FIR Lodged Over 'Hate' Speeches At Dharma Sansad In Haridwar

Dehradun- No arrest has been made yet in connection with alleged hate speeches delivered at a "Dharma Sansad" held in Uttarakhand's Haridwar recently to incite violence against the minorities, police said on Friday.

An FIR has been lodged against Jitendra Narayan Tyagi, who was earlier known as Waseem Rizvi, and others in connection with the event on the basis of a complaint filed by a Jwalapur resident, Haridwar Kotwali Station House Officer (SHO) Rakinder Singh said, adding that an investigation in the matter is underway.

Tyagi changed his name from Waseem Rizvi after converting to Hinduism earlier this month, he said.

"We have also received some footage of the event from the complainant, which are being looked into," the SHO said.

Asked whether arrests are likely to be made, he said that may happen only after the conclusion of the probe.

Superintendent of Police (city), Haridwar Swatantra Kumar also said the investigation in the case is on.

The FIR has been registered under section 153A of the Indian Penal Code (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language etc. and doing acts prejudicial to maintenance of harmony), he said.

Extremely provocative speeches were allegedly made by the participants at the three-day event held at the Ved Niketan Dham in Haridwar last week.

On Thursday, a senior Trinamool Congress (TMC) leader demanded immediate action against the organisers and the speakers of the event.

TMC's national spokesperson Saket Gokhale submitted a complaint at the Jwalapur police station, asking the SHO to register an FIR in the matter within 24 hours.

Gokhale, who shared a copy of his complaint on Twitter, also set a deadline of December 27 for the police to arrest the organisers of the "Dharma Sansad" and those who allegedly delivered inflammatory speeches against Muslims and other minorities at the event.

If an FIR is not registered against those involved within 24 hours, a plaint will be submitted to the judicial magistrate, the TMC leader said in his complaint to the SHO.

At the event, several speakers allegedly made inflammatory and provocative speeches, calling for the killing of the members of minority communities and asking people to take up arms and shoot a former prime minister of the country.

Gokhale also shared links on Twitter of video clips purportedly of the hate speeches delivered at the event.

The "Dharma Sansad" was organised by Yati Narasimhanand Giri of the Juna Akhada, who is already under police scanner for making hate speeches and inciting violence against the minorities in the past.

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