B'luru court summons Dhoni, business magazine editor

B'luru court summons Dhoni, business magazine editor

The 9th Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Court here on Saturday issued summons to cricketer M S Dhoni and the editor of a business magazine to appear before it with regard to an advertisement featuring the cricketer as Lord Vishnu.

Hearing a petition filed by activist Jayakumar Hiremath, Judge J V Vijayanand ordered summons to Dhoni, the editor and five others to be personally present before the court during the next hearing on May 8.

The petitioner contended that Dhoni and the editor have hurt the Hindu religious sentiments by depicting Dhoni as Lord Vishnu with six hands holding products that he endorses. Among the products, a shoe is also held in one of the hands, said the petitioner. It is not right to place a shoe in the hands of a deity worshipped by Hindus, said the petitioner.

The photoshopped picture of Dhoni as Lord Vishnu was published in a business magazine in April, 2014 and a complaint was filed in May, 2013. Hiremath said that he tried to speak to Dhoni about the picture, but there was no proper response from him. Similarly, when the management of the magazine also did not respond, a complaint was filed.

Dharmapal, the petitioner's advocate said the complaint has been filed under Section 295 A of the Indian Penal Code which talks about deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage reli­gious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or reli­gious beliefs. If found guilty, the punishment can be a maximum of three years of imprisonment along with penalty. The advocate added that it is a non-bailable offence.

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