Muzaffarpur (Bihar) 04 Oct 2019: An FIR was lodged on Thursday against nearly 50 celebrities, including Aparna Sen, Ramchandra Guha, Mani Ratnam and Shyam Benegal, who had written an open letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi raising concern over the growing incidents of mob lynching, police said.
The case was lodged after an order was passed by Chief Judicial Magistrate Surya Kant Tiwari two months ago on a petition filed by local advocate Sudhir Kumar Ojha. Based on the CJM order, an FIR was lodged today at the Sadar police station at Muzaffar Nagar.
The letter was written by nearly 50 eminent personalities, including filmmakers Mani Ratnam, Anurag Kashyap, Shyam Benegal, actor Soumitra Chatterjee as well as vocalist Shubha Mudgal in July this year.
“All these 49 signatories of the letter were named as accused in the FIR which blamed celebrities for allegedly "tarnished the image of the country and undermined the impressive performance of the prime minister" besides "supporting secessionist tendencies", says advocate Sudhir Kumar Ojha.
The police said the FIR was lodged under sections of the Indian Penal Code, including those relating to sedition, public nuisance, hurting religious feelings and insulting with intent to provoke breach of peace.
It had said the lynching of Muslims, Dalits and other minorities must be stopped immediately, while stressing that there was "no democracy without dissent". It also noted that ‘Jai Shri Ram’ had been reduced to a "provocative war cry".