A 15-year-old boy and three other unidentified minors have been booked under various charges, including sedition, for allegedly burning the national flag and raising anti-India slogans while making a TikTok video under the Bazar Khala police station limits in Lucknow on Sunday.
The boy, a Class 9 student, was on Monday produced before a Juvenile Justice Board which sent him to a juvenile home, said Anil Kumar Yadav, Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) of Bazar Khala.
His family said he decided to burn the flag because it had become dirty after some boys urinated on it.
Police filed an FIR on a complaint by a resident of the area, Ravikant Singh who alleged that he was attacked by the four boys when he tried to stop them from burning the Tricolour.
“On Sunday evening, I was cycling… when I saw some boys burning the national flag and raising anti-India slogans. After I asked them to stop, they attacked me after which people rushed to help me. We managed to catch one boy,” the complaint read.
The 15-year-old was handed over to police. He has been booked under IPC sections 124-A (sedition), 153-A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion), 504 (intent to provoke breach of peace), 505 (1) (B) (intent to cause fear), 352 (punishment for assault), 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), 506 (criminal intimidation), and under the Prevention of Insults to National Honour Act.
ACP Yadav said, “The boy claimed that the flag was lying in garbage and some children were urinating on it, so he thought of burning it… We are identifying the other three boys. We think the other three are also minors,” said Yadav.
Police said that the boy’s father is an embroidery worker and the family lives in an area within the jurisdiction of Bazar Khala police station.
ADCP (West) Shyam Narayan Singh told The Indian Express, “We have recovered the burnt flag . We will detain the remaining accused as the probe progresses.”
The uncle of the boy told The Indian Express: “If he had known the consequences, he would never have done it. He did not want to hurt anyone’s feelings…When we met him, he kept asking me to take him home and that he was sorry. He was very scared and could not even talk to us properly. They have lodged such serious charges against a minor.”
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