’t make speeches, which spoil the atmosphere.

Tyagi moved the apex court challenging the Uttarakhand High Court order, which rejected his bail plea in March.

At the outset, the bench queried Tyagi’s counsel, what is a Dharam Sansad?

As senior sdvocate Sidharth Luthra, representing Tyagi, submitted that from the videos of the event, he could only guess, people wearing bhagwa (saffron) clothes were giving speeches, the bench said such speeches spoil the atmosphere.

Luthra contended that people of the nation have to be sensitised and pointed out his client has been in custody for close to 6 months.

As the state government counsel opposed Tyagi’s bail plea, the bench queried whether further investigation was required, as charge sheet has already been filed in the matter.

It also asked what was the maximum punishment in the case registered against Tyagi. The state government counsel said the maximum sentence was 5 years, since the speeches were given at a religious place. However, Luthra said the ‘Dharam Sansad’ was not a religious place, and the maximum sentence was 3 years.

After hearing arguments, the top court issued notice on Tyagi’s bail plea to the Uttarakhand government and scheduled the matter for further hearing on May 17.

In January this year, the Uttarakhand Police arrested him for inflammatory speech at the event in Hardiwar.  (Agency)

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