July 7, 2022 1:05:04 am
A day after her remarks on Goddess Kali stirred a controversy, Trinamool Congress MP Mahua Moitra Wednesday found herself facing multiple police complaints — most of them filed by the Bharatiya Janata Party — in West Bengal and Madhya Pradesh.
In Bengal, the Bharatiya Janata Party also held protests at several places including Kolkata, demanding her arrest for “hurting religious sentiments”.
Leader of Opposition in state Assembly Suvendu Adhikari said the party had filed hundreds of police complaints against Moitra across the state. “I will give the state police 10 days to file an FIR and arrest her. If that does not happen we will move the court on the 11th day. TMC must take action against her just like action was taken against Nupur Sharma,” said Adhikari.
In Madhya Pradesh, police said they were in the process of filing an FIR against Moitra. “We have received a complaint from a Bhopal resident which invokes Section 295 (A) of the IPC. We are proceeding towards registering the FIR,” said Crime Branch Deputy Commissioner of Police Amit Kumar.
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Section 295(A) deals with deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs.
“Mahua Moitra’s statements have hurt Hindu religious sentiments. Insult to Hindu gods and goddesses will not be tolerated,” Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said. Sources said more FIRs are likely to be registered in the state over the issue.
Moitra had made her remarks a day earlier, when asked about a film poster that depicted the Goddess smoking.
With her own party disassociating itself from her remarks, Moitra was left to defend herself alone. She tweeted Wednesday: “Bring it on BJP! Am a Kali worshipper. I am not afraid of anything. Not your ignoramuses. Not your goons. Not your police. And most certainly not your trolls. Truth doesn’t need back up forces.”
On Wednesday, Moitra unfollowed TMC’s official Twitter handle. She still follows Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. Moitra was not available for comment on this.
TMC Rajya Sabha MP Sukhendu Shekhar Ray said: “Our party has made it very clear that it does not support such kind of statements made by her. We condemn such comments.”
The party had tweeted on Tuesday, “The comments made by @MahuaMoitra at the #IndiaTodayConclaveEast2022 and her views expressed on Goddess Kali have been made in her personal capacity and are not endorsed by the party in any manner or form.”
Moitra Tuesday had been responding to a question on the controversy over a poster of a film, Kaali, by Canada-based filmmaker Leena Manimekali. The poster showed a woman dressed as Kali smoking a cigarette.
Manimekali has come under fire after the poster surfaced on social media, with police complaints being filed against her in Delhi and Lucknow on Tuesday. After widespread criticism on social media, Moitra had said later Tuesday that she “did not back any film or poster or mention the word smoking”.
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