New Delhi: Delhi Police has booked Delhi Minorities Commission chairman Zafarul-Islam Khan on sedition charges, two days after he allegedly wrote some “provocative” posts on social media.
A petition has also been filed in the Delhi High Court, seeking action against Khan for the post, in which he used the term ‘Hindutva bigots’.
An FIR was filed against Khan Thursday evening on the complaint of a Vasant Kunj resident, Kaushal Kant Sharma.
According to the FIR, which has been accessed by ThePrint, Khan has been booked under sections 124 A (sedition) and 153 A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, etc. and doing acts prejudicial to maintenance of harmony) of the Indian Penal Code.
In his complaint, Sharma alleged that on 28 April, Khan wrote some “provocative” posts on Twitter and Facebook, with the intent to “cause disharmony and create a rift in the society”.
The complaint further said the posts were “deliberate and seditious with malicious intent to further hurt sentiments”.
Khan has since issued an apology on Twitter for his post.
A Delhi Police official said Khan’s social media posts before 28 April will also be probed.
ThePrint reached Khan for a comment through texts, but he refused.
Issued apology for his post
In his post written both on Twitter and Facebook, Khan had thanked Kuwait for standing with the Indian Muslims.
“The Hindutva bigots calculated that given the huge economic stakes involved the Muslim and Arab world will not care about the persecution of Muslims in India,” he wrote.
“The bigot forgot that Indian Muslims enjoy huge goodwill in the eyes of of the Arab and Muslim world for their services over centuries to Islamic causes…”
In the post, Khan even mentioned that controversial religious preacher Zakir Naik is a “respected” household name in the Arab and Muslim world.
Naik, a fugitive, is being probed by the National Investigation Agency for his alleged role in terror funding and money laundering cases in the country.
On Friday, Khan, however, issued an apology on Twitter for the post.
“I realise that my tweet was ill-timed and insensitive in view of our country facing a medical emergency and fighting an unseen enemy. I apologise to all whose sentiments were hurt,” he said.
Khan invited sponsored terrorism: Plea in HC
The petition against Khan, filed by one Manoranjan Kumar, states that he “used the medium of social media and networking to propagate hatred amongst the Muslim community against Hindu Community as a whole as the Respondent No. 1 has played a wicked game by not even hinting as to who specifically he referred to as Hindutva Bigots, thus implicating the whole Hindu Community and outraging their character and conduct on volatile social media turf Facebook”.
With the post, he says, Khan has “indirectly invited members of the Organisation of Islamic Countries (OIC) to plot and conspire contingency plans in case they feel to declare war on Hindu Community thus inviting more internationally sponsored terrorism as happened in past in Kashmir and Pakistan”.
Kumar also demands that Khan’s Facebook account be “forfeited… in interest of public peace and national security”, and that he be removed from his post as the Chairperson of the Commission.