An FIR has been filed against Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma for alleged hate speech during a Jan Ashirwad rally in Madhya Pradesh’s Vaishali district earlier this week. The FIR was filed on the complaint of Assam’s leader of Opposition and senior Congress leader Debabrata Saikia at the Nazira Police Station in Sivasagar.
As per the FIR, the Congress leader said that Sarma, in his September 19 speech, suggested that 10, Janpath (Sonia Gandhi’s residence In Delhi) should be burnt.
Speaking to CNNNews18, Saikia noted that the Supreme Court has warned against hate speech by political leaders and has directed all police stations to take suo-moto action against any leader who is involved in such an act.
“It was seen that on Monday, our Chief Minister made a comment at Vaishali Nagar in Madhya Pradesh where he said that if Kamal Nath, who is the Congress president of the state unit, is a Hanuman bhakt, then he should set 10 Janpath on fire like Hanuman set Lanka ablaze,” he said.
“We all know that 10 Janpath is the official residence of senior Congress leader Sonia Gandhi. She is a senior member of the Indian Parliament. She represents Congress and the UPA and she is a woman of honour. So I have filed an FIR today. I strongly condemn such comments against her and I did not expect such words coming from our chief minister,” he added.
The Congress leader further said that Assam Police should take suo-moto action under sections 153A, 153B, 295A, and 505 of the Indian Penal Code as directed by the Supreme Court and take action against Sarma.
The complaint filed by Saikia mentioned that “in a country governed by the rule of law, Sarma has taken electoral rhetoric to its ugliest form. While taunting Kamal Nath, a prominent member of the Indian National Congress about his Hindu identity, Sarma has directly suggested that 10, Janpath should be burnt.”
Saikia further alleged that Sarma has given a clear instigation towards violence and arson.
“By suggesting that the residence of a 77-year-old lady be burnt down, Sarma is not just attacking a prominent face of the Opposition, but he is giving a clarion call towards arson. Such wanton statements coming from a Constitutional authority has the potential of causing misguided persons to resort to violence and potentially cause harm to the residents of 10, Janpath,” the complaint said.
“This is a dear Instigation towards rioting and abetment of arson on the part of Himanta Biswa Sarma and he is liable to be booked under Sections 153 and Sections 115/436 of the Indian Penal Code,” it added.
The complaint further mentioned that though the statement was made in Madhya Pradesh, it was widely circulated over print, electronic, and social media and it is accessible in Assam.
“Accordingly, the effects of the instigation and violent rhetoric are felt within your good office’s jurisdiction. I, therefore, implore you to register an FIR and take necessary action in this regard,” it added.
With inputs from News18