HC seeks documents in sedition case against Kangana

Sedition case against Kangana Ranaut: Bombay HC seeks documents from Bandra court

The bench said it would call for the documents from the magistrate's court for inspection

Kangana Ranaut. Credit: PTI file photo.

The Bombay High Court on Friday sought documents from the Bandra magistrate court pertaining to the sedition case against Kangana Ranaut and her sister Rangoli Chandel.

A division bench of Justices S S Shinde and Manish Pitale sought the papers after Ranaut and Chandel's advocate Rizwan Siddiquee told the court that the documents submitted by the complainant in the case before the magistrate and those given to the high court do not tally.

Siddiquee told the court that the magistrate had ordered for FIR to be registered in "haste" and that there was "non-application of mind".

"The procedure laid down in law before filing such a complaint before a magistrate was not followed in this case," he said.

Read | Sedition case: None of my tweets incited violence, Kangana to HC

As per the law, a complaint has to be first sent to the senior inspector of the concerned police station. If no response is received for two weeks then a letter has to be sent to the zonal Deputy Commissioner of Police and then a complaint can be filed before the magistrate, Siddiquee argued.

"In this case, the complainant wrote to the senior inspector, but then sent the same letter to the DCP and approached the magistrate's court even before the two week period got over," he told the court.

Advocate Rizwan Merchant, appearing for the complainant Munawwar Ali Sayyad, a casting director and fitness trainer, told the court that the complaint was sent to the DCP, too, but there was some error in the date.

The bench then said it would call for the documents from the magistrate's court for inspection.

"The petitioner's advocate has raised dispute about certain documents submitted by the complainant and that it does not tally with the documents submitted before the magistrate," the court said.

"Hence, we deem it appropriate to call for relevant documents from the Bandra magistrate's court in relation to this case," the court directed and posted the matter for further hearing on March 22.

Till the next date, the interim protection from no coercive action granted to Ranaut and Chandel by the high court will continue.

The bench was hearing the petition filed by Ranaut and her sister, seeking to quash the FIR registered against them by the suburban Bandra police.

The FIR, under sedition charges and for allegedly "trying to create hatred and communal tension" through their posts on social media was registered pursuant to orders passed by the Bandra magistrate's court directing the police to carry out an inquiry against Ranaut and her sister following a complaint lodged against them.

In his complaint to the magistrate court, Sayyed had alleged that Ranaut, through her tweets and television interviews, had continuously defamed Hindi film industry by portraying Bollywood as a hub of nepotism, favouritism, drug addicts, communally biased and murderers, etc.

He said that they had also repeatedly promoted enmity between communities through their remarks.

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