“Yati Narsinghanand welcomed by his supporters with chants of Jai Shri Ram after his release. He got bail within 30 days of his arrest in Haridwar Hate Speech case in which he explicitly asked Hindus to buy advanced weapons to k!ll Muslims, videos of which are publicly available.” …. Video can be seen in the link below:
Yati Narsinghanand welcomed by his supporters with chants of Jai Shree Ram after his release. He got bail within 30 days of his arrest in Haridwar Hate Speech case in which he explicitly asked Hindus to buy advanced weapons to k!ll Muslims, videos of which are publicly available. pic.twitter.com/yu79c6IFFj
— Kaushik Raj (@kaushikrj6) February 17, 2022
YatiNarsinghanand, who leads the powerful Dasna Devi temple in Uttar Pradesh, was granted bail by the Haridwar SessionsCourt in a case registered against him for his alleged offensive and derogatory remarks on Muslim women. It is pertinent to note that he was in judicial custody for two cases; the first was for making calls for genocide at the HaridwarDharamSansad9December 2021) and the other is the current case. He was granted bail in the former by the Sessions court and the same judge has granted him bail in this case where he has made derogatory remarks against Muslim women and that too on similar grounds.
In the case on hand, Narsinghanand had made objectionable/ derogatory and indecent comments on social media that were directed towards the Muslim women. After his comments went viral on social media, there was widespread condemnation. Subsequently, he was charged under Section 295A (deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs) and Section 509 (word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).
Narsinghanand was seen on the video saying that, “the Muslims have captured everything, that they (Muslims) have joined BhartiyaJanta Party (BJP), that they (Muslims) have captured RashtriyaSwayamsevakSangh (RSS) and for the service of Islam, their women can act as the mistresses of any one and that they (Women) are their greatest strength”.Pursuant to the registration of FIR, he was in judicial Custody since January 16. He thereafter his bail plea before the Court of Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM), Haridwar.
The bail plea was rejected by CJM Mukesh Arya on January 19, stating that,
“Despite being issued a Section 41A CrPC notice [notice of appearance before a police officer] in the past, he (Narsinghanand) is repeatedly making comments to incite communal passions and spoiling harmony/atmosphere through social media and there is a strong possibility of serious crimes being committed in the area.”
Narsinghanandthen approached the Additional Sessions and District Court, Haridwar against the bail order delivered by CJM, Haridwar. In the order passed by Sessions Judge on Bail plea of Narsinghanand, the Additional Sessions and District Judge Bharat Bhushan Pandey ordered his release on February 15, overturning the earlier judgement delivered by the Court of the CJM, Haridwar, on January 19 where he was denied bail.
Justice Bhushan Pandey granted Narsinghanand bail noting that the offenses reported to have been committed by him are punishable up to 3 years of imprisonment and also the past criminal cases are not yet proven and the cases are under trial. Hence the Court granted the bail to YatiNarsinghanand.The Sessions Court had allowed bail application, subject to furnishing two sureties of Rs 50,000 and a personal bond of the same amount.The bail has been granted to Narsinghanand with certain conditions:
The Court has asked him to take undertaking in front of magistrate Court about not repeating any of such similar acts, he is been charged for, in future.
- Narsinghanand will also have to respond to summons by the investigating officer in the case.
- Narsinghanand will not intimidate the witnesses in the case directly or indirectly
- Narsinghanand will not go to abroad without the Court’s permission, and is directed to submit the passport, if any, to the investigating authority.
Dharma Sansad Case
It may also be recalled that the controversial priest had already secured bail in the Haridwar Dharma Sansad case, where he along with others had allegedly issued calls for Muslim genocide. After being charged under Section 153A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, etc., and doing acts prejudicial to maintenance of harmony) and 295A (deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs) of the IPC, he was granted bail on February 7 by judge Bharat Bhushan Pandey of the Haridwar Sessions Court. The Sessions Court had allowed bail application in that case, subject to furnishing two sureties of Rs 50,000 and a personal bond of the same amount.
Jail is exception, bail is rule
The Bail Provision Under Criminal Procedure Code, 1973 states in section 437(1)(ii) that, “…. A person shall not be released if such offence is cognizable offence (an offence for which a police officer may arrest without warrant) and had previously convicted of an offence on two or more occasions of a cognizable offence punishable with three years or more….”
The reasons noted down while allowing the bail that the punishment is up to 3 years is somewhere contradicting the above mentioned legal provision which might have been overlooked by the Court. Also there is report of the person doing the same act repeatedly which should have been taken seriously by the Court. The country has already witnessed the repercussions of hate speeches that have culminated into communal violence in the past such as the 2002 Gujarat riots, the Muzaffarnagar riots and so on. The courts while making certain decisions need to be cognizant of the history while granting bail in such serious offences, especially when it comes to repeat offenders..
Young Activists, SagarGorkhe, Ramesh Gaichor and JyotiJagtap were arrested and taken into physical custody in a two-year old case.Republic TV editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami was held over a 2018 abetment-to-suicide charge.The treatment meted to the two in the hands of the judiciary was starkly different. While Goswami’s case was listed for urgent hearing right up to the apex court and he was released on bail within six days, the Kabir Kala Manch activists have been struggling to get a single proper hearing before the Bombay high court. Activists and journalists arrested in the past years have struggled either in securing regular hearings, or in having their basic human rights protected, or both while offenders like YatiNarsinghanand and MilindEkbote (accused in BhimaKoregaon riots) continue to roam scot free on bail.
The order may be read here: