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SC refuses to allow Delhi violence victim to intervene in hate speech case against Harsh Mander

This comes a day after the Delhi Police filed an affidavit in the Supreme Court, seeking initiation of contempt proceedings against activist Harsh Mander.

Activist Harsh Mander (right) (File photo)

The Supreme Court Thursday refused to allow a victim of the Delhi violence to intervene in the matter pertaining to alleged hate speech by activist Harsh Mander during anti-CAA protests, PTI reported. This comes a day after the Delhi Police filed an affidavit in the top court, seeking initiation of contempt proceedings against the activist for his alleged remarks about the Supreme Court and Parliament.

Appearing for Mander, senior advocate Colin Gonsalves told a bench headed by Chief Justice of India SA Bobde that a riot victim wanted to intervene in the activist’s case. To this, the CJI said, “We will not allow you to intervene.”

When Gonsalves proposed to place the alleged hate speech video by Mander on record, the CJI said the court had already asked the solicitor general to do so. “We had asked the solicitor general to put it (video of alleged hate speech by Mander) on record. We don’t need you in that proceeding,” the CJI said.

In its affidavit, the Delhi Police had accused Mander of instigating violence via a speech and said he is “known for taking a contemptuous stand and bringing the judiciary, as an institution, and individual judges in disrepute”.

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Police urged the court to not only impose exemplary costs but also initiate contempt of court proceedings against him. The affidavit was filed after the Centre had leveled similar allegations against Mander before the court.

Taking strong note of the Centre’s allegations, the apex court refused to hear Mander’s plea where he had sought registration of FIRs against BJP leaders Kapil Mishra, Anurag Thakur and Parvesh Sahib Singh for their alleged hate speeches in the run-up to the Delhi assembly elections. The court, however, sent other pleas to the Delhi High Court which are listed for March 6.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta had referred to some of the alleged hate speeches delivered by Mander during the anti-CAA protests and at the Jamia Millia Islamia on December 16 last year.

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He had read out in court certain excerpts from alleged speeches of Mander and said they included objectionable statements about the apex court, Parliament and the government.

First published on: 05-03-2020 at 14:49 IST
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