Girl faces arrest for Facebook comment against Bal Thackeray

Bal ThackerayIn a very rare yet expected incident a Girl had to Face police arrest after she posted on Facebook, “People like Thackeray are born and die daily and one should not observe a bandh for that”.

Another Girl who liked the comment was also booked and arrested under Section 295 (a) of the IPC (for hurting religious sentiments ) and Section 64 (a) of the Information Technology Act, 2000.

And if this was not enough, over 2,000 Shiv Sena workers attacked and ransacked her uncle’s orthopaedic clinic at Palghar, Mumbai.

The Girl later deleted her comment and publicly apologized but the angry mob was relentless against her and she had to deactivate her Facebook account.

Maharashtra director general of police Sanjeev Dayal ordered a probe on Monday into the arrest of a 21-year-old girl and her friend for posting comments on social networking website Facebook on the shutdown in Mumbai after Shiv Sena chief Bal Thackeray’s death.

“An inquiry has been ordered in the case and a report will be submitted by the inspector general of the Konkan range on Saturday,” Dayal told IANS.

Thane rural police on Sunday arrested Shaheen Dadha for questioning the shutdown in the city after Thackeray’s death on Saturday, and the subsequent shutdown on Sunday for his funeral and cremation.

Another girl Renu in Dadha’s friends’ list, who ‘liked’ the comment, was also arrested.

An official from Palghar police station in Thane rural confirmed the arrests of the girls. The official said the girls were released on bail on Monday after they were presented in the local court.

Reports here said that both the girls were booked and arrested under Section 295(a) of the Indian Penal Code (for hurting religious sentiments) and Section 64(a) of the Information Technology Act, 2000.

She allegedly said that one should not observe bandh for Thackeray’s funeral. “We should remember Bhagat Singh and Sukhdev,” the post said.

Dhada’s friend Renu was arrested for ‘liking’ the post. “Police arrested both of them under section 505(2) (statements creating or promoting enmity, hatred or ill-will between classes). Today, they were granted bail,” their advocate Sudhir Gupta said.

The duo was arrested following a police complaint lodged by a local Sena leader.

After the comment was posted, a mob of nearly 40 Shiv Sainiks allegedly barged into Dhada’s uncles’s orthopaedic hospital at Palghar and vandalised the place yesterday. However, no arrests were made in connection with the attack.

Dr Abdul Yusuf Dhada, whose hospital was ransacked, said he has suffered heavy financial losses.

With the police coming under attack, Investigating Officer Shrikant Pingle said anybody can comment on Facebook. “But one should make good comments which doesn’t hurt others’ sentiments,” he added.

In an e-mail to the Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan, Katju warned of “legal consequences” if he failed to take action against the police personnel concerned.

“If you see the entire post, it nowhere insults anybody’s religious feelings,” he added. Maharashtra Police’s IG(Law and Order) Deven Bharti said the police probe will be conducted by Special IG of Konkan range Sukhwinder Singh.

“We have ordered an inquiry….if any further action needs to be taken the probe team will decide and send a report. On this report we will act,” he added.

“There were two major issues. We have asked to inquire whatever has been written, whether it qualifies for an offence. Second, even if the offence is registered, why the arrests were made, and under which circumstances were the arrests made,” he said.