The women protestors of Shaheen Bagh in Delhi have sent a defamation notice to Bharatiya Janata Party’s Information Technology Cell chief Amit Malviya for his allegations that they were paid to demonstrate against the Citizenship Amendment Act, India Today reported on Monday.
The legal notice, which was sent by the office of advocate Mehmood Pracha, demanded an apology and Rs 1 crore in damages from the BJP leader.
A video shared on Twitter by Malviya on January 15 had claimed that the women were paid Rs 500 per day to oppose the amended citizenship legislation.
Shaheen Bagh has become the ground zero of protests against the Citizenship Act in the Capital. For over a month now, hundreds of women and men have occupied the Kalindi Kunj-Shaheen Bagh stretch to voice their opposition against the amended Act.
The women who sent the notice were identified as Nafisa Bano of Zakir Nagar and Shahzad Fatma of Shaheen Bagh. They alleged that Malviya has a “vested interest in defaming the mass of protesters” as he is a member of the ruling party.
“A video posted and endorsed by you on social media site Twitter, which has been played across several media platforms, had alleged that the protesters are taking Rs 500-700 in order to be a part of the protests,” the legal notice sent said. “Such statements are not only false but also have an effect of defaming the protestors in the national and international community.”
“By making and propagating false allegations against the protesters and casting aspersions on their motivations, you, the addressee, and other entities, have not only played a fraud on the general public but have also attempted to bring disrepute to the protesters who are bringing the attention of a large number of people on the issues being pressed by this extraordinary exercise of Constitutional freedom,” they added.
The protestors said the BJP leader’s actions comprise an offence under Section 500 of the Indian Penal Code as they stand defamed as against the rest of the community.
The offence is punishable with up to two years of imprisonment and fine.