The Supreme Court on Monday refused to quash the criminal action initiated against TV anchor Amish Devgan for making derogatory remarks against Sufi saint Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti on air.
A bench of Justices AM Khanwilkar & Sanjiv Khanna however, clubbed all FIR’s filed against Devgan and transferred them to Ajmer.
As many as 7 FIRs have been filed in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra & Telangana against Devgan on the basis of alleged derogatory remarks that he made against Sufi Saint Moinnuddin Chisti on his prime-time show, telecast on June 15.
While hosting a debate on June 15 on PIL’s regarding the Place of Worship Special Provision Act on his show ‘Aar Par’, Amish had called Khwaja Moinuddin Chisthi, better known as Khwaja Ghreeb Nawaz, an “attacker” and “lootera”.
Devgan’s petition filed through Advocate Vivek Jain sought quashing of the FIRs which have invoked sections 295A (Deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs), 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), 505 (Statements conducing to public mischief) and 34 (Acts done by several persons in furtherance of common intention) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).
Mr. Devgan had later tweeted an apology, saying that he was actually referring to Muslim ruler Alauddin Khilji and inadvertently ended up naming Chishti. He had also issued a clarification on Twitter.
He said it was an error on his part, and thus, could not be treated as an offence.