The Apex Court on Friday, in an important order, asked the Delhi, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand Police to take action in cases of hate speech without looking at religion of the offenders, Bar and Bench reported.
The court also asked police to take suo-motu cognizance of hate speech incidents without waiting for complaint to be filed.
A bench comprising Justices KM Joseph and Hrishikesh Roy, observing that the “there cannot be fraternity unless different religious communities are available to live in harmony”, asked the three state police to file a report before the Court regarding the actions taken on the hate speech crimes which happened within their jurisdiction.
The top court was hearing petition regarding the hate speeches at various religious congregations in recent times, seeking urgent intervention to stop the “growing menace of targeting and terrorizing the Muslim Community in India”.
“The action should be taken regardless of the religion of the speaker. Any hesitation to act as per the directions would be viewed as contempt of court,” the court warned police.
“We feel the court is charged with the duty to protect the fundamental rights and also protect and preserve the constitutional values in particular the rule of law and the secular democratic character of the nation”, the bench said in its order.
Earlier, representing petitioner Shaheen Abdullah, senior advocate Kapil Sibal told the bench that BJP leader Parvesh Verma indulged in hate speech by calling for economic boycott. “We have filed many complaints. This Court or administration never takes action except seeking status reports.These people are participating in events on daily basis,” Sibal said.
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