Magsaysay awardee booked for speech against Savarkar

Aligarh, Jan 22 (IANS): Magsaysay Award winning human rights activist Sandeep Pandey has been booked for allegedly making inappropriate comments against Hindutva ideologue Veer Savarkar.

The complaint has been filed by the national Vice-President of Hindu Mahasabha, Rajiv Kumar, who has claimed that Sandeep Pandey made the comments while addressing anti-citizenship law protesters at the Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) on Sunday.

The FIR has been lodged at the Civil Lines police station under Sections 153 A (provocation with intent to cause riots) and 505 (1)b (inciting public or community to commit an offence) of the Indian Penal Code.

In his address, Pandey had said that people 'dividing Hindus and Muslims' were the ones who had done the same thing during British Raj.

He had claimed that 'masked goons' hired by some right wing organisations had disrupted peaceful protests in Jawaharlal Nehru University, Jamia Millia Islamia and AMU, and they were the real culprits behind the violence in these institutions.

Meanwhile, talking to IANS, Pandey said that the BJP government in Uttar Pradesh had made it a habit of targeting him for all that was wrong in the state.

"I am now used to being targeted. The government did not allow me to hold a candle march for Kashmiri people after the abrogation of Article 370. I was put under house arrest. Earlier this month, I was prevented from going to Ayodhya. These are pressure tactics to crush the democratic rights of citizens to protest peacefully," Pandey said.


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