The Supreme Court on Tuesday granted protection from arrest to Aam Aadmi Party leader Sanjay Singh in connection with the first information reports filed against him in Uttar Pradesh for alleged hate speech, Live Law reported.
The cases against Singh are related to a remark that he made at a press conference in Lucknow in August last year. He had accused the Uttar Pradesh government of favouring a certain caste over the others.
Multiple FIRs were filed against the Singh in Uttar Pradesh, which he alleged was an attempt harass him. He approached the Supreme Court seeking the quashing of the FIRs and a non-bailable warrant issued against him.
Though the bench headed by Justice Ashok Bhushan granted relief to Singh, it noted that he cannot divide the society on lines of castes and religion, PTI reported.
Singh’s lawyers Vivek Tankha and Sumeer Sodhi told the Supreme Court that the police did not follow procedures while filing cases against him. They added that a sanction to prosecute Singh had to be sought from the Rajya Sabha chairperson, since he was a member of the House. However, the court noted that this does not mean no offence can be made out against Singh.
The Supreme Court said that the Uttar Pradesh government could approach the Rajya Sabha chairperson to seek sanction to prosecute Singh. It also issued a notice to the state government on Singh’s petitions to club the FIRs filed against him. The case will now be heard in March.