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Case registered against BJP Kerala president for offensive remarks against Islam

Kerala Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Teeka Ram Meena had recommended "appropriate action" against the BJP state chief for the alleged remarks during the election campaign meeting.

By: PTI | Thiruvananthapuram | Published: April 18, 2019 5:24:20 pm
BJP, BJP leader, BJP Kerala, Kerala BJP leader, P S Sreedharan Pillai, Kerala Chief Electoral, Chief Electoral Kerala, Muslim in Kerala, Congress, Congress in Kerala, Rahul gandhi, CPI(M), Sitaram Yechury, Election Commission, Lok Sabha Elections 2019, Lok Sabha Polls 2019, Election news. Decision 2019, Indian Express PS Sreedharan Pillai had while addressing a campaign meeting at Attingal constituency for party candidate Shobha Surendran on April 14 referred to the Balakot air strike and allegedly made some offensive remarks against the Muslim community. (File)

The Kerala Police has registered a case against BJP state president PS Sreedharan Pillai for his alleged anti-Islam remarks. The case has been registered under Sections 153 and 153 A of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) on a complaint by CPI(M) leader V Sivankutty.

Section 153 A deals with promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, etc., and doing acts prejudicial to the maintenance of harmony.

While addressing a campaign meeting at Attingal constituency for party candidate Shobha Surendran on April 14, Pillai had referred to the Balakot air strike and allegedly made some offensive remarks against the Muslim community, the complaint said.

Kerala Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Teeka Ram Meena had recommended “appropriate action” against the BJP state chief for the alleged remarks during the election campaign meeting.

Meena said Pillai had made the remarks while countering the comments of Congress President Rahul Gandhi, CPI(M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury and Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on the number of people killed in the Balakot air strike.

“Our Rahul Gandhi, Yechury, Pinarayi and all are saying that after getting there… the dead bodies… which caste, which religion… if they are Islam then there will be a few signs…if only you remove the dresses only then it can be found out. So after doing all that, we should come back is what they say,” Pillai had said, according to the CEO’s report to the EC.

The CEO, in his April 16 report said no permission was taken for the BJP meeting and a complaint has been registered in the Attingal police station in Thiruvananthapuram district.

“It appears prima facie a case of violation of Section 123(3A) and Section 125 of the Representations of People Act, 1951. Accordingly, appropriate action may be taken in the matter,” Meena said in his report sent to Deputy Election Commissioner Sudeep Jain.

On Wednesday, the CEO had informed the High Court that strong action would be taken against Pillai in the case. A petition seeking a directive to the Election Commission to take action against Pillai was filed by Sivankutty. The court disposed of the petition in the light of the submissions made by the Election Commission.

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