A district court lawyer in Kanpur was arrested on Sunday and charged with sedition for allegedly calling Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Adityanath a terrorist in a tweet, The Indian Express reported.
The lawyer, identified as Abdul Hannan, was sent to jail after being produced before a court, Kalyanpur police station house officer Ajay Seth told the newspaper.
Hannan had retweeted a video tweeted by the state information department’s media advisor Shalabh Mani Tripathi, in which the chief minister told the Assembly that he supported cane-charging people who have been protesting against the Citizenship Amendment Act and the proposed National Register of Citizens. While retweeting the post, Hannan allegedly called Adityanath a terrorist.
“You will not show the papers and will also participate in riots, then we will cane charge, auction your houses and put up posters,” Tripathi had written with his tweet.
In a separate tweet, the lawyer announced he would provide free legal aid to protestors and appealed to all the “Constitution lovers” to follow him and share his tweet.
There have been a number of sedition cases filed against individuals who have participated in the recent anti-CAA protests. In February, a college student in Bengaluru was charged with sedition for saying “Pakistan zindabad” at an event held to protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act.
Before that, three Kashmiri students were arrested in Karnataka’s Hubballi city of Dharwad district for allegedly saying “Pakistan zindabad” in a video shared widely on social media. In January, authorities at a school in Karnataka’s Bidar city were booked on sedition charges after students performed a play criticising the Citizenship Amendment Act and the National Register of Citizens.
Sedition cases have also been filed in Assam and Uttar Pradesh against Jawaharlal Nehru University PhD scholar Sharjeel Imam, who was earlier associated with the Shaheen Bagh protest in Delhi, for a speech he made against the Citizenship Amendment Act at Aligarh Muslim University on January 16.